apply now

Apply for a Grant from the Community Relief Fund

A note to nonprofits:
We are here to support you. We understand that during and immediately following a community crisis, plans and needs are evolving. We want to provide you with the flexibility you need in order to combat the challenges you are facing. Please contact us if funding priorities shift. We are happy to discuss funding that will be most helpful to you.

We know you are busy and challenged to meet the needs of our community. We ask regional nonprofit organizations to share their primary areas of concern related to the COVID-19 pandemic by completing our Community Needs Assessment. Your responses will help us determine effective and efficient grant funding priorities.

The Community Foundation is a devoted advocate for the vitality and well-being of the Rappahannock River region. Our mission is to build a flourishing philanthropic community.

The Community Relief Fund is accepting applications for immediate relief projects. These grants ensure rapid funding for organizations on the frontlines meeting basic needs for those affected by the pandemic. This critical funding will enable nonprofits to maintain operations and support the increased demand for services.

Requests being considered at this time are for immediate relief funding needs between now and June 30th, 2020.

Applicants are strongly encouraged to read and understand fund guidelines.

Read the grant guidelines here. Or download a .pdf copy.

If you have questions about The Community Relief Fund grants, please email Casey Hu at

About the Community Relief Fund

On October 2019, The Community Foundation Board of Governors established The Community Relief Fund to support disaster resiliency, response and/or recovery efforts in the counties of Caroline, King George, Spotsylvania and Stafford and the city of Fredericksburg.

Our goal is to work collaboratively with the nonprofit, government, philanthropic and private sectors to accelerate recovery for a thriving, resilient and even stronger Rappahannock River region. We will support organizations that are addressing immediate needs, longer-term effects of the pandemic and community recovery.

While the initial priority is to address immediate relief needs, additional funds will be released on a rolling basis as funding is available through outbreak and recovery phases of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Learn more about the Community Relief Fund.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is there a grant application deadline?

Applications for immediate relief will be accepted and reviewed on an ongoing, weekly basis to ensure resources are deployed rapidly where most needed. Applications are due by noon on Monday. Applications received after noon will be considered with the next week’s funding requests. If awarded funds, grantees must review, electronically sign and submit a Grant Agreement. Grant distribution payments will then be made electronically to the nonprofit through ACH payment. Please be certain The Community Foundation has the appropriate financial institution information in the grant application to ensure rapid payment.

Application DeadlineGrant Notification
Monday, April 13, 2020 by 12:00 PMMonday, April 20, 2020
Monday, April 20, 2020 by 12:00 PMMonday, April 27, 2020
Monday, April 27, 2020 by 12:00 PMMonday, May 4, 2020
Monday, May 4, 2020 by 12:00 PMMonday, May 11, 2020
Monday, May 11, 2020 by 12:00 PMMonday, May 18, 2020
Monday, May 18, 2020 by 12:00 PMMonday, May 25, 2020
Monday, May 25, 2020 by 12:00 PMMonday, June 1, 2020

Who will make grant award decisions for the Community Relief Fund?

The Community Foundation will convene the Community Relief Fund Disaster Response Committee to assess urgent needs, identify short-term gaps, and gather information that will inform longer-term recovery efforts. Grantmaking decisions will be overseen by the committee. Members of the Committee consist of foundation staff and board members serving on the foundation’s Donor Services Committee. 

Who can apply?

Grants from The Community Relief Fund will support nonprofit service providers or other charitable organizations serving the Rappahannock River region.

Grantees must:

  • Be classified by the Internal Revenue Service as a tax-exempt, 501(c)(3), nonprofit entity or must make use of a fiscal agent that has a 501(c)(3).
  • Be based in or serve those in the city of Fredericksburg and/or the counties of Caroline, King George, Spotsylvania and Stafford.
  • Provide direct support services to those affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.

In order to quickly deliver grants where they are most needed, the foundation has pre-screened area nonprofits that have received a grant from The Community Foundation in the last 5 years. New organizations will be swiftly vetted by foundation staff and board members.

The Community Foundation will not award grant support to organizations that, in their constitution, bylaws or practices, discriminate against a person or group because of age, race, national origin, ethnicity, gender, disability, sexual orientation or religious belief. Grantees, however, may target services to a particular population when the targeted groups require specialized programs to meet specific needs not shared by the general population.

What types of grants will be awarded?

We are particularly interested in projects and initiatives that support the recovery of the most vulnerable members of our community – those with the least resources and greatest needs, who have the most challenging time recovering post-disaster. We also seek to fill gaps – providing shorter-term, catalytic funding that is not available elsewhere and has the potential to leverage longer-term ongoing support. We want to ensure that our investments leverage – but do not duplicate – other funding streams and lead to significant and measurable positive benefit for impacted households and the region as a whole.

Priority will be given to nonprofits organizations with deep roots in the community that:

  • Provide human services and emergency assistance, as well as health and educational resources (e.g. food, shelter, transportation, living expenses, rent/utility assistance, etc.)
  • Serve vulnerable populations (e.g. children out of school, families without childcare, people who have lost income due to the pandemic, people who are experiencing homelessness or rapid rehousing, individuals without paid sick leave or health insurance, non-English speaking residents, senior citizens, etc.)

Organizations may use funding to support client needs, cover costs associated with decreased staffing or remote working due to quarantine/social distancing, provide mental health programming for clients or staff or coordinate/facilitate in-kind goods and donations to sites and organizations that provide human services and serve vulnerable populations. Other funding needs may be considered.

The Fund will be proactive and responsive, making grants of up to $15,000 on a rolling basis until June 30, 2020.

What are the restrictions?

Grants from the fund must be used for expenses incurred or planned for disaster response. The project must not supplant public funding or fill gaps that the government and/or private insurance have committed to provide. Grantees may not receive duplicate funding for requested support. 

The Community Relief Fund will not consider grant requests for fundraising events, political campaigns or lobbying, contributions to endowments, activities that are restricted to members of a faith community, annual fundraising campaigns or events, debt payments or legal settlements or reimbursements for completed projects, programs and equipment.

The fund will not grant directly to individuals.

Read complete Grant Guidelines.

COVID-19 Response    CLICK HERE     The Community Relief Fund