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Neighborhood Small Grants Program (NSGP)

Grants to Tennessee Nonprofit Neighborhood Groups in Eligible
Locations for Activities Benefiting Local Neighborhoods

Agency Type:


Funding Source:

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City of Knoxville

Conf. Date:


Deadline Date:

07/26/21 4:30 PM Receipt


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Grants to Tennessee nonprofit neighborhood groups in eligible locations for activities that strengthen area neighborhoods. Interested applicants are required to attend a workshop prior to submitting an application. Funding is intended to support projects in areas that include, but are not limited to, public safety, neighborhood improvements, recreation, and organizational development. Funded activities must serve the City of Knoxville.

The NSGP’s Primary goals are to:

  • Encourage neighborhood organizations to connect neighborhood residents with one another — and to engage the skills and knowledge of the residents.
  • Build neighborhood capacity to plan and implement neighborhood improvement strategies.

The NSGP’s Secondary goals are to:

  • Increase the number of residents and resident leaders (including youth) involved in responding constructively to neighborhood issues, problems, and opportunities.
  • Strengthen each neighborhood’s connection to other neighborhoods, existing community assets, and partnership opportunities.
  • Support efforts to form neighborhood groups in unorganized areas.

Some Project Examples:

  •  Neighborhood Improvement & Placemaking
  •  Crime and Public Safety
  •  Organizational Development 
  •  Recreational, Educational, and Cultural Activities 

For further details on these project examples, see pages 4-5 of the Guidelines document in Supporting Documents below. 

For eligible uses of funds, see page 6 of the Guidelines document. 

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 183678

Estimated Total Program Funding:


Estimated Size of Grant:

Awards to support one-year projects can range from $500 to $3,000, or $4,500 if partnering with another neighborhood, public school, umbrella neighborhood group, or non-profit.

Start-Up Groups: Funding will be limited to $500 or less.

Term of Contract:

End Date for Projects: December 31, 2022

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

Eligibility Criteria and Requirements:

1. Neighborhood groups that received funding under the previous rounds are eligible to apply in this 2022 round if their projects will be substantially completed by January of 2022.

2. Applicants must be resident-led, resident-controlled neighborhood groups serving neighborhoods in the City of Knoxville.
- Neighborhood groups can include neighborhood associations, homeowners associations, tenant associations and neighborhood watch groups.
- In the case of neighborhoods that are only partly in the city, more than 50% of the housing units must be located inside city limits.
- Umbrella organizations that are made up of and controlled by member City neighborhood groups are also eligible to apply.

3. Groups must be democratically run and managed by residents within the neighborhood to reflect the concerns of residents.

4. A group must conduct a regular election process to select leaders, and this process must be included in the group’s bylaws or otherwise available in written form. (Groups without written rules can submit a statement explaining how they are working toward this goal.)

5. A group must have a defined geographic boundary, hold regular meetings, maintain meeting minutes, and be registered with the Office of Neighborhoods.

6. A group cannot discriminate on the basis of race, creed, color, religion, sex, age, national origin, or disability when carrying out any aspect of the funded project.

7. To receive funding, a neighborhood group must be a nonprofit organization with tax-exempt 501(c)(3) status OR have made arrangements for a Fiscal Sponsor. (Please note: By law, churches and other religious organizations may not serve as fiscal sponsors for taxpayer-funded grants.)

Start-Up Groups:
Consideration will be given to applications from start-up groups. A start-up group is defined as a group of individuals from three or more unrelated households who wish to launch a resident-led, resident-controlled neighborhood organization within a neighborhood that currently has no active organization.
- The names and contact information for at least three individuals (three separate households) must accompany the application.
- Such application must detail how the group plans to address governance issues and other requirements stated in 1-7 above.
- Funding will be limited to $500 or less, and such funding must be applied to steps involved in creating a new neighborhood organization.

All neighborhoods are encouraged to apply for NSGP funding. However, if the total amount of funds requested exceeds available funds, the awards committee may consider giving preference to an otherwise qualified proposal from a low- or moderate income neighborhood over an otherwise qualified proposal from a high-income neighborhood.

Ineligible organizations:
Groups that are not eligible to apply include schools, city-wide organizations, healthcare facilities, religious institutions and organizations, political groups, governmental agencies and nonprofit organizations that are not resident-based. However, neighborhood groups may partner with other organizations that would otherwise be ineligible, such as youth service organizations.

For ineligible uses of funds, see page 6 of the Guidelines document.

Pre-proposal Conference:

Mandatory workshops will be:
Saturday, Apr 24, 10 a.m.-12 noon
Tuesday, Apr 27, 5-7 p.m.
Thursday, May 6, 6-8 p.m.

Neighborhood groups wishing to apply must send a representative to ONE of three pre-application workshops.

Pre-Application Information:

The general timeline is as follows:

- April/May - mandatory workshops
- July: If you wish to have someone in the Office of Neighborhoods review your application for completeness, please do so by having your application to the office no later than 4:30 p.m. on Monday, July 12. Applications received between Tuesday, July 13, and Friday, July 23, are NOT guaranteed a review.
- August/September: Members of a citizens evaluation committee, composed of current and former neighborhood leaders, conduct site visits to learn more about each applicant's proposed project.
- October: Recommendations announced, City Council consideration, and contracts signed for projects that will be carried out the following year.
- November: Contracts signed
- January 2022: Checks received by Non- Profits; Or Checks go to Fiscal Sponsor

Funds received from NSGP must be matched on a dollar-for-dollarbasis or equivalent with the value of donated goods and services, the value of volunteer labor, and money pledged from non-City-of-Knoxville sources. At least one third of the match must be in the form of volunteer labor provided by residents of the neighborhood.

Contact Information:

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

Applicants may submit the completed application by one of the following methods:

1. By email to:

Eden Slater


Debbie Sharp

2. By mail to:

Office of Neighborhoods
City of Knoxville
P.O. Box 1631
Knoxville, TN 37901

3. By hand to:

Office of Neighborhoods / Community Development Dept.
Room 546
City County Building
400 Main Street
Knoxville, TN 37902

For questions, contact Eden Slater at (865) 215-2113 or at the above email address.

Debbie Sharp
Neighborhood Coordinator
(865) 215-3232

URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

USA: Tennessee: City of Knoxville

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