Central Georgia Empowerment Fund
What is the Central Georgia Empowerment Fund?
The Central Georgia Empowerment Fund, a program of the Community Foundation of Central Georgia, is a giving circle supporting the inclusion of black leadership and non-profits serving the black community. Each member gives $325 per year to improve the quality of life for African American communities by enhancing sustainability, creating opportunities for an, and fostering self-sufficiency in individuals that have long been marginalized and excluded in many ways from wealth building. The contributions from the members are pooled together. Half of the money is available for grants in the year it is given and the other half is placed in an endowment for the future. The members will listen to the finalists’ two-minute presentations at a grant finalist event to be held in August. Then, members will vote to recommend the grant recipients.
Empowerment Fund Grant Schedule
March 15, 2023 —Application is live for nonprofit organizations to apply for a grant.
May 30, 2023 at 12:00pm (noon) — Application deadline
August 28th – Time and Location TBA — Grant Finalist Event & Recipient Presentations
Eligibility and Funding Priority – Who can apply and for what?
501(c)(3) nonprofits organizations, schools, government entities, higher education institutions, or religious organizations may apply for non-sectarian community projects in the Central Georgia region. Applicants who wish to apply must have a final report on file with the Community Foundation for all previously awarded grants, if applicable.
In addition, applicants must:
- Have been in operation for at least 2 years
- Identify as Black-led and Black-serving*
- Annual operating budget of less than $500,000
*Organizations that seek grant funding should be undertaking impactful work in the African-American community. Definition of black-led and black serving is below:
- Executive Director is Black AND
- At least 30% of the board is Black
- 50% of the programs or the organizational services must benefit members of or support issues that directly impact the African American community.
Priority will be given to projects that demonstrate the following:
- Encourage coordination, cooperation and collaboration among organizations
- Applications must be completed online in the Community Foundation web portal.
- The Empowerment Fund will consider applications from faith-based organizations only for non-sectarian, community outreach programs.
- If your organization’s application is selected as a finalist, a representative of the organization will be required to give a 2-minute presentation of the proposed project at the Empowerment Fund grant finalist event in August. The two-minute time limit is strictly enforced.
- If your organization is awarded a grant, the Empowerment Fund membership may conduct an informal follow-up during the grant period. At the completion of the project, you will be required to submit a final report.
Grants will be made only to organizations for projects serving the Central Georgia region, specifically from Bibb, Houston, and Jones
The maximum grant amount per organization is $6,000.
Frequency an Organization can Apply
There are no restrictions on how often an organization can apply to the Empowerment Fund.
Grant Award Schedule
The application deadline is noon on May 30th at noon. The grants will be announced by late-August. All grant funds must be expended by May 1st of the following year in which the grant is awarded.
How to apply
You will need a User ID and Password to access the application. Please note that it will take at least one business day to process a new registration for the Web Portal; do not wait until the week of the deadline to register. Once your registration is processed, complete the application. You will be required to upload the following documents as PDF files. You may click on the links below to see a sample.
Project Budget Summary – should include all revenue sources (requested, pending, and received) and expenses for the specific project.
Board Authorization Letter – should be a statement from the organization’s Board of Directors authorizing the request and agreeing to complete the project if funded.
Board of Directors/Trustees List – should include directors’/trustees’ individual terms of office and their individual percentage of participation in the organization’s Board meetings.
Organization’s Current Annual Operating Budget – should be a report of the organization’s planned budget indicating projected revenue and expenses for the current fiscal year.
Current IRS Determination Letter – should indicate 501(c)(3) tax-exempt status. If no designation, a statement detailing the status of an application with the Federal Government or future application plans may be submitted, along with a statement of charitable purpose.
Most Recent Financial Audit Report or Most Recent IRS Form 990 – If your organization has both, please submit the Financial Audit Report.
If funded, your organization must submit an online final report along with detailed expenditures made with the grant funds within 60 days after depletion of the grant funds, prior to submitting a new grant application, or no later than one year from the deadline date of the cycle in which you applied for your grant, whichever is earliest.
Deadline for Grants Awarded: June 1st from the year your grant was awarded.
How to talk about your grant
In all materials, describe your funding as a grant from the Central Georgia Empowerment Fund of the Community Foundation of Central Georgia.
News Releases: Promote your project with a news release to the local media. If you’re inviting the media out to cover your project or event, please invite us too by sending the information to firstname.lastname@example.org. We would also like to share your news releases with our contacts, please include email@example.com as a release contact.
Social Media: Spread the word about your project through social media channels such as Facebook, YouTube, and Twitter. You can find the Central Georgia Empowerment Fund on Facebook, and we encourage you to tag us in your posts.
Logo: You are welcome and encouraged to use the Central Georgia Empowerment Fund logo on any collateral materials about your project, including websites, email blasts, brochures, and posters. You can download our logo by clicking here. A copy of any materials created should be submitted with your final report.
How these grants are made possible
These grants are made possible by contributions of the Central Georgia Empowerment Fund members. These contributions are split each year so that half is spent on grants in the year of the gift and the other half is put into an endowment for the future.