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Community Building Mini-Grants Program

Grants to Massachusetts Volunteer Groups in Eligible Locations
for Projects Addressing COVID-19-Related Issues

Agency Type:

Foundation / Corporation

Funding Source:

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United Way of Greater New Bedford

Conf. Date:


Deadline Date:

02/26/21 Noon


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Grants of up to $2,500 and in-kind support to Massachusetts volunteer groups and organizations in eligible locations for small-scale community projects addressing issues related to the Coronavirus (COVID-19) health crisis. Program focus areas include health, education, financial stability, or basic needs. Eligible groups are based in New Bedford, Acushnet, Dartmouth, Fairhaven, Freetown, Mattapoisett, Marion, Rochester, and Wareham.

United Way’s Community Building Mini-Grants Program is the only local resource to promote civic involvement and bring about positive change at the grassroots all-volunteer level. The goal of the Mini-Grants Program is to encourage volunteerism and creative thinking as a viable way to strengthen all aspects of the community.  The program encourages community building by supporting citizens to come together, form and build relationships, and address a need or issue of concern. Groups must align their project proposals with a United Way impact area: Health, Education, Financial Stability, or Basic Needs. For this cycle of Mini-Grants, United Way is seeking projects that will creatively address some of issues created by COVID-19.

The program provides financial and technical support to all-volunteer groups working to strengthen the community through projects that address locally identified concerns or issues. 

Projects must be in the following focus areas:

  • Health: To create an environment where residents, families, and communities can access the support they need to maintain or improve their health and well-being
  • Education: To improve student outcomes and engage families in the education of their children so children have the opportunity for educational attainment and life success
  • Financial Stability: To connect individuals to opportunities that provide a pathway for economic mobility, ultimately breaking the cycle of poverty
  • Basic Needs: To provide direct assistance to those in urgent need of basic necessities such as food, clothing, transportation, toiletries, shelter, safety, etc.

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 179137

Estimated Size of Grant:

Grants are awarded up to $2,500. For additional grantee benefits, see p. 3 of the RFP in Supporting Documents below.

Term of Contract:

Projects must be completed within one (1) year of the grant award:
• April 6, 2021: Funding begins
• April 2022: Funds must be spent or reported as unused

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

To be eligible for Mini-Grant funding, groups/organizations:
- Must be all-volunteer groups with an established membership.
- Have an annual budget/income must not exceed $40,000
- Group must be based in Greater New Bedford (New Bedford, Acushnet, Dartmouth, Fairhaven, Freetown, Marion, Mattapoisett, Rochester, Wareham)

Legal incorporation 501(c)(3) is not required.

Who Cannot Apply:
• Fraternal organizations, political campaigns or religious activities
• Groups which discriminate
• Any previous recipient that did not adhere to the policy, criteria, terms, conditions and commitments of the United Way of Greater New Bedford Community Building Mini-Grants Program

For ineligible expenses, see

Pre-proposal Conference:

All applicants, including past Mini-Grantees, are encouraged to attend an Information Session

Virtual information sessions will be held in January:
To register for January 19th at 4pm:

To register for January 22nd at 10 am:

Pre-Application Information:

• January 2021: Information Sessions
• January 15, 2021: Application Opens
• February 26, 2021 at noon: Application Deadline
• By April 1, 2021: Award Decision Notification
• April 6, 2021: Virtual Event for Grantees
• April 6, 2021: Funding begins
• April 2022: Funds must be spent or reported as unused

Contact Information:

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

Apply Online:

For more information about the Community Building Mini-Grants Program, please contact Victoria Grasela at 508-994-9625, ext. 210 or

United Way of Greater New Bedford
128 Union Street, Suite 105
New Bedford, MA 02740
(508) 994-9625

URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

USA: Massachusetts: Greater New Bedford: New Bedford, Acushnet, Dartmouth, Fairhaven, Freetown, Mattapoisett, Marion, Rochester, and Wareham.

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