Saturday, April 2, 2011

March 2011 Update

Through our grant-making we intend to forge meaningful relationships among lesbian and gay and non-lesbian and non-gay people, while strengthening organizational capabilities to serve our community. 
A recent study of the 39 largest LGBTQ organizations in the country shows that 96% of us give less than $35 per year to “our cause”. Less than 15,000 members nationally gave more than $1,000 to support our campaign for equality.  While we remain steadfast in our goal of 300 members in our giving circle, these stats show how far we have to go in building a resource base for the organizations we support.  
Structure of the Circle: The 300 Fund was established as a part of the Community Foundation of Western North Carolina, which handles the tax deductible contributions, ensuring that 100% of your gift will support philanthropy that builds a better community for us all. The fund is managed by a Board of Directors, open to any member of The 300, and charged with reviewing grants, and building the membership.
Since beginning operation in 2009, we have made slow but steady progress.  We have brought together three dozen donor/members and a small group of dedicated volunteers, established operational guidelines and ethical policies to guide our work, and developed a grant application process.  Using this process and member gifts, The Board has successfully managed three rounds of giving totaling nearly $30,000!  Considering current economic reality, an achievement of which we can all be very proud.

Yours truly,

The 300 Giving Circle Board of Directors

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Grant Application Guidelines

The 300 Application Guidelines
Individual and Partnering Organization Grants up to $5,000

The 300 Fund of the Community Foundation of Western North Carolina grants are awarded to encourage organizations to serve the lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans-gendered and questioning (LGBTQ, or, Lesbian and Gay) community either directly or in partnership with other organization(s). Collaborations will broaden the support and affirmation of the LGBTQ community by building bridges throughout Western North Carolina.

The Society of the 300 (the Fund), a charitable gift fund of the Community Foundation of Western North Carolina, will award grants of up to $5,000 that may be used to support programs, projects and events that address the mission and vision of the Fund.


Completed application must be received by 5:00 PM, April 22, 2011
Notification of grant awards  1st Week of June, 2011
* Incomplete applications or applications received after this deadline will not be considered.

The 300 Fund of the Community Foundation of Western North Carolina

The Fund was established to enhance the quality of life of residents of Western North Carolina, and to positively impact the chronic under-funding of LGBTQ programs. National data reveals that less than half of a percent of total philanthropic giving goes to meet the needs of the LGBTQ community. This data indicates that LGBTQ organizations operate on a shoestring, with many LGBTQ-serving organizations operating on less than $1,000 annually and many more organizations having no budget at all. Educating the citizens of Western North Carolina about these needs is a top priority of the Fund.

Communities and cities that are open, affirming and tolerant of all types of people attract and retain creative, talented workers who help an economy to thrive1. Through our grant making, we intend to forge meaningful relationships among lesbian and gay and non-lesbian and non-gay people, expanding overall resources for LGBTQ members of our community. As evidenced by the large number of LGBTQ individuals in our region, we know our mission and work is crucial to the health and vitality of Western North Carolina.

LGBTQ as well as non-LGBTQ organizations are eligible for Fund program grants. Forging relationships with the non-gay, allied community is a driving force for the Fund, to make real our mission of enhancing the quality of life for all in Western North Carolina. The Fund grants program is an opportunity for the nonprofit organizations, schools, and congregations to respond to the vision of the Fund: Cultivating one community that supports lesbian and gay individuals and families.

1 The Rise of the Creative Class, by Richard Florida.

  • Proposed initiatives should respond to and promote the Vision of the Fund: Cultivating one community that supports lesbian and gay individuals and families.
  • Special consideration will be given to proposals that
  • Build understanding and appreciation as well as promote value of inclusion within the organization’s circle of influence, especially LGBTQ populations not previously targeted.
  • Cultivate opportunities for leadership by contributions of LGBTQ people.
  • Engage and include all people from diverse backgrounds and sexual orientation in programs, services, and organizational values.
  • Funding will not be provided for the same project for more than two (2) years.

  • Capital campaigns and endowment funds
  • Strategic Planning in “ordinary course of business”. (Consideration may be given to requests for new lines of business, innovative programs, and other unique opportunities.)
  • Networking infrastructure, hardware and software for computers or other similar forms of technology
  • Publications and books
  • Projects that promote political or religious views
  • Organizations for re-granting purposes
  • Grants to individuals
  • Debt-retirement funding
  • Activities prior to grant decision
  • Projects typically the funding responsibility of federal, state or local government
  • Duplication of existing programs or services by new nonprofit organizations in geographic locations with established programs or services.

  • Applicants may request up to $5,000 for a program, project or event that meets the priorities of the Fund.
  • Applicants must be eligible organizations, including 501(c)(3) nonprofit organizations, congregations, governmental and educational institutions.
  • The program or initiative must serve one or more of the 17 counties of Western North Carolina.
  • All grant recipients are expected to provide a written evaluation of the project and an accounting of grant expenses upon project completion or by any other date specified by the Fund.
  • Any grant funds not spent for the approved purposes by the date specified must be returned to the Fund.


The 300 Fund
Attn: Becky Davis
The Community Foundation of Western North Carolina
The BB&T Building
One Pack Square, Suite 1600
Asheville, North Carolina 28801

The Fund has limited discretionary funds to support all requests: therefore, many exemplary proposals cannot be funded. Because of the volume of requests, we cannot provide written feedback on unfunded proposals.

To conduct a fair and ethical grants program, a Conflict of Interest Policy is followed and requires that volunteers and/or staff not participate in the grant process for an organization with which they are affiliated. Please do not lobby Board or Grant Committee members on behalf of your organization.

For questions, contact Becky Davis at the Community Foundation of Western North Carolina