USDA Announces $250K Grant Project for Strengthening Communities

With one in every twelve jobs in WV are employed in the nonprofit sector and philanthropy collectively investing more than $60 million a year in our communities, the impact of both the nonprofit and philanthropic sectors are important to improving the quality of life in West Virginia’s communities.

During these challenging economic times, strengthening both nonprofit and philanthropy’s impact is greatly needed now more than ever in West Virginia. The USDA recently recognized this work by announcing a $250,000 Rural Community Development Initiative grant during the joint Philanthropy WV Annual Conference and WV Nonprofit Association’s Leadership Summit in Huntington. “The three-year grant will advance nonprofit technical assistance, community development philanthropy building, and program development for community foundations and nonprofits in the West Virginia counties of Nicholas, Summers, Barbour, Doddridge and Ritchie counties,” shared USDA State Director Bobby Lewis.


As Community Foundations play a key role to both invest in worthy community projects and organizations and grow their assets to have more grantmaking resources, they will be the key partners with Philanthropy WV and the WV Nonprofit Association over the next three years. “The program is titled Advancing Nonprofit and Philanthropy Capacity for Strong West Virginia Communities,” noted Philanthropy WV’s President & CEO Paul D. Daugherty.   He added, “Creating a better future for these communities requires the fuel of new resources and building upon those resources by engaging the state’s largest and significant generational transfer of wealth. These resources coming from local communities will help nonprofits enhance their programs and outreach to improve communities and the economy in partnership with businesses and local government.”

Philanthropy WV and the WV Nonprofit Association will enhance and expand their roles by serving as a collaborative intermediary by providing technical assistance and philanthropic and nonprofit capacity building. “The expertise and resources of the WV Nonprofit Association will be provided to these communities to respond to nonprofit training needs, organizational development, and investments to increase their community impact,” said WVNPA Executive Director Laura Lee Haddad. She added, “The ultimate beneficiaries of this work will be the citizens of these counties who will experience stronger community development and economic betterment.”

The program begins right away as the WVNPA and Philanthropy WV will be hiring a program coordinator who will lead the work in these five counties in partnership with a steering committee representing the community foundations serving the five counties including: Hinton Area Foundation, Nicholas County Community Foundation, Parkersburg Area Community Foundation affiliates of Ritchie County Community Foundation and Doddridge County Community Foundation, and Tucker Community Foundation serving Barbour County.


For more information about Philanthropy WV visit: and the WVNPA visit: