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Capacity Building Grants

As part of its grantmaking strategy, the Community Foundation is committed to building infrastructure for a strong and sustainable community of nonprofits.

Our capacity building grants are designed to help nonprofits secure the professional and timely assistance necessary to enhance organizational capacity and address important issues of organizational development and effectiveness.


  • Funding preference is given to nonprofit organizations that have received a Community Impact grant from The Community Foundation. 
  • Before submitting a Capacity Building proposal, organizations must contact a member of the Community Engagement team.

Grant Priorities

Capacity Building grants support opportunities to build infrastructure for a strong and sustainable community of nonprofit organizations.

Examples of capacity building projects include:

  • Planning activities such as organizational assessments, strategic planning, fund development, communications/marketing, or business planning.
  • Board development activities such as leadership training, defining the role of the board, and strengthening governance.
  • Strategic relationships. Our funds may be used to provide technical assistance or consultant support to help two or more organizations work through collaboration and strategic restructuring, positioning for merger or affiliation, or business planning for social enterprise.
  • Internal operations that may include improvements to financial management, human resource or volunteer management, or facility planning.
  • Technology improvements through upgrades to hardware and software, networking, websites, and staff training to optimize use of technology.
  • New for July 2018 - Leadership development: supporting a leadership training experience for two or more members of the organization’s leadership/ management team.

    Funds previously used to support the Stettinius Awards for Nonprofit Leadership will now be used to help support leadership development grants through the capacity building grant program. This change is intended to bring greater value to local organizations. Not only is the application process simpler, but engaging a larger team fosters bonding between participants and extends the educational value beyond a single leader.


Requests may be submitted at any time. Applications received by January 24 will be reviewed in February and those received by July 25 will be reviewed in August. Please contact Kathleen Demro to discuss an appropriate timeline and detailed grant guidelines for your Capacity Building request.

"The Community Foundation's capacity building grant to the Virginia Center for Inclusive Communities was truly transformative for our organization. All facets of program evaluation (from logic models to data analysis) are now embedded in our daily work in schools, businesses and communities."

Jonathan Zur, President & CEO, VCIC