Grant Criteria


Organization Support Grants provide funding for general operating costs or capacity-building projects for nonprofits that serve Linn County, Iowa.


Organization Support Grants deadlines for 2024 are Friday, March 1 and Friday, September 13 at 4:30 p.m. Central Time.

Organization Eligibility

For General Operating Support

  • Must be based in Linn County
  • Be a nonprofit organization with current 501(c)(3) status
  • At least two years old (based on IRS letter of determination)
  • Operating budget is less than $5 million

For Capacity-building Projects:

  • Be a nonprofit organization with current 501(c)(3) status 
  • Operating budget less than $20 million
  • Organizations based outside of Linn County may only apply for the Linn County portion of projects

Information about organization capacity building and organizational assessment tools can be found in Nonprofit Network Resources.

Ineligible Organizations or Activities

  • Capital infrastructure [bricks and mortar] projects
  • Expenses that have already occurred or will occur during the grant review process (approximately 10 weeks after the grant application deadline) 
  • Fundraising events and activities
  • Program-specific staff training (may apply for Program Support Grant)
  • For capacity-building projects: overhead costs, including staff salary costs that are not directly related to project 
  • Religious activities or efforts supporting an organization’s core religious mission
    • Organizations with a core religious mission are not eligible for general operating support
  • Re-granting awarded funds to other nonprofits
  • Travel out of the region
  • Organizations that received an Organization Support Grant in the previous grant cycle
    • If an Organization Support Grant was awarded in the fall of the previous year, may not apply again until fall of the current year
    • If a time extension was requested to complete a previous grant, contact Program Officer to confirm eligibility

Maximum Request Amount

  • For organizations with operating budgets greater than $125,000, the maximum request amount is $25,000
  • Organizations with operating budgets less than $125,000 may request an amount up to 20% of their operating budget per request (rounded up to the nearest $100) 
    • The Community Foundation generally does not fund more than 20% of an organization’s operating budget between Program Support and Organization Support grants total in a calendar year   
  • Organizations that are primarily volunteer-driven and/or have a very small operating budget should contact the Program Officer to discuss the eligible amount for their specific situation

Duration of Grants

12 months

Grantmaking Equity Statement

The Community Foundation is committed to ensuring equity in our grantmaking strategy. Review the Grantmaking Equity Statement adopted by the Community Foundation’s Board of Directors here.

Application and Forms

NOTE: The Community Foundation maintains strict standards to uphold the integrity of the grantmaking process. Our conflict of interest policy applies to grant committees, board and staff requiring recusals in cases of conflict of interest. The Community Foundation review processes are methodical and transparent, with scoring tools for competitive grant applications available in the online applications.

Questions? Contact Us.

Photo of Casey Baustian

Casey Baustian, MSW
Program Officer


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