The Fund for Chattanooga
The Fund for Chattanooga is the living legacy of generous Chattanoogans who knew that our city would grow and evolve in ways they could never have imagined.
Through planned and current gifts, they helped create a permanent fund. It is through this endowed fund that we make community-led grants and support the essential work in this community to both care for our most vulnerable and invest in the kinds of systemic changes that will result in greater opportunity for all of our neighbors.
Our approach to grantmaking is rooted in community. We are committed to addressing root causes and the systems that perpetuate inequity while also being responsive to the needs of our most vulnerable neighbors. We’re proud to work alongside so many dedicated nonprofits in that work.
List of Fund for Chattanooga grantees:
Caring and Inclusive Grantmaking Priorities
In light of the continued challenges due to the pandemic, the Community Foundation has suspended capacity building and multi-year funding for 2021. During the Fall 2021 Grant Cycle, the Community Foundation is offering $15,000 general operating grants to assist our nonprofit partners who are working to help our neighbors navigate difficult circumstances and regain stability.
The Foundation will consider applications from organization’s whose primary mission is focused on one or more of the following:
Organizations primarily serving Hamilton County residents will be eligible to apply. Priority will be given to organizations that have been negatively impacted financially by the pandemic.
- 01Meeting basic human needs including: food, financial assistance, and shelter
- 02Creating opportunities for individuals to access living wage jobs
- 03Supporting affordable housing
- 04Providing affordable healthcare
- 05Supporting mental wellbeing
Our grants process is streamlined, simple, and built with nonprofits in mind.
The Foundation accepts unsolicited proposals once per year for either capacity building or multi-year needs.
Contact our staff
Reach out to our Director of Community Impact team to talk through proposal idea.Contact us
Create a profile
Our staff will email you an invitation to create a profile.Create a profile
Complete your applicationOur staff will review your application and contact you with next steps.
Staff may decline the application, defer the application to a future cycle, or schedule a site visit or call to learn more about the organization. Applicants then revise their application and submit it for consideration Funding decisions are communicated and follow-up reporting assigned.
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Investing in lasting community change
We believe all of our neighbors should have access to the opportunities, resources, and relationships they need to thrive, regardless of place, race, or identity. That’s why we invest in community partners that help us generate economic mobility and shared prosperity.
Reflecting our new vision and strategic plan, we have committed to a strategic deployment of resources aimed at creating systems-level change. While we continue to operate our Caring and Inclusive grant cycle, this new flexible and proactive fund is dedicated to grants that have the power and potential to address root causes and create systems-level change.
The Eviction Prevention Initiative (EPI) is a partnership between the Community Foundation of Greater Chattanooga, the City of Chattanooga, Habitat for Humanity of Greater Chattanooga Area, and Legal Aid of East Tennessee. The EPI was created to ensure that as many people as possible in our community who are facing eviction would have access to a knowledgeable attorney, case worker, and flexible to help them navigate the eviction process.
Get Vaccinated Chattanooga (GVC) is a coalition of community organizations that have assembled to provide equitable and consistent access to both COVID-19 vaccine education and vaccination clinics to the vulnerable populations within our community. As a result of this initiative, information and thousands of vaccines have been delivered through mass vaccination events and neighborhood block parties.
In 2018, our Board of Directors adopted Economic Mobility and Persistent Poverty as the primary focuses of its work in the community. The Foundation has adopted a holistic definition of economic mobility that goes beyond economic success to include personal autonomy and sense of belonging.
Against this backdrop, the Board voted to allocate $1M to a local impact investing strategy to support its overall goal of creating opportunities for economic mobility in the Chattanooga area. We identified entrepreneurship as a powerful mechanism for wealth creation and mobility. With these values in mind, and together with local partners, we have created the Accelerator Loan Fund and Chattanooga Impact Capital Fund for local entrepreneurs who are Black, Indigenous or People of Color (BIPOC).
Chattanooga is always evolving and so too are the needs of our city.
We're still working to transform generosity into lasting impact.
Chattanooga Impact Capital Fund
Building the success of the Accelerator Loan Fund, the Chattanooga Impact Capital Fund will assist local BIPOC entrepreneurs to scale with larger loans.
We believe our community can build wealth and increase productive capacity in Chattanooga’s communities of color by supporting the growth of local businesses with equitable and inclusive ownership, through intentional impact investments, capital coordination, and strategic technical assistance.
Accelerator Loan Fund
The Accelerator Loan Fund assists the growth and development of successful minority business enterprises in the Chattanooga/Hamilton County community.
In partnership with LAUNCH Chattanooga and Tennessee Valley Federal Credit Union, the Accelerator Loan Fund works to provide low-interest rate loans to entrepreneurs of color who would otherwise not have the opportunity to seek such capital. As entrepreneurs go through the loan application process they are exposed to new banking and business relationships. Once approved, they are given an advisor who will walk with them for the next year of their business to provide wisdom, thought leadership, and insight.
Once approved, the entrepreneur is given an advisor who will walk with them for the next year of their business to provide wisdom, thought leadership, and insight. At the end of the loan term, the goal is for each entrepreneur to be able to access new sources of capital from other investors and other financial institutions. The Accelerator Loan Fund Program exists to provide access to capital and to increase social capital and pathways to success.