Grants & Scholarships

To relieve the suffering caused by poverty in Northern Virginia.

PovertyRelief Doorways
According to our Opportunity Index for Northern Virginia, nearly 16% of our neighbors live at or below 200% of the Federal Poverty Level. Despite overall economic growth throughout our region, a rising income inequality and lack of economic mobility persists for many in our community. Today, the chance for a child to achieve the American Dream is less than 50% - a staggering statistic.

To help relieve the suffering caused by poverty, the Community Foundation for Northern Virginia makes grants with a focus in Poverty Relief annually through the Community Investment Funds grant cycle.

The Poverty Relief Fund is a component fund of The Permanent Fund for Northern Virginia, an unrestricted endowment at the Community Foundation that makes grants to help build a community that works for everyone.

In 2018, Second Story received a grant to provide housing and shelter assistance to homeless youth in our region. Thanks to the grant, Second Story was able to provide client Brayan not only with housing, but also with a case manager and access to opportunities like getting his drivers’ license, food and clothes, and the freedom to focus on what mattered most to him -- his education. With this freedom, Brayan was even able to create his own Tesla coil, fulfilling a dream he’d had ever since he was a child! Now, Brayan is now attending Shenandoah University on almost a full-ride scholarship. He’s studying entrepreneurship and hopes to get his master’s in mechanical engineering so he can start a technology company. He wants to change the world with clean energy. But he wasn’t able to do it alone. “Everything that I was able to do was because of the support of a lot of people in my community,” says Brayan.
— Testimonial provided by 2018 Poverty Relief Grantee, Second Story for Homeless Youth

Nonprofits: Learn More & Apply

The 2021 application cycle is now closed.  Applications were accepted in the following categories:
  • Housing/Shelter
  • Eviction/Foreclosure Assistance
  • Other non-food related Emergency Assistance


For 2021, the Community Foundation considered grant applications that met the following criteria.
  • Applicants must be 501(c)(3) organizations providing charitable or educational services. Local, state and federal government entities are not eligible to apply.
  • Grant requests for capacity building, program or general support purposes will be considered. Funding may be used to support, expand or enhance existing programs or to start new programs. Applications for capital improvements, endowments, or scholarship awards will not be considered.
  • Grants will be made to organizations providing services in Northern Virginia (Arlington, Fairfax, Loudoun and Prince William counties, plus the cities of Alexandria, Fairfax, Falls Church and Manassas/Manassas Park).
  • Grant requests of $10,000 will be accepted.
  • Applications that are late or incomplete will not be considered.
  • Only one application per organization will be considered.

Grant Application Portal

To apply or update a grant application, access the grants portal here:
Submit Applications or Review Past Grants Here

You will be instructed to set up an organizational profile before applying. If your organization has applied in the past, check with other staff members to get access to the organization profile already established. It contains grant history and past applications. Please do not set up a new profile unless you are sure your organization has not applied previously.

Grant Cycle Timeline

January 7, 2021 2021 CIF Informational Webinar
January 7, 2021 Applications Open
February 1, 2021 Grant Reports Due from 2020 Grantees
February 4, 2021 Applications Due
May 3, 2021 Applicants notified of funding status
February 1, 2022 Grant Reports Due from 2021 Grantees

Please contact Sari Raskin, Vice President of Grants and Community Leadership.
703 879 7641 This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Jennifer CochranQuestions?
Please contact Jennifer Cochran, Manager of Grants and Scholarships.
703 879 7639 This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.