Mission Critical Grants Criteria

The Community Foundation of Western Massachusetts unfortunately does not have the resources to offset significant losses experienced by nonprofits. However since 2006 we have provided approximately $235,800 in support to organizations experiencing operating issues on a temporary basis.

1. Mission Critical Grants enable the Community Foundation of Western Massachusetts to assist nonprofits with time-limited grants in the following circumstances:Unforeseen emergencies directly impacting nonprofits such as fires, gas explosions, floods or other unpredictable occurrences that require capital expenditures.

2. Temporary increased service need experienced by nonprofits that are the direct result of an unforeseen emergency such as a fire, tornado, flood, etc.

3. Urgent needs that could not be anticipated that directly impact a nonprofit or a program of a nonprofit.   This would include the unexpected loss of committed funding.  Mission Critical would provide support to consolidate, downsize or terminate programs in a responsible manner; or to stabilize program for the short-term (up to 3 months).

The CFWM would not normally be the only source of help during the temporary period. An applicant organization should not seek this type of support from the CFWM before it has both adequately assessed the current funding shortfall and explored other potential options to address it.

General Guidelines

  • As a general rule CFWM does not provide general operating support, however, through this program, CFWM has expanded its guidelines to incorporate a program for critical support.
  • Organizations seeking Mission Critical funding should call Mission Grants staff at (413) 732-2858 to discuss. If appropriate, the organization will be asked to submit a letter of intent.
  • Awards can be from $5,000-$20,000 and support a 3-month time period.
  • Applications may be submitted on a rolling basis.