Standard Capacity Building Grant (CBG) Program

Overview of the Standard Capacity Building Grant (CBG)  

The Standard CBG grants are intended to help nonprofits within the MMF focus areas make long-term improvements in their management, governance, or organizational capacity.  Applications for capacity building activities could include:

  • Strategic planning
  • Financial assessment, planning & management, including cash flow, budget development, financial controls
  • Evaluation assessment and planning
  • Program Development
  • Communications and marketing, including Website development, public relations, brand development, use of social media
  • Resource development and fundraising
  • Human resources, including professional development, succession planning, staffing structure, assessment, and retention
  • Information systems management, including technology enhancements – not hardware
  • Board development including assessment, recruitment, training, and structuring
  • Restructuring and building relationships with other nonprofit organizations to strengthen service delivery, merge/closure, share resources, etc.
  • Leadership development including executive coaching

Standard CBG Application Process:

Before applying, the nonprofit leadership staff and board should first discuss the grant purpose, expectations and process for requesting capacity building support. Applicants vet and select their own consultants before writing the application.  MMF has a policy not to recommend any one consultant. If help is needed to identify additional candidates, a list of professionals who have worked with other MMF grantees can be provided.  Please reach out to MMF staff in advance with any questions.  A preview of the application form is available here.     

The Standard CBG application requirements include:

1.      Clearly explain how the CBG will strengthen the organizational ability to support those  served within the selected MMF focus area.

2.      Applications are due at the regular MMF Responsive Grant cycle deadlines of August 1st at 11:59 p.m. or February 1st at 11:59 p.m.

3.      All CBG applications must demonstrate vetting more than one consultant and include the Request for Proposal (RFP) and the selected consultant’s proposed budget, workplan and timeline. The maximum hourly rate for consultants is $150.00. If the rate is higher, MMF recommends the applicant cover the cost difference.  A toolkit from the Grand Victoria Foundation is available to assist with putting together an RFP if this is a new process for you.

4.      The CBG award limit is up to $25,000 for a one year grant period.  This can be combined with a responsive grant application, however, the total amount requested of MMF in one year must not exceed $50,000.

5.      For all requests other than strategic planning, applications must include a copy of their strategic plan completed within the previous twenty-four (24) months

6.      If requesting funds to conduct a strategic plan, MMF highly recommends an organizational assessment be completed first unless one has recently been completed.  Applications for the COAR grants are open on a rolling basis and can be found on our website

7.      Maximum annual budget of $5 million or less

8.      Minimum annual budget of $75,000 per year for the last three (3) years

9.      If approved, payment is made at the start of the grant period

Eligible Expenses:

Eligible organizations must have received at least one year of MMF grant funding.

The Standard CBG Program is intended to provide funding support for consultant fees and directly related costs, e.g., material resources, travel, overnight lodging that is essential to the project. Support can include training fees, information technology, staffing, and other costs directly related to capacity building activities.

 

Ineligible Expenses: Examples of expenses that are not eligible for support under this program are as follows:    

  • Engagement of consultant to implement programming related to the project
  • Rental Fees
  • Lodging for Employees or Board Members
  • Software that is more than 15% of total amount requested. 
  • Printing of general program-related materials, i.e., annual reports
  • Consultant travel from outside Missouri
  • Renovations or capital improvements
  • Financial deficits
  • One-time events that do not build long-term capacity (such as fundraising events or conferences).

The Standard CBG Application is available electronically as an online application form (preview here; login to complete the application here).

Attachments – The following documents will be uploaded in the online application:

  • IRS 501(c)(3) designation letter
  • Annual Organizational Budget
  • Most recent financial statement for the past two years
  • Most recent Strategic Plan
  • Include the selected consultant proposal, workplan and budget for the requested project

Status Report Questions

1. Please explain how this capacity building grant strengthened your overall organizational capacity to fulfill your mission.  How will this experience increase your organizational effectiveness and functioning to serve those experiencing poverty?

2. How has this capacity building experience impacted the leadership skills of the Board and Staff?

3. Please upload the final product as a result of this Capacity Building Project (ex: strategic plan, development plan).

4. How would you describe your experience with the consultant? Are you pleased with the final product? Would you recommend this consultant to another organization?

5. If results were not as expected, what challenges did you face and what strategies were used to address the challenges?

The report will also include upload of financial statements showing how grant funds were expended and current financial statements for the organization.