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Investing in Our Community: Buncombe County's Grant Programs

Buncombe County is committed to building a healthy, safe, well-educated, and thriving community that is equitable and sustainable.

Buncombe County invests in our community through 8 grant programs supporting organizations working in support of the Buncombe 2025 Strategic Plan focus areas and goals.  

The application cycle for 2021-2022 grants opened in December 2020, with grant deadlines throughout the spring. Grant awards will be available for the fiscal year beginning July 1, 2021. 

Equity, diversity, and inclusion are critical to our grants processes, and Buncombe County encourages participation from organizations led by and providing service to people of color/BIPOC individuals.  

Read more to see if the following opportunities might be right for your organization. Learn more about these grant opportunities at  

Affordable Housing Services Program 

Affordable Housing funding is intended to ensure comprehensive opportunities for affordable and safe housing as a foundation for healthy and thriving families and neighborhoods. Goals include: increasing the stock of affordable housing; preserving the existing housing stock; reducing substandard housing; and supporting homeownership initiatives, such as down payment assistance and weatherization programs. Applications opened Dec. 14, with an application deadline of Feb. 12, 2021. 

Aging Services Funding 

The Aging Services grants are made in alignment with the Buncombe County Aging Plan, which reflects the vision of an age-friendly community where older adults are safe, well, and engaged. The goals of the plan are to: prevent abuse, neglect, and exploitation of older adults; prevent financial fraud and scams; improve health and wellbeing among older adults; improve and support financial wellbeing among older adults; improve and support caregiver wellbeing; increase older adults’ access to transportation; improve older adults’ access to services and supports; and increase age-friendly capability of Buncombe County. Funding includes State/Federal Home and Community Care Block Grant as well as local County dollars. Applications opened in January 2021 with an application deadline in late February 2021. 

Community Recreation Grants  

The purpose of the Buncombe County Recreation Services Grants Program is to provide funding to qualified organizations within Buncombe County interested in partnering with our Department to carry out our mission through the promotion of recreational fitness, health and wellness initiatives as well as community based activities and capital improvements that increase recreational opportunities for the communities served. Grant awards will build momentum for long-term change in the community in alignment with the Buncombe 2025 plan. Applications opened late February 2021 with an application deadline March, 26 2021. Read more in this article

Early Childhood Fund 

The overall goal of the fund is to ensure that every child in Buncombe County has an equal opportunity to thrive during their first 2,000 days including access to quality early childhood education. Funding is earmarked to support early care and education for children birth through kindergarten, including infants/toddlers, preschoolers, and pre-kindergarteners. Funding will be allocated for projects working toward increasing slots for enrollment, increasing quality, developing/diversifying the early childhood workforce, supporting families, and enhancing the effectiveness of the overall system of early care and education. Applications opened Dec. 14, with an application deadline of Feb. 12, 2021. 

Isaac Coleman Grants 

These grants are targeted investments for organizations working to improve equitable opportunity. Our goal with this investment is to rebuild the health, safety, and self-sufficiency in our communities. No new applications will be taken for the 2021-2022 grant year. In June 2020, the Board of Commissioners approved 3-year grants. Funding will be extended for current grantees until June 30, 2023, subject to budget availability and project performance. 

Juvenile Crime Prevention Program 

The North Carolina Department of Public Safety's Division of Juvenile Justice partners with Juvenile Crime Prevention Councils in each county to galvanize community leaders, locally and statewide, to reduce and prevent juvenile crime. The intent is to provide community-based alternatives to youth development centers and to provide community-based delinquency, substance abuse, and gang prevention strategies and programs. 

Applications are now open for small grants totaling more than $600,000 in state funding for local nonprofits and public agencies working to serve delinquent and at-risk youth in our community. The deadline to apply is Tuesday, March 16.

Strategic Partnership Grants 

Strategic Partnership Grants fund nonprofit organizations with programs that promote a healthy, safe, well-educated, and thriving community with a sustainable quality of life. Funded projects must align with Buncombe 2025 Strategic Plan focus areas: Educated & Capable Community; Environmental & Energy Stewardship; Resident Well-Being; and a Vibrant Economy. Applications opened Dec. 14, with an application deadline of Feb. 12, 2021. 

Tipping Point Grants 

These are small grants to help amplify community efforts. These grants will either fuel what is already happening or allow the development of local projects. The idea is that by onloading positive factors and offloading negative factors, the scales can tip toward greater community resiliency. Projects should be led by an individual or community-based group, connected to a specific neighborhood or geography, and grounded in cultural identity and sense of place. Applications opened Dec. 14, with an application deadline of Feb. 12, 2021. 

Visit for full details including application information, previously funded projects, performance reporting, and funding committee materials.