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Capital Grant

Grants to Western Massachusetts Nonprofits, Schools, and Churches for
Capital Projects and Campaigns that Benefit the Pioneer Valley

Agency Type:

Foundation / Corporation

Funding Source:

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Community Foundation of Western Massachusetts (CFWM)

Conf. Date:


Deadline Date:

09/14/18 5:00 PM


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Grants ranging from $2,500 to $20,000 and grants of up to $30,000 to Western Massachusetts nonprofit organizations, churches, schools, and IHEs for capital projects and campaigns. Applicants must have a phone meeting with the program officer between July 5 and September 7. Funding is intended to support organizations that address the diverse needs of residents of the Pioneer Valley. Eligible counties include Hampden, Franklin, and Hampshire. Please note that capital campaign requests will only be accepted from organizations serving Hampden County.

Capital Request:

- Small or large renovations/additions.
- Construction or expansion projects.
- The purchase of land for community benefit.
- Equipment, vehicles and/or computer technology purchases with a useful life of at least 3 years.

Capital Campaigns:

- New building construction or renovations to an existing building that cost more than $1 million with a minimum campaign goal of $500,000
- Large fundraising efforts with requests to foundations, businesses, individuals, and government funds/banks/bond financing
- Must be in the “public phase” of the campaign where no more than 85% of the campaign total has been raised at time of grant submission.

Funding Preference:

- Preference for capital needs projects that benefit the overall organization rather than specific programs of the organization.
- Preference for an overall award portfolio that represents the following sectors: arts and culture, education, environment, health, housing, and human services as well as organizations of various budget sizes.

There is a minimum of $290,000 available for Capital grants; $200,000 for general Capital requests and $90,000 targeted for Capital Campaigns. The CFWM will fund the Capital Grant program using sources of endowed funding (funds) that have legal geographic or use restrictions. Anticipated distribution of the $200,000 available for general Capital requests as follows:

- 60% of funding for Hampden County, with significant proportion of funds targeted to Springfield.
- 20% of funding for Hampshire County.
- 20% of funding for Franklin County.
- CFWM’s 2018 Capital Campaign priority is to only fund campaigns that benefit residents of Springfield and/or Hampden County.

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 183647

Estimated Total Program Funding:


Estimated Size of Grant:

Grant range: $2,500 to $20,000 for general Capital request. Up to $30,000 for a Capital Campaign with no required match.

Term of Contract:

Duration of grants:

- Capital request: Up to 12 months from grant award date.
- Capital campaign: No time frame for completion.

Most grant programs provide funding for one year (or less).

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

General Organization Eligibility

- Applying organizations must be recognized as tax-exempt under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code.
- Organizations that do not have public charity status may apply for grants if fiscally sponsored by a 501(c)(3) public charity. (
- Private education and religious organizations with projects that serve broad community needs.
- Must be serving residents of Franklin, Hampden and Hampshire counties in the Pioneer Valley.
- Must be current with all CFWM grant report requirements.

School or Education-Oriented Organization Eligibility

For Public Schools (Preschool through 12th grade):

- Applications must come from 501(c)(3) entities for the benefit of public school systems, including charter schools.
- Requests for support for capital improvements, core staff salaries, or technology (hardware and software) will not be considered.
- Projects benefiting public schools (preschool through 12th grade) including charter schools may include value-added special programming which could involve after-school and summer programs, community service projects, and extra-curricular programs.

For Private Schools (Preschool through 12th grade) where 50% or more of income is generated from state, federal or municipal funding sources:

- Applications must come from 501(c)(3) entities.
- Requests for educational scholarships will not be considered.
- Requests must follow general grant guidelines.

For Private schools (preschool through 12th grade) where less than 50% of income is generated from state, federal or municipal funding sources:

- Projects must benefit the community beyond the school’s population.

For Colleges or Universities (Public or Private):

- Requests will not be considered for operating expenses, projects and activities, or equipment which are within the primary instructional and service responsibility of a college or university and are limited for the college, university or school faculty, staff and students.
- Requests for funding of projects and activities provided by colleges or universities must:

- Demonstrate benefit to the community,
- Provide documentation of community involvement in the planning and the implementation of the project, and
- Include with their application letters of support from community organizations.

For nonprofits seeking funding to work directly with schools:

Organizations must provide letters of collaboration or copies of signed agreement forms from the principal or superintendent of school(s) that the organization will be working with during the project.

For all applicants: Requests for educational scholarships, including higher education scholarships, will not be considered.

Applicants must have been in operation under their current 501(c)3 status long enough to provide at least one year of audited or reviewed financial documents.

Activities Ineligible for Funding from Any of CFWM’s Grant Programs:

- General Operating Support Grants. Exceptions may be made for very small organizations that are limited in scope and only operate one program.
- Endowments
- Projects that were funded by CFWM less than one year prior to the new application.
- Retroactive funding for activities or expenses that have already occurred prior to the grant decision date
- Fundraising events, the purchase of tickets for benefits, or courtesy advertising;
- Projects that seek to directly or indirectly influence legislation or election campaigns; activities related to influencing government policies, permitting or regulations will not be considered
- Higher education scholarships. Note: CFWM offers scholarships and interest free education loans to which individuals may apply.

Only in rare circumstances and with prior approval would CFWM fund:

- Requests for academic or medical research
- Replacement of governmental or other public funding; exceptions may be made for grants bridging periods before anticipated funding;
- Multi-year funding

No Capital Campaign funds are available this year for Hampshire and Franklin counties.

Pre-proposal Conference:

All applicants must schedule a pre-application phone conversation with the Capital Grant Program Officer prior to consideration for this funding opportunity. No exceptions will be granted; this includes organizations with a prior grant history or prior programmatic relationship with CFWM.

The calendar to schedule a pre-application phone call will be available starting June 25, 2018 for phone conversations between July 5, 2018 and September 7, 2018. Pre-application phone conversation slots will be first come, first served. Based on available resources, a maximum of 50 pre-application phone conversation slots will be made available for potential applicants. Once the 50 slots are full we will take names for a waiting list.


Pre-Application Information:

Important Dates:

- Pre-application phone call calendar opens: June 25, 2018. Click here to schedule a call.
- Pre-application phone call calendar closes: September 7, 2018.
- Grant application opens: July 9, 2018
- Grant submission deadline: September 14, 2018 at 5:00 p.m.


Ineligible activities:

Contact Information:

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

Online application portal:

Sheila Toto

Community Foundation of Western Massachusetts
333 Bridge St
Springfield, MA 01103
Ph: 413.732.2858 Fax: 413.733.8565

URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

USA: Massachusetts: The Pioneer Valley (Franklin, Hampden and Hampshire Counties)