Purpose and Process
The mission of the Roscommon County Community Foundation (RCCF) is to enhance the quality of life for all citizens of Roscommon County, now and for generations to come. The Community Foundation helps people make a difference close to home by accepting contributions of all sizes. Each year, the Community Foundation makes grants to organizations, schools, and municipalities to make positive change in Roscommon County.
What is the purpose of the Urgent Needs Cycle?
The purpose of the Urgent Needs Cycle is to offer all eligible nonprofit partners the opportunity to apply for support through the Community Foundation to help friends and neighbors in greatest need. Individuals, couples, families, and businesses who advise funds at the Community Foundation (donor advisors) may choose to make grants through the cycle as well.
Eligible applicants include:
- 501(c)(3) tax-exempt nonprofit organizations
- All units of government
- All educational institutions (preschool through college)
- Organizations described above that serve Roscommon County residents
- Organizations that do not discriminate in hiring of staff or the provision of services
Eligible organizations must be current with follow up reports for all previous grant awards from RCCF and be in good standing with the IRS.
When is the application deadline?
The Urgent Needs Fund has a rolling deadline, so applications are accepted throughout the year.
What kinds of projects or programs are most likely to receive grant funding?
The Urgent Needs Cycle aims to attract requests that are focused on organizations helping Roscommon County residents access food, shelter, safety, healthcare, mental health services, utility assistance, transportation, and other basic and urgent needs, along with support for organizations need help with repairing, replacing, or maintenance of equipment to keep their business operational. Examples of grants include repairing or replacing doors and windows, etc. .
Successful requests may include any of the following characteristics: demonstrate collaboration, address new needs or try new approaches for existing needs, encourage people to help themselves, focus on prevention of problems, and/or avoid duplication of services.
Urgent Needs grant proposals will additionally be evaluated on the following specific criteria:
- Organization’s impact in the community
- Potential impact of funds on organization’s success and sustainability
- Directness and duration of funds on community and individuals in need
- Organization’s solvency and sustainability
- State of the community at time of request
What kinds of grants are generally not funded?
The Community Foundation’s Urgent Needs Cycle generally does not fund annual fundraising campaigns, political campaigns, deficit spending, sectarian projects, or services normally supported by tax dollars.
All grant applications require a cash contribution. How much is necessary?
It depends on the topic and scope of the project, but the expectation is that nonprofit partners will contribute to the budget of the project or program.
What size grants are available in the Urgent Needs Cycle?
This cycle encourages grants of all sizes. The request size should reflect the organization’s need for the project or program. Donor Advisors may also decide to contribute through their Donor Advised Funds. Community Foundation staff can provide additional guidance and information, if needed.
How does the Community Foundation make Urgent Needs Cycle grant decisions?
Community Foundation staff will review grant applications and recommend funding to the Board of Trustees. The Community Foundation will also share these opportunities with donor advisors, who may choose to make grant recommendations from their funds.
When will grant funding decisions be announced?
RCCF staff will generally notify grant applicants within a two-week period from the time the application is submitted.
What kind of follow up reporting is required?
The grant period is six months. A follow up report is available online to share about the successes of the program or project as well as the lessons learned. Providing photos is encouraged. Funded organizations will receive a reminder two weeks before the follow up report is due, then again one day prior to the due date, and once more if the report has not been submitted by the deadline. If the program or project is delayed or cannot be completed within the time period, the organization’s representative should call the Community Foundation.
Are there any other requirements?
The governing board of the organization is responsible for appropriate use of funds and project implementation.
- Applicants must be current with follow up reports for all previous grants in order to apply.
- Proposals from faith-based organizations must address community needs and
- Have a clearly demonstrated public benefit
- Be fully accessible to all people regardless of religious beliefs and lifestyle choices
- May NOT require anything in return for services provided. Examples: attending services or prayer groups and/or volunteering, etc.
How to Apply for an Urgent Needs Grant
Step 1: Contact Suzanne Luck to discuss your eligibility. If your organization’s need is a good fit for the Urgent Needs Cycle, you will be instructed to complete the online grant application. Email firstname.lastname@example.org to get started.
Step 2: Visit myrccf.org to access the online grant applications (“Accepting Applications” link for the Urgent Needs Grant Cycle)
Step 3: Complete the online grant application. Once you submit your application, you will receive immediate confirmation via email. You may be contacted with further clarification questions regarding your application and/or eligibility.
Step 4: The Community Foundation may share your applications with donor advisors to encourage grant support.
The Community Foundation will share news of the grant decisions within two weeks of you submitting the application. This will allow time for a decision to be made and for the RCCF Board to approve the funding. The grantee organization will receive notification detailing the funding decision.
Grant check requests will be submitted by grants staff and mailed out on the next check run date. Checks are cut every two weeks. Funds must be utilized in the manner described in the application within the grant period identified at the time of the award. Any unused grant dollars will be returned to the Fund.
A follow up report is required when the project is complete. If the project is completed early, the follow up report can be submitted sooner.