Description, Funding, and Eligibility

Capacity Building Grants (up to $10,000) respond to organizational needs and are designed to help improve a nonprofit's ability to fulfill its mission. 

Projects should support work in one of the following categories: Fundraising, Leadership, Communication, or Evaluation. Alternately, projects can meet emergency organizational needs that are critical for an organization to continue fulfilling its mission.

Projects should demonstrate a measurable change during the grant period: i.e. increase fundraising by 15% by hiring a fundraising consultant and making suggested improvements, OR create a program evaluation framework and apply this structure to evaluate two programs by July 2021. 

Funding Priorities

This grant program focuses on increasing an organization's capacity in the following ways: 

  • Fundraising: purchasing a donor database or other CRM tool, hiring a fundraising consultant, or developing online giving. Note: We do not fund capital campaigns through this application. 
  • Leadership: board development, professional development, or strategic planning
  • Communication: website redevelopment, internal communications, or communications plan development 
  • Evaluation: Impact measurement or program tracking
  • Emergency Organizational Needs: unexpected expenses for which an organization was unable to prepare 

Organizations may receive up to $10,000 through the Capacity Building Grant program within a 365 day period.

In order to receive a grant through this program, organizations must also have:

  • An IRS Letter of Determination that shows the organization is a 501(c)3 public charity 
  • At least one current program with local impact in one of the following counties: Sarasota, Manatee, Charlotte, or DeSoto
  • An approved/current profile in The Giving Partner, a powerful, searchable online database with over 700 profiles of charitable organizations serving Sarasota, Manatee, Charlotte, and DeSoto counties.


Apply and Review Process

Review Process

Applications that have been submitted by the 15th of the month will be reviewed in that month’s cycle. Applicants can expect a decision on their application by the 15th of the following month.

Example: An application submitted on September 14 will be notified by October 15. An application submitted on September 20 will be notified by November 15.

Please Note: Applications will not be reviewed in December (due to the holidays) or June (due to the close of our fiscal year).

Grant Reporting

Grant Reporting

As a grantee of the Community Foundation, we have grant reporting expectations and requirements to showcase the results of the great work you are accomplishing with this funding.

Share Your Story of Impact

Already received a Capacity Building Grant within the last year? Share how this funding contributed to your organization's work and success within our community. 

What can be a Story of Impact?
  • Press Release
  • Blogs
  • Videos
  • Testimonials
  • Articles
  • Podcasts / Audio Recordings

Please reference our Press Kit to help draft your message and coordinate review with Hunter Carpenter, Manager of Communications and Marketing, at 

Looking for examples? Check out the Stories of Impact below shared by our Capacity Building Grantees.

Resources for Grantees

Eligibility Requirements

Press Kit for Grantees

Additional Questions?

If you have questions about the Capacity Building grant cycles that were not answered on this page, please view one of our past information sessions or bring them to an upcoming information session with our team. Videos and registration for upcoming information sessions below.

View Past Information Sessions

Register for an Upcoming Information Session

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Need Assistance?

Angelica Hull

Grants, Manager