Insider’s look: How CFMC funds grants

Ever wondered how community foundations fund grants? Or why CFMC only funds nonprofits or civic organizations rather than people in need? How does CFMC know who or what to fund? You asked, we listened. Join us, as we give you an insider’s look on grantmaking in Morgan County and at your Community Foundation of Morgan County.

Let’s start from the beginning. What is grantmaking and how does it work?

Grantmaking in a nutshell is distributing philanthropic funds from donations or funds established at CFMC and are awarded to nonprofits or civic organizations who serve Morgan County. Residents create legacy gifts to either support an organization or a field of interest through grantmaking.

General donations, no matter the size, are deposited into our Impact fund. These pooled donations fund CFMC’s three grant cycles. All these efforts, whether by an individual’s fund, or someone’s donation, stay right here in Morgan County.

Organizations applying for a CFMC grant apply through an all-encompassing application process and include information such as a project narrative with data, a sustainable plan with financials to show the organization is in good standing, and the project’s expected outcomes.

Why is grantmaking only for nonprofits or civic organizations and not for individual people?

Community Foundations operate under the strict guidelines of 501c IRS standards, and therefore, grantmaking is restricted to nonprofits and civic organizations in good standing with the IRS and Secretary of State in Indiana.

The truth is public foundations like community foundations are not permitted to award individual people. By doing so, this creates taxable income from the client needing services per IRS standards.  Therefore, we support the organizations who serve Morgan County residents in need. Luckily, there are several options for residents in need of financial assistance. We encourage you to call 2-1-1 for those connections.

How does CFMC know who or what to fund?

This is a great question! And we love sharing the magic of collaboration and effective communication amongst our county partners. CFMC offers three kinds of grants: Impact, Thrive, and Capacity (read more here:  We announce through various communication channels that grant applications are soon to open or close. You can look for these announcements on our website at, on Facebook, through Martinsville and Mooresville Chamber of Commerce announcements, and in various community collaboration meetings.

We pride ourselves on coming alongside our communities and nonprofits. 22 years of relationships, community needs assessments, members of community coalitions and site-visits with our grantees have allowed us the privilege to have a solid pulse on our communities’ greatest needs. We know they are ever evolving, and we know our non-profits always rise to the occasion.

CFMC funds only the most impactful, sustainable projects within the county. CFMC conducts site visits for funded projects and asks for an interim and final report to ensure the funded project is successful, and if not, we work with the grantee to elevate the project.

In Morgan County, it’s all about teamwork, collaboration, and community first. Every dollar donated to CFMC funds our county’s most pressing needs, and we hope this insider’s look gives you some understanding into how grantmaking is done at CFMC so you too can be a hero in your community.

Make an impact and help us grow our grants at

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