Grant Writing

Grant Writing and Grant Opportunities

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Our campus ministries have four common sources of funding: BHECM campus minister salary grants, financial support from district churches and church groups, donations from friends and alumni and fund raisers.  However, as we move from a traditional to a missional approach to campus ministry, additional funding sources may be needed. The purpose of this web page is to to develop grant writing expertise and to provide links to grant opportunities that are available through the Virginia Annual Conference, the United Methodist Church and beyond.

Grant Writing

A Guide to Proposal Planning and Writing by Jeremy Minter and Lynn Minter. This 26 page guide contains suggestions on how you can plan and write successful grant proposals.  (Link)  Here is a  copy of supporting PowerPoint slides (Link)

Grant Writing: Nuts and Bolts – A presentation by Dr. Joseph Holland, Assistant Professor, University of Southern Mississippi, for the American Society of Public Administration (ASPA) Professional Development Seminar is at this (Link).  There is also a supporting book written by Cynthia Carr “The Nuts and Bolts of Grant Writing.”  The author  shares her best practices for planning, writing, and winning research grants based on her own experience submitting more than 300 grant proposals and securing millions of dollars in awards.  The book is insightful, innovative, and informative.

Grant Writing Resources

The Foundation Center  (
The Foundation Center is a robust source of information on philanthropy, foundations, and grants. You can find training in grant writing here, information on how foundations work, and information on local foundation libraries.

Foundation Directory Online  ( The Foundation Directory is an excellent resource for searching foundation grant opportunities. The Foundation Directory now offers free 990 searches. For more information on 990s, see The Nuts and Bolts of Grant Writing!

Guidestar  (
Guidestar is a robust source of information on nonprofits, which include foundations. Search here to find similar organizations to yours, or to look for potential partners.

Grant Opportunities

Virginia Annual Conference Grant Opportunities. For these types of grants, campus ministries would partner with a local church and other groups to provide the necessary structure. There are:

  • Special Program Grants are designed for programs outside of normal conference and local church funding processes. They are intended to provide funding for the first three years of innovative programs of tangible and caring outreach that is beyond a local church’s current financial resources.
  • Sustaining Program Grants designed for programs outside of normal conference and local church funding processes. They are intended to provide funding for the sustaining of innovative programs of tangible and caring outreach that is beyond a local church’s current financial resources. They are for churches of all ethnic groups and should help the church requesting the funding to relate to the ethnic groups within its community.
  • Ministry Accelerator Pilot – The Grants Subcommittee of the Common Table is piloting a new process, also called a “ministry accelerator” alongside our existing process that grants funds AND provides mentoring support to help implement their innovative ideas that address mission needs in their communities. The “ministry accelerator” pilot will give grants recipients, who choose to participate in the pilot, support in finance/budgeting, volunteer recruitment/retention, long-range planning, and other areas that contribute to the impact and sustainability of a ministry in addition to their grant award. A presentation by Rev. Chris Bennett on the pilot program is  attached.
  • Peace With Justice Grant is designed to assist churches in the   “ministry of  peace, justice, and hope to overcome poverty and disease, environmental degradation, and the proliferation of weapons and violence” Application can be found at:

 UMC grants for ministries with young people: The funding opportunities are for creative, innovative approaches to ministries for, with, and by young people. The purpose of these grants is to fund dynamic, creative ministries with young people. The project or program must be driven in design and implemented by young people (ages 12-30) within and outside the church. The project must have a strong biblical/theological foundation. The project/program must reflect a diversity of racial, gender, and class differences both in its leadership and in its desired impact within the Church and community

The Foundation for Evangelism ( FFE) announced a new pilot grant program designed to impact ministry on college campuses in the United States  Making Disciples on the College Campus…a ministry impacting young people grant provides funding for innovative campus-focused ministry that engages, forms and grows disciples of Jesus Christ on the college campus.

The General Board of Higher Education and Ministry (GBHEM) works to create disciples of Jesus Christ by offering grants to those who qualify.

Ethnic in-Service Training (EIST) Grant – The United Methodist Church allocates part of the World Communion Sunday offerings to GBHEM for ethnic leadership development. As part of its ongoing mission to nurture United Methodist leaders – both lay and clergy – GBHEM uses those funds to award Ethnic In-Service Training Grants. These grants are awarded in sums up to $10,000 and are given to programs designed to bolster recruitment, training and retention of ethnic persons for leadership positions at every level of the church and its ministry.(

Rule 2 Grant Program – The Rule 2 Grant is a GBHEM matching grant that supports collegiate ministry internships designed to further the reach of a collegiate ministry within, or beyond, its campus context. Selected recipients will be awarded a maximum of $3,000 per grant, and these funds must be matched by an equal amount (up to a maximum match of $3,000). Grant funding must be used to support new student internships that create vital leadership with a new program, special event, local church and/or community-based engagement of some kind (

Lilly Endowment: (Link) In keeping with the wishes of the three founders, Lilly Endowment exists to support the causes of religion, education and community development. The Endowment affords special emphasis to projects that benefit young people and promote leadership education and financial self-sufficiency in the nonprofit, charitable sector.