Communities of Coastal Georgia Foundation

OVERVIEW: This community funder provides competitive grants of up to $5,000 per grantee in a wide variety of locally focused topics. There are also endowed, donor-advised, corporate, and giving circle funds available through CCGF.

FUNDING AREAS: Community strengthening, early childhood literacy, teen pregnancy, juvenile crime and gang activity, high school graduation, youth development, innovative education strategies, risk reduction, arts and culture

IP TAKE: Although CCGF grants aren’t huge (typically $5,000 or less), there aren’t too many funders solely focused on this part of Georgia. First-time grant recipients fare well here.

PROFILE: The Communities of Coastal Georgia Foundation (CCGF) is based in St. Simons Island, Georgia, and was founded in 2005. Bill Jones III was the founding chair, and was joined by local philanthropists who wanted to improve people’s lives in Coastal Georgia. There are over 60 funds held at this community foundation today.

Three goals were set as part of CCGF’s 2015-2018 strategic plan: sustainability, scope and scale, and significance. This means creating lasting values for the community and donors, digging deeper with foundation giving, and making the foundation’s work as relevant and impactful as possible. This is a foundation that doesn’t just want to respond to local needs, but rather anticipate them and plan for the long-term.

CCGF has a competitive grant process that begins in January with awards announced in June. These grants are supported through CCGF’s Community Impact Fund, which gets support through the foundation and all fund-holders. Nonprofits serving citizens of Glynn, McIntosh, and/or Camden Counties are encouraged to apply. Governmental agencies, religious, and civic organizations can also apply if the grant money will be used for charitable purposes.

The foundation also has several endowed funds that are set up by donors in specific interest areas. These include the Coastal Community Endowment, Early Childhood Literacy Endowment, The Mildred Huie/Mildred Huie Wilcox Endowment for the Arts and Culture, Coastal Counseling Center Endowed Fund, Raymond & Elizabeth Baumel and Abernathy Fund for Animal Welfare, Derlie Bland Rectanus & Vice Admiral Earl Rectanus Children’s Reading Room & Garden Fund, and The Halsey Family Scholarship Fund. Meanwhile, donor-advised funds have been set up by corporate groups like Rich’s Consumer Brands Charitable Fund and The Hospice of the Golden Isles, Inc. Fun. Golden Isles Fund for Trees is a community giving circle.

You can download the grant application from the funder’s website, and grants are awarded for a 12-month period. A list of recent grants can be viewed here along with grant amounts and descriptions of what the money will be used for.

In a past competitive grant cycle, this funder awarded $62,000 in grants to 16 community organizations in Glynn, Camden, and McIntosh Counties. In a recent year, the foundation had over $15 million in total assets. Current financial data can be viewed here.

General questions can be directed to the staff at 912-268-2561 or info@coastalgeorgiafoundation.org. There are just two members of the staff, a president/CEO and a grants/operations manager. Keep up with new grants and foundation work in the news section of the funder’s website.

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