CBCF is headquartered in Corpus Christi, Texas. Photo: Trong Nguyen/shutterstock
CBCF is headquartered in Corpus Christi, Texas. Photo: Trong Nguyen/shutterstock

At least a couple dozen community foundations operate across the state of Texas, but one with a particularly broad geographic reach is the Coastal Bend Community Foundation (CBCF). This funder has been on the philanthropy scene along the Gulf Coast for nearly 40 years and is known for being open to pretty much any nonprofit cause within its service area.

For grantseekers this part of Texas, here are the top things to know about the Coastal Bend Community Foundation.

A Focus on Seven Counties

While some Texas community foundations are city-based, such as the Dallas Foundation and the Greater Houston Community Foundation, others like CBCF reach across multiple counties to serve a broader region. CBCF serves the counties of Aransas, Bee, Jim Wells, Kleberg, Nueces, Refugio and San Patricio. In these counties, it awarded grants to 82 nonprofits in its most recent grant cycle.

Very Specific Giving Priorities

CBCF considers many different types of nonprofits for support, but it has some very specific things in mind within each of its focus categories. For example, arts and culture grants support performing arts and music programs, as well as museum exhibits and classes. Education funding is for library services, adult literacy, GED programs and youth programs. Environmental grants encompass animal welfare, park improvements and conservation.

Grants for families and children go to both youth and elderly programs, while health grants support patient services and diabetes programs. In its human services focus area, CBCF funds drug programs, shelters, counseling and food pantries. More generally, grants for the public good go to disaster relief, community development and housing efforts. There are also separate funds that support animal welfare, the elderly, historical preservation, cultural activities, the intellectually disabled and children’s programs.

An Annual Open Application Process

There is just one opportunity each year to secure funding from CBCF, beginning with an open application period from May 1 to June 15. The funder usually awards around a total of $500,000 through this process. Grants are typically between $5,000 and $10,000 and go toward project support. However, CBCF became more open to providing general operating support during the COVID-19 pandemic. While the type of funding may shift from year to year, there are no exceptions to the application deadline, and the application process is entirely online.

An Annual Day of Giving

Many Texas community foundations participate in an annual day of giving and CBCF is no exception. The Coastal Bend Day of Giving is an online matching gift campaign held each November. This is a separate event from the foundation’s annual application process, and it’s aimed at helping nonprofits raise money without the need for resource-intensive fundraising. It is also a way to attract new donors and encourage nonprofits to use new marketing tools. The 2019 annual day of giving involved 26 funders, 50 nonprofits and $2,845,595 in new funds raised.

Learn more about CBCF in IP’s full profile of the Coastal Bend Community Foundation in our Southwest funding guide.