Grants for Nonprofit Organizations

Competitive Grants are awarded to 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organizations and 170(c)(1) governmental units serving Middlesex County towns. Grant proposals should address a need within identified Focus Areas and demonstrate a positive impact on the organization, project, community or persons served.

Areas of Need / Impact

Areas of Need/Impact have been established by donors and the Community Foundation’s Board of Directors. While some variation is possible because of funds available for grant making, the areas of need / impact are:

  • Community Enrichment (Arts/Culture/History)
  • Community Health (Health/Medical/Hospital Care)
  • Economic Security/Economic Opportunity
  • Economic Development
  • Education (Community Wide/Schools)
  • Environment/Animal Welfare and Protection
  • Public / Social Benefit (Civic Improvement/ Social Services)
  • Recreation
  • Women and Girls
  • At-risk Boys & Young Men
  • Seniors and Veterans

Grant Ranges

Community Foundation competitive grants typically range from a minimum of $500 to a maximum of $5,000 in the General Application Process.

Other Funds may choose to offer a higher maximum award which will be included in the information session. The Community Foundation does not explicitly prohibit previous grant recipients from applying for the same program in the current funding cycle; subsequent funding will be considered, but is not guaranteed.

Types of Funding Requests Considered

Organizations are limited to one (1) application per grant calendar year as the primary applicant (unless otherwise noted).

Organizations may be collaborators/partners on another organization’s application and submit an independent application, as long as the request is not part of the collaborative request. In such cases, the organization would be required to submit their own application for a program or project, in order to ensure the funding request is not part of the collaborative/partner project.

501(c)(3) nonprofit organizations

501(c)(3) nonprofit organizations may apply for General Operating support regardless of where they are headquartered and what their need is (ie program/project vs capacity building vs general operating) as long as the requested funding will be utilized for services and programs directly impacting Middlesex County (application narrative must provide specific details of the organization’s work in our footprint).

Schools / Healthcare / Government

Groups under fiscal sponsorship, Government entities, School Districts, and Health Care Organizations (i.e., Hospital-managed programs) will apply for Project support for programs that are budget-enhancing (not budget-replacing); School districts will be limited to a maximum of two applications in any one funding calendar year.

Religious Organizations

Faith-Based Organizations will apply for Project support for projects/programs that do not require adherence to religious doctrine to participate and are open to all.


Collaborations will apply for Project support.

Additional Information

Grants Program Grant Timeline Marketing Guidelines

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Funding Priorities

The Community Foundation gives priority to grant proposals that:

  • Address a documented need or concern within an interest area;
  • Build the capacity of community organizations and/or programs that help individuals to help themselves;
  • Foster cooperative approaches to community issues through collaborations based on shared visions and mutual responsibility;
  • Serve as a catalyst for attracting other funding resources; and
  • Build infrastructure within the organization in order to meet its mission.

The Community Foundation will not award grants to:

  • Organizations that, in their constitution, bylaws or practice, discriminate against a person or group on the basis of age, race, national origin, ethnicity, gender, disability, sexual orientation or identification, political affiliation, or religious belief;
  • Staff positions for which long-term funding has not been established or planned or hazard pay expenses;
  • Programs or materials that would normally be included in the regular operating budget for municipal/government agencies or schools;
  • Capital Improvement Projects and Building Programs;
  • Annual fundraising campaigns or event sponsorships;
  • Initiatives that regrant CFMC funds to other organizations;
  • Endowments, reserve funds, capital campaigns, or annual fund drives;
  • Recouping lost revenue which occurred during the current or previous calendar year;
  • Payment of debt or legal settlements or Repayment of SBA, PPP, or other COVID-19 related loans;
  • Political or partisan purposes, campaigns, or lobbying activities;
  • Projects that exclusively serve religious purposes, although religious organizations providing non-religious community services will be considered.
  • Grants will not be made to individuals.

Grant Acceptance Requirements

Organizations awarded grants must agree to and comply with the Community Foundation’s Nondiscrimination Policy and Grant Agreement Certification.

Nondescrimination Policy Grant Agreement Certification

Grant Evaluations

A grant evaluation form must be submitted for all competitive grants awarded. Nonprofits considering submitting an application for the current grant cycle need to insure all prior grant evaluations have been submitted. Forms are available online.

The Competitive Grant Application Cycle opens annually in August and applications are due late September and again in late April. Grant Applications will be available on the Grants Program page.

Grants Program Grant Evaluation Forms


we’re here to help you!

If you need further information about the CFMC grant making process, are unsure of your grant evaluation status, or if your program or project is incomplete and you have questions regarding your grant evaluation email or call Thayer Talbott, Vice President & COO, or Mary Dutton, Programs & Communications Coordinator, at 860.347.0025.

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Middletown Commission on the Arts

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