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Grants to North Carolina Nonprofits and Agencies to Improve the
Quality of Life and Provide Economic Benefit in Eligible Regions

Asheville Merchants Fund (AMF)

Agency Type:

Foundation / Corporation

Funding Source:

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The Community Foundation of Western North Carolina (CFWNC)

LOI Date:

03/05/21

Deadline Date:

05/14/21

Description:

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Grants to North Carolina nonprofit organizations and government entities to improve the quality of life and provide economic benefit in eligible regions. Applicants are required to submit an online LOI prior to a full grant application. Areas of interest include projects that address innovative economic approaches, quality jobs and workforce, social infrastructure, and youth success in school. Projects must target economic benefit for Buncombe County residents.

The Asheville Merchants Fund (AMF) seeks to improve the quality of life in Buncombe County by supporting innovative projects that strengthen the community through economic effects in one or more of its focus areas. Priority will be given to projects comprehensively addressing one or more of the following areas:

Innovative Economic Approaches

  • Community asset development: investing in emerging local economies, especially those related to home-grown businesses
  • Entrepreneurship: resources for entrepreneurs, including access to training, service providers and capital to accelerate business success

Quality Jobs & Workforce

  • Living wage work: recruitment, retention and expansion of businesses providing high-quality, well-paying jobs
  • Appropriate skills: training for jobs that are in demand and critical to community viability
  • Non-traditional training and employment services: flexible schedules, short-term certificate programs and community-based (versus academic institutional) settings

Social Infrastructure

  • Programs contributing to family economic success, including financial education and asset development
  • Affordable housing: developing effective strategies and supporting implementation
  • Services that increase employees’ ability to participate fully in the workforce, including health and wellness or dependent care

Youth Success in School

  • Middle and high school students: targeted academic (particularly in math, science and technology) and non-academic activities related to job skill development
  • Family support: improving the home environment for learning

AMF supports organizations that have the capacity and vision to develop multi-faceted programs to help Buncombe County and its citizens thrive in the emerging economic environment. Factors considered in evaluating applications include:

  • Focus on a critical need that addresses a gap in existing services
  • Defined, measurable results that can be achieved within the grant period and make a long-term difference in the lives of the beneficiaries
  • Skilled leadership with the potential to carry out innovative, integrated efforts effectively in one or more of the focus areas
  • Demonstrate partnerships that will enhance the potential for project success

For additional funding parameters, see: URL for Full Text.

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 149302

Number of Grants:

Approximately five to eight grants are awarded during each two-year funding cycle.

Estimated Size of Grant:

The Fund provides grants of up to $50,000 over two years.

Term of Contract:

Funding will be available for program expenses incurred during the grant period, which will begin July 1, 2021, and end no later than June 30, 2023.

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

Tax-exempt organizations described in Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code and governmental entities are eligible to apply for AMF grants.

- Statewide or national programs will not be considered unless (1) funding is sought solely for the portion of the program that will directly benefit Buncombe County and (2) local people are significantly involved in program development and management.

What is not funded:
Grants generally do not support: scholarships; sectarian religious purposes; partisan political purposes; endowment funds; deficit funding or debt retirement; capital support for new buildings or major expansions; festivals or one-time events such as exhibits, performances or fundraisers; or activities taking place or expenses incurred before grant funds are awarded.

Pre-Application Information:

Online letters of intent are due March 5, 2021.

- Semi-finalists selected to complete a full application will be notified by mid-April 2021.
- Full applications from semi-finalists are due May 14, 2021.
- Site visits by the AMF Advisory Committee will occur in May and June 2021.
- Final funding decisions will be made and announced by mid-June 2021.

Grants are paid in two installments, with the second year of funding contingent upon reasonable progress toward expected results.

If you would like to discuss your proposal or have questions regarding eligibility, you are welcome to contact Tara Scholtz, Senior Program Officer.

For technical assistance with the online grant system, please contact Diane Crisp, Grants Manager.

Contact Information:

Before starting your grant application, please review the funding source's website listed below for updates/changes/addendums/conferences/LOIs.

LOI and application: https://cfwnc.org/grantseekers/about-grants/online-grant-application-process

Tara Scholtz: scholtz@cfwnc.org or at 828-367-9913.

Diane Crisp: crisp@cfwnc.org or at 828-367-9904.

The Community Foundation of Western North Carolina
4 Vanderbilt Park Drive, Suite 300
Asheville, NC 28803
Phone: (828) 254-4960
Email: info@cfwnc.org

URL for Full Text (RFP):

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USA: North Carolina: Buncombe County

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