Community Foundation Now Accepting Grant Applications

The Outer Banks Community Foundation is now accepting applications from nonprofits for its 2021 Community Enrichment Grants Program. Applications must be submitted online via the Community Foundation’s web portal. The first deadline of the year is Friday, January 29 at midnight.

The Community Enrichment Grants Program is the Community Foundation’s largest and broadest funding opportunity. The grants are offered on a competitive basis for any kind of charitable project that benefits the Outer Banks, or any part thereof. Areas of interest include: arts & culture; animal welfare; children & youth; education; the environment; disaster relief & mitigation; health; historic interpretation & preservation; and other human services.

Most Community Enrichment Grants will support the direct costs of a charitable project or program. In 2020, for example, the Community Foundation sponsored prescription and over-the-counter medications for Dare residents through NC MedAssist, an ATV for sea turtle nest monitoring for the Network for Endangered Sea Turtles, and a hydroponic growing system for the Peace Garden Project.

Community Enrichment Grants are also awarded for capacity-building projects, with a goal of enhancing a nonprofit’s long-term effectiveness, financial stability, and/or program quality. For example, a grant was awarded last year for a new website for Hatteras Island Cancer Foundation.

Additionally, the Community Foundation awards program scholarship grants, which are grants to enable a nonprofit to offer “scholarships” to individuals and families with financial need or other hardship. The scholarships offset the registration fees that the nonprofit would normally charge for any kind of enrichment program, such as an educational offering or after-school program. For example, a 2020 Community Enrichment grant provided scholarships for children with disabilities for MANE and TAILL Therapeutic Horsemanship Academy.

Some limited Community Enrichment Grants are also available to nonprofits for program staff wages.

Community Enrichment Grants will be accepted on a rolling basis throughout 2021, and will be reviewed and awarded quarterly. Any applications received by Friday, January 29 will have a decision by March 12. Before starting an application for any grant, prospective applicants should first review the criteria online at, and then contact Lorelei Costa at 252-261-8839 to discuss their projects.