Responding to Community Needs

Spartanburg County Foundation Grantmaking Process Explained…

The Foundation’s fundholders respond to community needs daily, providing grants to community nonprofit organizations providing direct services to Spartanburg County residents.  The Foundation’s Trustees distribute grants through two competitive cycles annually. The first round of grants has recently been approved. Details about the specific needs these grants addressed will be shared in our upcoming Nonprofit Needs newsletter, scheduled for release in late July.  You’ll also find detailed information about other grant recipients in our Annual Report. We appreciate the enthusiastic response from many fundholders and donors who have indicated their preferred delivery method for receiving the report. Look for it in your email inbox or mailbox later this month.


When Foundation staff asked attendees of our Annual Meeting what they would like to learn more about, one area of interest was the specific process used by the Foundation to award grants to nonprofit organizations during our grant cycles.  

Trustees work with the Foundation’s finance team to set the amount allocated from the Community Impact fund and other unrestricted funds for grantmaking each year and follow a grantmaking strategy to award two types of grants based upon funds available:  

Continuous Improvement Grants of up to $25,000 focus on services provided to residents to help them reach their human potential with programming to improve quality of life, educational achievement, and economic mobility.

 Nonprofit Effectiveness Grants of up to $10,000 are focused on strengthening the internal capacity or infrastructure of community-based organizations serving Spartanburg County residents.

The Process

  1. Foundation staff review grant proposals submitted by nonprofit organizations to ensure that they meet application criteria and Grant Guidelines before presenting the applications to the Grants Review Committee. The due diligence process includes visits to nonprofit organizations. 
  1. The Committee then evaluates proposals based on a scoring rubric to determine the application’s strategic alignment with the Foundation’s criteria and community needs. 
  1. The Committee makes grant recommendations to the Foundation’s Trustees, who determine the final distribution of grants from the Community Impact Fund.  

The window for grant applications for grants that will be awarded this fall has just closed. Learn more about the Foundation’s grantmaking process by watching a one-hour webinar produced each year, or by visiting our updated Grant Opportunities page

We want to give more. We aim to increase our impact by growing the Foundation’s Community Impact Fund, thereby expanding our ability to award grants. Stay tuned for updates on our efforts to strengthen this fund and enhance our support for Spartanburg County residents.