High Point Community Foundation

OVERVIEW: This funder supports the High Point, North Carolina, area in the fields of education, food security, and community cohesion. It makes grants once per year.

FUNDING AREAS: Education, food security, community cohesion

IP TAKE:  In addition to the annual competitive grantmaking rounds, grant seekers should look into opportunities with HPCF’s women’s giving circle and the Principal’s Fund.

PROFILE: The High Point Community Foundation (HPCF) is located in High Point, North Carolina, and serves the region. It seeks to be “a catalyst for positive change that promotes philanthropy, administers an expanding grants program and serves as a trustworthy partner in responding to community needs.” The foundation was established in 1990 and opened its first office with hired staff in 1998. An attorney and community leader named Jim Morgan came up with the idea for this foundation and worked with Jim Millis Sr. to bring the idea to fruition.

Today, HPCF has three focus areas: education, food security and community cohesion. It gives education grants primarily to groups that partner with or support Say Yes Guilford, a college and career readiness program. It gives food security grants for short-term hunger relief and long-term solutions. Community cohesion grants go to projects that build unity, civic pride and that bring the High Point community together.

Since 1998, HPCF has granted over $43.5 million to nonprofits, schools and municipalities in the region and beyond. HPCF's grants committee administers distributions from two special funds, along with annual grants. The Cory McInnis “Compassion in Education” Endowment Fund supports efforts to enhance the quality of education and life for High Point students. Meanwhile, the Violet Hutchens “Children’s Education” Field of Interest Fund supports youth education.

The foundation does not give grants for general operating support, multiyear support, repeat-year support or to individuals. It does not provide funds in the form of loans, or for political or sectarian purposes. This is a locally oriented funder that only funds statewide or national programs that have a direct benefit for High Point residents.

The foundation awards grants once per year, and the application process is completely online. In the past, the annual grant application has been made available between early June and mid-August. Select applicants are invited to present before the grants committee in October, and grant checks are awarded in November. Video tutorials and guidelines can be found on the website and application portal. Grants maximums are $50,000 for both program and capital funding.

Grantees include the Boys and Girls Clubs of Greater High Point, Guilford Child Development, and Heal our Heroes. Click here for a list of grant recipients by year.

HPCF also awards the High Point Central Class of 1960 Scholarship and the J. Howard Coble Scholarship. To honor community members who are dedicated to local philanthropy, the funder awards a Philanthropist of the Year Award and a Spirit of the Foundation Award. Women in Motion is a women’s giving circle initiative of HPCF, and other funds held here are the Principal’s Fund (education) and the Heart of High Point Fund (human services).

In a past year, the foundation held over $68 million in total assets. Financial data is here.

Paul Lessard is HPCF president and can be reached at paul@hpcommunityfoundation.org or 336-882-3298. Karol Murks, the director of accounting and grants, is the best contact for grant seeker questions and can be reached at karol@hpcommunityfoundation.org. Sherri Scott is director of donor services and administration. The funder’s address is 501 North Main Street, Suite 2A, P.O. Box 5166, High Point, North Carolina 27260.


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