Community

Bristol County Savings Charitable Foundation

The Bristol County Savings Charitable Foundation (BCSCF) was established in 1996 as part of the Bank’s 150th Anniversary celebrations. The purpose of our Foundation is to fund needs that contribute to the economic and social well-being of the people and institutions located in the greater Attleboro/Taunton, greater New Bedford, greater Fall River, Massachusetts area and the Pawtucket, Rhode Island area.

Since our Foundation began, over $16 million in grants have been committed to 501(c)(3) organizations in our local communities. Last year, for the sixth consecutive year, our Foundation awarded in excess of $1 million in support of organizations that are dealing with some of our area’s most critical issues.

Our Foundation relies upon the guidance of 22 local community leaders who assist us in making funding decisions for each area. This local expertise helps us ensure that our funding efforts are focused and targeted towards creating positive impact for the communities we serve.

Eligibility Guidelines

If you are a 501(c)(3) organization located in or serving one of the following communities, we welcome you to apply:

  • Taunton/Attleboro Massachusetts Community: Attleboro, Berkley, Dighton, Franklin, North Attleborough, Norton, Plainville, Raynham, Rehoboth, Seekonk, Taunton, and Wrentham, Massachusetts
  • Southcoast Massachusetts Community: Dartmouth, East Freetown, Fall River, New Bedford, and Westport Massachusetts
  • Pawtucket, RI Community: Pawtucket, Rhode Island


Funding Preferences:

The BCSCF was established for the purpose of being a partner for local organizations by providing financial support and in turn creating a positive impact for the communities we serve. To achieve these goals we have established funding preferences that include:

  • Funding projects or purposes that focus on one or more of the following areas:
    • Education & Financial Literacy
    • Economic Development
    • Housing (particularly targeted to low-moderate income)
  • Funding a variety of purposes for each organization including seed funding and special projects as opposed to contributing to an organization’s annual operating budget
  • Funding projects or purposes that benefit many as opposed to a few


Funding Ranges/Restrictions:

In an effort to assist as many qualified organizations as possible within our market areas, our Foundation awards grants of varying sizes depending on the specific project being funded. However, please note the following:

  • One-time Grants:
    • The average range for grants is up to $7,500
    • Successful applicants are limited to one grant per year
  • Large Dollar Multi-Year Grants:
    • The BCSCF has a cap for the amount of multi-year grants issued annually, therefore large dollar grants are contingent on the number and dollar amount of multi-year grants on our existing commitment schedule
    • Successful applicants are precluded from receiving additional grants during the multi-year funding period


How To Apply:

If you are a 501(c)3 organization located in or serving one of the communities listed in the eligibility requirements and would like to apply to our Foundation, all funding requests must be submitted through our online grant application site. (We will no longer be able to accept mailed, faxed or emailed Letters of Interest). Please be sure to provide all requested information and upload all required documentation.

First Time Applicants:
If you are a first time user of our online system, please click here or call us at 508-828-5393 and we can assist you. This process is intended to help determine if your organization meets all the qualifications prior to investing time in the application process.

Returning Users:
If you are returning organization and would like to submit a new grant application please click here or call us at 508-828-5393 and we can assist you.


Deadlines:

The Bristol County Savings Charitable Foundation holds two meetings in each geographic region throughout the year to review application requests.

Grant application submission deadlines:

  • May 2017 Meetings – Deadline: April 1, 2017
  • November 2017 Meetings – Deadline: October 2, 2017


Past Recipients:

If you would like a listing of the previous grants funded by the Bristol County Savings Charitable Foundation, please call the Internal Revenue Service at 1-877-829-5500 and request a copy of our Foundation’s 990PF or visit their website and click on the Freedom of Information Act link, and follow the instructions on that site.


Frequently Asked Questions:

Can I email my application in?
If you are a 501(c)3 organization located in or serving one of the communities (refer to eligibility requirements above) and would like to apply to our Foundation, all funding requests must be submitted through our online grant application site. (Mailed, faxed or emailed requests can no longer be accepted). If you are a first time user of our online system, please send an email or call us at 508-828-5393 and we can assist you.

Can I use the same User ID if I represent multiple organizations?
Your email address is your User ID and can only be associated with one organization. If you are affiliated or applying on behalf of multiple organizations, you must have a unique email address for each organization.

What do I do if I can’t remember my password?
The most frequent problem organizations encounter is losing their password. If you cannot remember your password, please hit the password reset option when prompted at login.

Someone from my organization registered as a user but they are no longer with our organization. Can you help us with that?
We have the ability to reassign the account to a new authorized user. Please call us at 508-828-5393 or contact us and we can assist you.

How do I print my application?
Once your application is submitted you will see a printer button to the right. Click and print your completed application.

If I start an application and need to finish later, can I save my work?
If you begin an application you can save your work and continue at a later time.

How will I know you received my submitted application?
Once you submit your application, you will receive a thank you email sent to the email address you provided. If you do not receive this notification, please call us at 508-828-5393 or contact us and we can assist you.

How will I know if my grant was recommended for funding?
Our advisory boards meet twice a year in May and November. After the meetings you will be notified electronically with a recommended funding amount OR that the grant request was not recommended for funding.

If I don’t receive funding can I re-apply?
After the May and November meetings, you will receive a notification by email. If you did not receive a recommendation for funding but you are eligible to reapply, that will be included in the notification.

How do I access my saved application?
Click Here or refer to How To Apply above for a link to the online application site.

I am a first time user of the online application site. How do I obtain access?
If you are a first time user of our online system, please send an email or call us at 508-828-5393 and we can assist you. After your initial account setup, please refer to this website for further guidance.

What is 501(c)(3) status?
Section 501(c)(3) is the portion of the US Internal Revenue Code (IRS) that allows for federal tax exemption of nonprofit organizations, specifically those that are considered public charities, private foundations or private operating foundations. Organizations applying to the BCSCF must be certified by the IRS as a 501(c)(3) to qualify for funding.

What is a fiscal agent?
A Fiscal Agent is a 501(c)3 nonprofit, tax-exempt organization with a like mission who takes fiscal responsibility for grant applications on behalf of a community organization which does not own tax-exempt status. All payments will be made to the Fiscal Agent and all reporting requests will be to same.

What is CRA?
As defined by the Federal Reserve, the Community Reinvestment Act is intended to encourage depository institutions to help meet the credit needs of the communities in which they operate, including low- and moderate-income neighborhoods, consistent with safe and sound operations. It was enacted by the Congress in 1977 (12 U.S.C. 2901) and is implemented by Regulation BB (12 CFR 228). The regulation was substantially revised in May 1995 and updated again in August 2005. The CRA requires that each depository institution’s record in helping meet the credit needs of its entire community be evaluated by the appropriate Federal financial supervisory agency periodically.

How is low-moderate income population defined?
For purpose of this application, low-moderate income (LMI) is used to describe a population who meet one of the following criteria:

  • Annual earnings are less than 80% of the HUD Area Median Income
  • At or below 200% of the national poverty level
  • The population served is homeless
  • The population served is indigent
  • The population served qualifies for free/reduced school lunch
  • The population is located in an LMI census tract
  • or the project/program is part of a targeted revitalization/stabilization plan

For CRA purposes we ask you to select the community development area which best describes how your program supports the LMI population:

If your organization does not provide support based on any of the below choices, select N/A on the application:

  • Affordable Housing for LMI people
  • Community Services targeted to LMI people
  • Revitalization or stabilization of LMI geographies, distressed/underserved non-metropolitan areas, and disaster areas

What demographic data are you requesting?
We are requesting demographic data on the beneficiaries of your programs or services showing the number of recipients, where they reside, and how you substantiate that they are LMI, such as ‘qualifies for free-reduced school lunch’ or ‘lives in low-income housing’.

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