Capacity Building Grants

Capacity Building grants help an organization increase its sustainability and effectiveness by strengthening its governance and management systems. The Foundation does this by partnering with our Capacity Building grantees and other experts in organizational management.

  1. The first step is a phone consultation before you complete the application. You can schedule your consultation by contacting Cindy Hales, Vice President of Community Investment, at 517-664-9851 or
  2. The second step is an application. The application seeks to identify the specific problem(s) you need to solve in your organization. We are looking for a clear understanding of the capacity issue(s) that create challenges within the governance or management systems of your organization.
  3. Step three involves meeting with Community Foundation staff to co-design a detailed plan of action to address your capacity issue.


  • Request must focus on strengthening governance or management systems.
  • It is strongly recommended that applicants have at least one paid staff person and an annual operating budget of at least $100,000.
  • Applicants must agree to partner with Community Foundation staff to co-design a plan of action.

Examples of Capacity Building issues include:

  • Board Development
  • Fundraising Planning
  • Governance Models, Executive Leadership Development
  • Long-range Planning, Succession Planning
  • Staff Training and Development
  • Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Training


  • The grant application period is generally December - February, exact dates for 2023 TBA.
  • Applications will be reviewed by committee in late February with notification to awardees by early March.

SAMPLE Capacity Building Grant Application (for review only, do not submit)


Forms for 2020 Capacity Grantees only: