Local Nonprofits Receive Funding from The Community Foundation

Harrisonburg, VA – It feels like Christmas over at The Community Foundation of Harrisonburg  and Rockingham County (TCFHR)! No, it is not quite time for the holiday, but TCFHR is in the giving spirit since they are soon issuing Fall 2022 grants to nonprofit organizations. This year’s grants total $152,235 to 13 local nonprofits, more than TCFHR has given out in years past. The largest distribution ($55,000) coming from the Earlynn J. Miller Fund for the Arts. Dr. Earlynn J. Miller was honored posthumously at AFP Shenandoah’s National Philanthropy Day for her contributions at JMU as well as her generously giving approximately $5 million to establish three endowments at The Community Foundation that will support the arts forever.

The monies will go to organizations addressing needs in:
Animal welfare (Anicira, Cat’s Cradle, and Wildlife Center of VA) made by Hildred Neff Memorial Fund
Arts & Culture (Arts Council of the Valley) made by Mary Spitzer Etter Endowed Fund, (OASIS Fine Art & Craft) made by Valley Arts & Culture Fund, and (Arts Council of the Valley and Harrisonburg Dance Cooperative) made by Earlynn J. Miller Fund for the Arts
Children and Youth of Divorced Parents (Family Life Resource Center) made by Sean Warner Memorial Fund
Healthcare (Adagio House, Blue Ridge Free Clinic, and Strength in Peers) made by Alvin V. Baird, Jr. Program Housing (Central Valley Habitat for Humanity) made by Janet Sohn Endowed Fund
Greatest benefit to Harrisonburg and Rockingham County (Blue Ridge CASA and First Step) made by The Community Endowment Fund

Grant distributions come from funds held at TCFHR and are determined by Grants committees. Nonprofit organizations awarded all participated in a competitive application process. Per TCFHR policy, grants are made without regard to factors of gender, race, religion, national origin, or sexual orientation. For more information, contact Ann Siciliano at [email protected].


Read more about Community Foundation grant awards.

Grants for Animals and Emotional Support Are Announced!

The Community Foundation of Harrisonburg & Rockingham County announce 2019 grant awards for two of its funds, the Hildred Neff Memorial Fund and the Sean Warner Memorial Endowment Fund. The Hildred Neff Memorial Fund was established in 2012 with a gift from the estate of Hildred Neff, a Rockingham County native. The fund benefits agencies that provide for the needs of both domestic and wild animals. This year the following organizations will receive grant funding for projects submitted through an application process:

The Sean Warner Memorial Endowment Fund was established by Mark and Susan Warner to honor the memory of their son by helping other children. This fund was created to contribute to general charitable purposes within the area of emotional support services for children of divorced parents. This grant is awarded every other year and the following organization is the 2019 grant recipient:  Family Life Resource Center – $449 awarded

To learn more about these and other opportunities for grant funding visit the Grants Available page.

2016 Community Endowment Grant Recipient Announced

The Northeast Neighborhood Association (NENA) was selected as the 2016 grant recipient of the Community Endowment Fund, a permanent endowed fund at The Community Foundation of Harrisonburg & Rockingham County (TCFHR). Over $5,000 will be directed for the NENA Community Garden project.  According to the association’s grant application, the organization seeks start-up costs to create a “shared space where members of the community can sign up to grow vegetables, fruits and flowers.”

Karen Thomas, NENA’s President, explains the start-up costs for the Community Garden project include, “the purchase of tools, seeds, starter plants, and other garden necessities as well as stipends for local gardening experts to give workshops.” This project will specifically serve 25 households and the larger Northeast neighborhood community in general.

As stated on their website, the Northeast Neighborhood Association’s mission is to ensure that our neighborhood is safe, attractive and a strong community. Working hard to reduce crime and improve the appearance of the neighborhood. Partnering with city government, the community and non-governmental agencies to revitalize the Northeast Neighborhood and to address the needs of its residents.

48 community nonprofit organizations applied for the Community Endowment Fund grant this year, all with worthwhile projects designed to benefit our community. The grant is awarded on an annual basis to a local nonprofit organization through the Community Needs grant application process. Grant applications are available twice a year (spring and fall) and a nonprofit organization may apply once per calendar year.

The Community Endowment Fund is a pool of unrestricted endowed funds established for the greatest flexibility and benefit for the local community. This permanent fund helps finance projects of greatest benefit to Harrisonburg and Rockingham County as determined by community leaders. The Community Endowment accepts gifts of any size and is the perfect vehicle for individuals or businesses who simply want to give back to this community without designating a specific need.

The Community Endowment Fund was established in 2008 and its creation was guided by the TCFHR’s underlying vision to structure a permanent fund that would harness the power of many individuals giving together for the benefit of our community. Gifts to this fund receive a 25% match by a local donor. All gifts to the Community Endowment Fund will continue to be matched 25 cents per dollar until the fund balance reaches $100,000.

To learn more about the Community Endowment Fund, or to contribute to this permanent fund, contact the staff at The Community Foundation at 540-432-3863, or visit

The Community Foundation announces the Valley Arts & Culture Fund Grant

The Virginia Quilt Museum was selected as the 2016 grant recipient of the Valley Arts & Culture Fund, a permanent endowed fund at The Community Foundation of Harrisonburg & Rockingham County. Funds will be directed for the museum’s exhibit construction project. The museum plans to construct two permanent exhibits – an Orientation/Welcome Exhibit and a Warren-Sipe House History Exhibit.

Executive Director, Kimberly McCray, explains the need for an Orientation/Welcome Exhibit as essential, “because about half of our Museum’s visitors are not quilters and about 95% of our visitors go through the Museum and its exhibits by way of a self-guided tour. Without a tour guide to provide an introduction of the basics of quilt history, techniques, and culture, patrons cannot possibly understand or appreciate our exhibits fully without the context of an introductory exhibit.”

McCray describes the importance of a Warren-Sipe House History exhibit, “as one of the few remaining antebellum structures in downtown Harrisonburg, our building’s rich history and architecture deserves telling…… we hope to encourage an interest in the building that will lead to monetary contributions for maintaining and preserving the structure, which is a constant financial challenge for the Museum.”

Six community nonprofit organizations applied for the Valley Arts & Culture grant this year, each with projects worthy of consideration. The grant is awarded on an annual basis to a local nonprofit organization through the Community Needs grant application process.

The Valley Arts and Culture Fund provides program, project and seed funds to small and medium sized organizations promoting performing and visual arts and interpreting the culture and traditions of and in the Shenandoah Valley.

The Valley Arts and Culture Fund was established in 2000 by Larry and Pat Hoover.  Anyone may contribute to this permanent fund to provide on-going support for arts and culture in our community.  To learn more contact Ann Siciliano at The Community Foundation of Harrisonburg & Rockingham County at 540-432-3863, or visit

Spring Community Needs applications due soon

The application deadline for the Spring cycle of the Community Needs process for The Community Foundation of Harrisonburg & Rockingham County is quickly approaching. An nonprofit organization may apply once during a calendar year. Spring applications are due on Tuesday, March 1 at 4:00PM. Generally funding ranges from $250 – $10,000. Funding decisions are made by individual donors, private foundations and committees.


Organizations must be tax-exempt public charities under IRS Section 501c(3) or other nonprofit status. Organizations must be physically located in Harrisonburg or Rockingham County, and the project or program to be funded must serve the local area. Organizations not physically located in the Harrisonburg or Rockingham County area, but serving a substantial part of our community will need permission from TCFHR to apply. Religious organizations are welcome to apply if the project will significantly aid our local community.


A list of all Community Needs project requests will be featured on our website for one year after application submission. Please call Ann Siciliano, 540-432-3863, at The Community Foundation to determine eligibility before applying. Grants are made without regard to factors of gender, race, religion, national origin, or sexual orientation.


Please submit your completed application for the 2016 Spring Community Needs cycle by March 1.


2015 IMPACT Harrisonburg grant to ‘On the Road Collaborative’

2015 IMPACT picnic food

IMPACT Harrisonburg Executive Committee members Mike Frazier and Billy Robinson serve BBQ to On the Road Collaborative’s Executive Director, Brent Holsinger.

IMPACT Harrisonburg, the first giving circle of The Community Foundation of Harrisonburg & Rockingham County, recently presented their first grant check to On the Road Collaborative at a picnic held at Purcell Park. On the Road Collaborative is a 501(c)3 for-purpose organization whose mission is “to empower young people on the margins with the opportunity, skills and confidence they need to excel in school and fulfill their promise.” The organization currently works with middle school children at Skyline Middle School in Harrisonburg. The celebratory family-style picnic held on September 13 was hosted by IMPACT Harrisonburg members and attended by Brent Holsinger, On the Road Collaborative’s Executive Director, as well as members of the organization’s board of directors and staff members of The Community Foundation.

2015 IMPACT picnic Melissa2

Melissa Mayhew, IMPACT Harrisonburg member and staff member of The Community Foundation of Harrisonburg & Rockingham County, talks with a board member of On the Road Collaborative.

IMPACT Harrisonburg is a giving circle for young leaders in the Harrisonburg and Rockingham County community. IMPACT was established in 2014 for individuals in their twenties, thirties and forties to engage in meaningful philanthropy and learn about local nonprofits, while affordably leveraging their charitable dollars. The organization offers an opportunity to meet new people socially and professionally, as well as a chance to make a bigger impact collectively than individuals can alone.

2015 IMPACT picnic Luke2

Luke Hartman, board member of On the Road Collaborative

Events are held by IMPACT Harrisonburg throughout the year and offer social and educational opportunities for members, as well as for other individuals in the community. Collective dues are granted out annually to an organization chosen by a membership vote. Each member has one vote in the grantmaking process. IMPACT Harrisonburg utilizes the Community Needs list of funding requests when considering its annual grant recipient. The 2015 grant of almost $15,000 to On the Road Collaborative marks the first grant in IMPACT’s history.

The enrollment period for IMPACT Harrisonburg 2016 membership is now open. Contact Melissa at The Community Foundation with questions regarding membership and how you can become involved.