Catholic Charities Accepting Applications from Nonprofits for Economic Development and Community Development Grants: Grants range from $25,000 to $75,000

Posted 10/07/2015

Catholic Charities of Tennessee is accepting applications from Middle Tennessee nonprofit organizations for economic development and community development grants worth $25,000 to $75,000 to be awarded in 2016 by the Catholic Campaign for Human Development (CCHD).

The pre-application and application process runs until November 1, 2015. For more information, go to Pre-applications for a CCHD grant are prepared online through the same site.

Many Nashville area agencies have received these grants over the past 40 years, according to Bill Sinclair, Catholic Charities of Tennessee executive director and CCHD director for the Diocese of Nashville. Area grantees in recent years include Workers' Dignity Project, Tennessee Health Care Campaign, Tennessee Immigration and Refugee Rights Coalition, Home Safe, and Tennessee Disability Coalition.

"The CCHD grant program offers a wonderful opportunity to Middle Tennessee nonprofits to enhance their efforts to overcome poverty and injustice," said Fran Rajotte, Catholic Charities' director of Advocacy and Social Concerns.

"CCHD has worked for more than 40 years to overcome poverty and injustice nationally. Catholic Charities of Tennessee does so regionally through Catholic Charities USA and in partnership with the Nashville Poverty Initiative. The grant program is one way that CCHD partners with local community programs in this cause."

Qualifying organizations must have 501(c)3 nonprofit status, agree with the moral and social teaching of the Catholic Church and respect life in all stages from conception to natural death. They and their partnering organizations must not foster activities such as abortion, euthanasia, or anything that disrespects in any way the life and dignity of the human person. They must also have an established Board of Trustees and a local director. The Board mix must have at least 50% of its members living on low-income or in poverty.

Once an organization's pre-application is approved to apply for the funding, a detailed and lengthy application process begins. Catholic Charities will review submissions and then schedule site visits by March 2016. Catholic Charities will prepare a findings report to be reviewed with CCHD. If both organizations approve the submission, a grant amount is agreed upon and the paperwork is submitted to Bishop David Choby, Diocese of Nashville for his approval. It is then forwarded to the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops for a vote at its June meeting. Winners will be notified in summer 2016 and grant checks distributed in fall 2016.

If approved, an organization can apply for a grant each year for six years. After the six years, there is a waiting period of three years before that organization can re-apply. If you think your organization may qualify and would like to discuss this before applying, please contact Fran Rajotte at

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