Love Where You Live

What makes residents love where they live? What draws people to a place and keeps them there?

Connected Communities grants fund innovative ideas from nonprofit organizations that will further knit our community together. The Foundation aims to inspire organizations to engage and invest in our community and build on the community’s existing assets.

Central Carolina Community Foundation will provide challenge grants for innovative ideas in the following focus areas, identified by the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation and Gallup as the three most important elements for an attractive community: Welcoming Community, Vibrant Social Offerings, and Superb Public Spaces.

Learn More About Current Connected Communities Projects

3 Focus Areas

  • Welcoming Community: How welcoming is our community to different types of people?
  • Vibrant Social Offerings: Where can people in our community meet each other?
  • Superb Public Spaces : How can we improve the physical beauty of our community?
Central Carolina Community Foundation is working to make the Midlands more connected, vibrant, compassionate and engaged.

What We Fund

We Are Looking for Ideas That …

  • Enhance community connections in the Midlands.
  • Incorporate novel approaches to creating a vibrant, connected community.
  • Raise public awareness of the area/region.
  • Provide a measurable level of community involvement (volunteers or participants).
  • Are new or expansion projects. Current programs from organizations will not be considered.
  • Promote philanthropy across our region.

If your project/program relates to our criteria, we encourage you to apply.

Applicants are strongly encouraged to thoroughly review the Grant Guidelines prior to applying.


Eligibility Requirements

  • Organizations must be determined as a charitable organization under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code, public entities or other charitable, educational or faith-based organizations.
  • Organizations must be physically located in one of the following 11 counties in the Midlands: Calhoun, Clarendon, Fairfield, Kershaw, Lee, Lexington, Newberry, Orangeburg, Richland, Saluda and Sumter
  • Organizations must register for and participate in Midlands Gives

Grant Amount

Applicants may request up to $75,000.

Funds are only available in the form of challenge grants. The challenge portion must generate an additional 30% of the award from the Community Foundation. For example, if your organization is awarded $50,000, you must match that award with an additional $15,000. The Foundation will not accept a transfer of internal funds or in-kind contributions. Participation in Midlands Gives can be used to assist in meeting the match goal.


Grant Process Timeline

  • September 1-30 — Letters of Intent accepted
  • October 30 — Organizations invited to submit full application
  • Late November (exact date TBD) — Invited full applications due
  • Mid-December (exact date TBD) — Organizations notified of application status
  • January — Finalist Presentations
  • Mid-February – Grantees notified
  • Project Timeline – March 1 – February 28

Submit Letter of Intent