Religious and spiritual organizations often provide programs and services and often a needed life-line to the population they serve, and therefore turn to private foundations and the federal government for much needed grants for churches.
Funding for religious organizations, also called church grants, are widely available from both the private sector and the federal government. These grants for churches are available for furthering programs and establishing new services; it’s strong misconception that grants for churches are available to start new congregations, purchase new choir robes or refurbish old and worn pews. Church grants, like all other available grants, are available to further a specific cause which serves public good. Many times grants for churches are awarded to 501-C-3 organizations owned and managed by the religious organizations.
When searching for federal government church grants, your very first stop should be the federal government funding portal at Grants.gov. There, you can do an advanced funding search under ‘for profit organizations other than small business’ and ‘nonprofits having 501-C-3 IRS status”. A recent combined search for available grants for churches and funding opportunities for 501-C-3 nonprofits returned over sixty pages of results. That translates into millions of dollars of available church grants.
While the United States federal government may see the benefit of services and programs provided by religious organizations, the private foundational sector keeps a tighter rein on it money when it comes to grants for churches. The Abell-Hanger Foundation has given more than 160 million dollars in grants for churches since their inception. The Cora Foundation, a private family foundation established in 1997 as a non-profit corporation, provides church grants and financial assistance within the limits of its budget to Christian based organizations within the United States. The Ambrose Monell Foundation gave over 10 million dollars in church grants in the year 2010 alone.
Other avenues religious organizations seeking grants for churches are corporate foundations. The Fieldstone Foundation was created by the Fieldstone Corporate Group of Companies to help improve and sustain the fabric of communities in Orange and San Diego counties in Southern California. Started by none-other than Henry Ford himself, the Ford Foundation offers church grants in the areas of human rights, social justice and metropolitan economic opportunity. Glaser Family Charitable Foundation, which is a corporate foundation offshoot, provides hundreds of thousands of dollars in grants for churches in support of various interests.
Often a life-line to the population and the congregation they serve, even in these harsh economic times the federal government and private foundations alike still offer grants for churches. Your first stop should be the federal government grant application portal at Grants.gov. Don’t forget that private and corporate funding is also a viable alternative when looking for available church grants.