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Golden LEAF Foundation (North Carolina)
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Golden Leaf Foundation
The purpose of Golden LEAF is to fund projects that promise to bring significant economic improvement to the tobacco-dependent, economically distressed, and/or rural communities of North Carolina.
The Golden LEAF Foundation is committed to using the funds entrusted to it for projects that show the most potential for strengthening North Carolinas long-term economy, especially in tobacco-dependent, economically distressed, and/or rural communities.
Golden LEAF currently has two programs open to eligible entities seeking grants. These programs complement other ongoing initiatives of the Foundation: (1) The Open Grants Program and (2) The Economic Catalyst Cycle.
The Open Grants Program
The Open Grants Program places high priority on the areas of agriculture, job creation and retention and workforce preparedness. Other projects that focus on other opportunities to support and develop economic strength in tobacco-dependent, economically distressed and/or rural communities are also welcomed. In light of the economic downturn, Golden LEAF will be looking for opportunities to complement and leverage federal and state stimulus programs to increase the impact of its grantmaking on targeted communities.
The Open Grants Program replaces the former Golden LEAF Annual Grants Cycle. This program will make it easier for applicants to submit proposals to Golden LEAF and make funding opportunities available throughout the year.
The Economic Catalyst Cycle
is a program that focuses on job creation and/or retention projects associated with business locations or expansions in North Carolina that are at risk without participation from Golden LEAF. Projects submitted by eligible entities must meet specific criteria to be considered for funding. Project requests in this category must be for job creation. The projects must be AT RISK without Golden LEAF participation. Projects are determined to be "At Risk" based on a number of factors including: evidence of urgency for assistance necessary to facilitate job creation, demonstrable need, the county's ability to pay, competitive sites in other states being considered, and others. Grants are available for projects that include the creation of full-time equivalent positions (FTE) in NC. Project support will be determined by considering a number of factors including: the county's tier designation status as published by the NC Department of Commerce, the number of jobs created, and the quality of jobs.
History of Funding
Through May 2010, Golden LEAF has received $867,318,889.43 in payments as a result of the settlement of litigation brought by North Carolina and 45 other states against manufacturers of tobacco products. Since the foundation began making grants in 2000, Golden LEAF has awarded 1,089 grants totaling more than $502 million to nonprofit organizations and government entities throughout North Carolina. Past award information is available by searching the foundation's database of grant awards at
Low Priority Proposals
Golden LEAF has also identified types of requests which typically are of low priority in its Open Grants Program. These include:
Construction Projects not tied to specific job creation and retention opportunities
Infrastructure Projects not tied to specific job creation and retention opportunities
Revolving Loan Funds
Purchase of Land
After-School or Day Care Programs
General Employability Training Programs
General Use Community Centers/Facilities
301 N. Winstead Avenue
Eligible applicants are governmental entities and 501 (c)(3) non-profits and governmental entities across North Carolina. Please refer to the official program guidance for additional information and restrictions. Golden LEAF accepts applications from all communities in North Carolina; however, funded projects must benefit tobacco-dependent, economically distressed, and/or rural communities. Applicants can strengthen their proposals by identifying the direct positive effect(s) the project will have on those target communities
Economic Catalyst proposals may be submitted throughout the year and will be presented to the Golden LEAF Foundation Board at the next regularly scheduled meeting that is not less than six weeks after submission of the completed proposal. Letters of Intent for 2018 for the Open Grants Program are to be submitted by February 22 and April 26, 2018. A similar window is anticipated in 2019.
Award amounts vary. There is no minimum grant amount. In the Open Grants Program, grants are not expected to exceed $200,000. There are no maximum grant amounts in the Economic Catalyst program.
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