At a Glance

Central Carolina Community Foundation brought On The Table to Richland and Lexington Counties in 2018. This is an annual, conversation-based, community-focused opportunity to gather together for meaningful conversations and discuss what’s great about our community and how we can make it even better. On the Table participants were excited and passionate about the fresh, innovative ideas to work together and improve our communities. To help these ideas become a reality, the Community Foundation launched Beyond the Table grants.

Examples of Eligible Activities

Beyond the Table mini-grants are intended for Midlands residents wanting to turn ideas into actionable change in our community. Grant proposals must address an identified community need. Mini–grants are awarded to nonprofit organizations or individuals with a fiscal sponsorship who are interested in shaping the future of our community.

Areas of community need to consider for Beyond the Table projects include, but are not limited to:

  • Quality public schools
  • Good jobs and economic development
  • Poverty and economic insecurity
  • Affordable housing
  • Healthcare access
  • Crime, violence and public safety
  • Race relations, racism, and discrimination
  • Transportation and infrastructure
  • Walkable and bikeable urban areas
  • Streamlining resources for entrepreneurs and small businesses

In addition to addressing a community need, Beyond the Table grants must also include at least one element of community attachment: 

  • Increasing volunteering
  • Encouraging civic engagement  
  • Fostering social change
  • Supporting locally-owned businesses

Evaluation Criteria

Proposed projects will be scored based on their ability to positively impact the community. Proposed projects should:

  • Be easily actionable and completed within in 6 months in response to an identifiable community need
  • Provide equitable, safe and welcoming solutions to improve quality of life for Richland, Lexington or Sumter County residents
  • Be collaborative in nature and engage community partners or residents in specific ways
  • Include at least one element of community attachment
  • Be innovative in its approach (or new to the issue, population, community, etc.)
  • Target a specific location or audience
  • Have outcomes that can be easily measured (quantifiable)
  • Generate outcomes beyond the life of the grant
  • Be able to be completed within six months (such as virtually and/or with social distance safety measures in place to protect staff and clients)

Examples of Non-Eligible Activities

  • Routine operating expenses of an organization
  • Grants to individuals without a fiscal sponsor
  • Fundraising projects—including events
  • Debt reduction
  • Endowment or capital campaigns
  • Medical research
  • Individual conference registrations
  • Costs associated with the creation of starting a new nonprofit organization
  • Completed projects or proposals that have already begun implementation
  • Certifications and tuition fees

Eligibility Requirements

  • Nonprofit organizations (in good standing under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code), government entities, educational institutions, faith-based organizations, and individuals with a fiscal sponsor are eligible to apply.
  • Organizations must have a physical location in Lexington, Richland or Sumter Counties.

Grant Amount

The Community Foundation will award up to $20,000 in grants.

Organizations can request up to $2,000.

Note: The Community Foundation acknowledges general costs are associated with operating a nonprofit. As such, grantees may allocate up to 15% of their grant award for general and administrative costs (i.e. overhead or indirect costs).


  • March 2021 – Application Opens

Apply for a Grant

Please note: Mailed, Emailed, Faxed, or Hand-Delivered Applications will not be accepted.

Review Process

Applications will be reviewed by the Beyond the Table Grant Committee of Central Carolina Community Foundation. This committee is composed of community leaders, including On the Table Planning Committee members and Community Foundation trustees. Final funding decisions are approved by the CCCF Board of Trustees. Declinations will be emailed.