Our 2021 giving cycle is now open! Letters of inquiry are due to ceo(at) by Sept. 20.

Charitable Giving

The Morgan E. Cline Foundation funds charitable projects in and around Appanoose County in our four areas of focus. Funding is awarded annually, with a call for letters of inquiry going out typically in August each year. The foundation awards two types of competitive grants--Community Cornerstone and Growing Good grants.

Morgan Cline Community Cornerstone Grant

For established mid-size or large organizations undertaking important charitable work, this one-time grant combines funding with technical services from our staff that can range from capacity building to advocacy and strategic planning. As the name implies, our Community Cornerstone Grants are intended to support organizations, programs, or initiatives that are true cornerstones of Appanoose County.

The Community Cornerstone Grant may be used for general operating support, specific projects, or capital improvements. The most important criteria is that the funded work will have a significant impact on Appanoose County in one of our four strategic giving areas.

We currently fund up to one grant per year for each issue area, for a maximum of 4 grants per year. Given the scale of projects we seek to support, the minimum grant amount is $20,000.

We know some critical initiatives in our community address multiple issue areas. These cross-cutting initiatives may be considered for awards in all the areas they address.

To be considered for an award greater than $20K, the initiative must address more than one of the core areas.

We believe that very few organizations/projects can effectively address three areas simultaneously. Therefore, the maximum grant amount is $60,000.

Applicants that can demonstrate financial matches of 1:1 or greater are strongly preferred.

Growing Good Grant

Targeted at nonprofits that are smaller, newer, growing, or are simply looking for support that goes beyond funding. This three-year general operating support grant combines staggered funding ($5,000 the first year, $3,000 the second year, $2,000 the third year) with in-kind capacity building services from our staff.

In addition to funding, our staff will work with your organization to customize a plan of support that will include anything from strategic planning to grant writing, program design, or communications. The intent of this grant is to help organizations with potentially large impact in Appanoose County professionalize and develop a solid foundation for growth once the foundation’s support has ended.

To provide the depth of technical support needed, we currently start a maximum of one Growing Good Grant each year. In this way, we have no more than three Growing Good Grants in operation at any one time.

Growing Good Grant recipients must work in one of our four strategic giving areas.

Who we fund

We support organizations with:

  • 501(c)(3) status that are also 509(a)(1) or 509(a)(2) public charities.

  • Churches, hospitals, schools, or governmental agencies like fire departments or public libraries undertaking charitable activities or tax exempt organizations that are 509(a)(3) organizations. As special rules apply to some of these types of organizations, it is important that they contact the foundation to learn more about their eligibility.

  • Headquarters or substantial operations in or around Appanoose County, Iowa.

  • Strong board, volunteer, and/or staff leadership.

  • The capacity to measure and communicate their work.

  • Effective financial management and existing sources of funding.

  • The ability and willingness to collaborate with businesses, government entities, and other nonprofits to achieve their goals.

We do not fund:

  • Programs outside of the Appanoose County, Iowa area.

  • Individuals, either through scholarships or emergency financial assistance.

  • Businesses or political organizations.

  • Private foundations.

  • Organizations or programs focused on a single disease or medical condition.

  • Sports teams, including those at the youth, high school, or collegiate level.

  • Clubs or activities that are part of a public or private school, such as a high school yearbook, elementary school booster club, or college band.

  • Programs that promote religious doctrine.

  • Lobbying.

  • Projects of a nonprofit association or club that primarily benefit that association's members.

  • Real estate developers.

  • Payments of existing debt.

  • Any organization that discriminates on the basis of age (18 or older), race, creed, color, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, religion, or disability.

How to apply

Full applications are accepted by invitation only.

If you would have a project you would like to be considered for an invitation, you may submit a one page Letter of Inquiry (LOI) that briefly describes your organization and the charitable work you seek to fund or request a meeting with our staff.

Contact CEO(at) or 641-437-1068 to learn more about your eligibility and get help putting together an LOI.

We receive many more requests for funding than we are able to support, and the process is competitive. Beyond alignment with our goals for long-term impact, we use several additional criteria to inform grant decisions.

Past Grantees

2020 Grant Cycle

In 2020, the foundation awarded grants to:

2020 Community Cornerstone Grantees

  • Appanoose All-Play

  • Appanoose Community Care Services

  • Chariton Valley Regional Housing Trust

  • EveryStep Hospice

  • Rathbun Lake Area YMCA

2020 Growing Good Grantees

  • Centerville-Rathbun Lake Area Chamber of Commerce

  • Reaching All People Together (RAPT)

2019 Grant Cycle

In 2019, we received letters of inquiry from 16 groups interested in funding. The foundation awarded grants to the following organizations:

2019 Community Cornerstone Grantees

  • Appanoose County Historical Society

  • Centerville Fire and Rescue

  • Kids World

  • Rathbun Lake Area YMCA

2019 Growing Good Grantee

  • The Lord's Cupboard

2018 Grant Cycle

In 2018, we heard from 33 groups interested in funding. Ultimately, the foundation awarded the following grants:

2018 Community Cornerstone Grantees

  • Drake Public Library Foundation

  • 18-80 Club

  • Historic Preservation Corporation

  • City of Exline

2018 Growing Good Grantee

  • Appanoose County Coalition for the Arts

2017 Grant Cycle

In 2017, we received letters of inquiry for grant funding from 19 qualifying nonprofits. The projects proposed spanned the range of our giving areas and came from a variety of organizations. The foundation awarded the following grants:

2017 Community Cornerstone Grantees

  • Appanoose County All-Play

  • Appanoose County Historical Society

  • Friends of Oakland Cemetery

  • Rathbun Lake Area YMCA

2017 Growing Good Grantee

  • Kids World