Community trust grants available for Lowndes County nonprofits

Published 5:16 pm Wednesday, February 8, 2023

The Central Alabama Community Foundation processes two annual grant cycles — in spring and fall — awarding trust grants to nonprofit organizations offering projects and services in Lowndes, Macon, and Montgomery counties.

The foundation links charitable resources with community needs and opportunities, allowing donors to stretch their giving dollars by partnering with other donations for greater impact.

According to CACF President Burton Crenshaw, people can use the foundation to give back to the community, directing where the money goes, giving through, and not to the foundation.

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“We are able to hold funds for years and years to come,” Crenshaw said. “If people give directly to a nonprofit, that nonprofit is going to use [the money] right away. We are able to spread it out and pool it with other donors that are giving to make the gift even larger, so people can make a larger impact with their giving.”

Family wellness and education grants process in spring each year. Applications became available in January this year and are due back to the foundation on Feb. 10. The foundation conducts site visits between March and April, awarding family wellness grants in May and Education awards in August.

“Family wellness and education grants are open right now for any organization providing services within those categories,” Crenshaw said. “It might be a mental health clinic providing free services. We have given resources to medical clinics to purchase medicine or medical testing. Sometimes it’s for transportation for individuals needing medical care. It could also be anything from a food pantry to a shelter or an after-school program.”

Hope Inspired Ministries (HIM) in Lowndes County received a CACF education grant in August 2022 and used the monies to help fund career training within the county.

“Without the grant support we wouldn’t be able to do what we do,” said HIM Executive Director John Bowman. “We have private donors and churches that sponsor our work, but in rural counties we have less resources. We rely on these grant partners to work with us in those situations.”

The foundation’s cultural and community enhancement grant cycle processes in the fall. Applications will become available in July 2023 and are due back to the foundation on Aug. 11. Site visits, if needed, are conducted between September and October.

Social services and shelter awards are announced in December and community building and arts awards are designated the following February.

“We really want to do more in Lowndes County,” Crenshaw said. “We don’t get a lot of applications from that area.

“We encourage groups to reach out and talk to us about what they’re doing, to let us help them through the process. Our grant application is easy to fill out, but if someone has never written a grant it might be intimidating to them. We just want to help them because that’s what we are here to do — to get the money out into the community.”

Guidance on eligible projects and review information is available at cacfinfo.org/grants. For more information, contact Clare Johnson at (334) 264-6223 or clare.johnson@cacfinfo.org.