August 2023

CFM Announces 2023 Community Impact Grant Recipients

The Community Foundation for Mississippi announces twenty grant recipients through its Community Impact Grants to support projects aligned with CFM’s focus areas: children and families, community partnerships and placemaking. This grant program supports project grants up to $5,000 for organizations within CFM’s 22 county service area. All Community Impact Grants are supported through its donor-supported Community Trust Fund. Four grants were funded by our donor advised funds after sharing unfunded grant opportunities.

Learn more about our recipients

CACM Launches Endowment Fund at CFM and Matching Gift Campaign

If you could help Mississippi children in abusive situations have a streamlined experience to report trauma, would you? That’s a question the Children’s Advocacy Centers of Mississippi (CACM) asks often.

With a new endowment fund at the Community Foundation for Mississippi, CACM hopes to support its mission to revolutionize child abuse – forever.

For over 20 years, CACM and its affiliated children’s advocacy centers have provided a community-based, child-friendly, and trauma-informed network to coordinate a multidisciplinary response to child maltreatment allegations. At a children’s advocacy center, children can speak to a forensic interviewer trained to understand child development, manage bias, and identify secondary trauma and other best practices for interviewing children.

Thanks to an anonymous donor, CACM is kickstarting the fund with a $50,000 matching challenge during the month of September.

Learn more and give today!

The Impossible Becoming Possible: Briarwood Arts Center

At Briarwood Arts Center (BAC), what may seem impossible becomes possible. BAC is building a bigger table for entrepreneurs and hobbyists to explore an interest and for the community to gather. With the creation of two funds at the Community Foundation for Mississippi, the Briarwood Arts Foundation Fund and Briarwood Arts Foundation Endowment Fund, Brown recognizes BAC is starting out on the right foot from inception and getting the back-end support from CFM he needs.

Full story

Making Space for Film in Mississippi: Mississippi Film Society

Ryan Parker (center) stands with Thabi Moyo (left) and Nina Parikh (right) of the Mississippi Film Office at Sundance Film Festival in 2020.

Growing up in Brookhaven, movies were a big part of Ryan Parker’s life. On weekends, he was refreshing his stack of VHS rentals. Or, attending the local four-screen movie theatre – a luxury not offered in many small Mississippi towns.

“Film brings together writing, visuals, music – all of it together. I don’t know of anything like it. I think good films can change your life. I think they can change the way you see the world, the way you see other people,” said Parker, reflecting on the power of film. “They are empathy engines, in my mind, when done well. I think about films in my life that had as much impact as any class I’ve taken or sermon I’ve sat through. Bringing films like that to Mississippi, creating space and setting the table for that is so important.”

While his weekends at Brookhaven’s Regal Cinema are behind him, Parker has his sights on building a bigger table for film in Mississippi through the newly formed Mississippi Film Society. He hopes to use the organization as a launching pad to educate, inspire and entertain Mississippians through community screenings, film curriculum, lectures, workshops and, in the near future, a film festival. To help bring his vision to life, Parker recently opened the Mississippi Film Society Fund and Mississippi Film Society Endowment Fund at the Community Foundation for Mississippi to support operations and ensure sustainability for generations to come.

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Learn more about CFM's journalism project, funded by Microsoft and W.K. Kellogg Foundation

Since 2018, the Community Foundation for Mississippi has been connecting philanthropy with ways to make a strategic impact around journalism in Mississippi. In 2023, the Community Foundation, in partnership with Red Window Communications, began researching the methods of Constructive Journalism, as defined and advocated by the Denmark-based Constructive Institute. This method of journalism aims to help societies come together and find common ground, as opposed to emphasizing conflict and opposing viewpoints. The goal is not to smooth over problems, but rather to add hope.

Questions we have been pursuing include:

  • Can journalism bring people together in Mississippi? How? Why?
  • What gaps and opportunities do people in Mississippi see in their state and local coverage?
  • How can journalism bring unengaged and marginalized groups into civic dialogue?
  • Can adopting a different role help existing media outlets better serve their communities AND financially survive? How?

To ground our efforts in a Mississippi audience perspective, we interviewed a diverse group of people from every corner of the state. Our audience saw value both in journalism’s traditional purposes and in its opportunities to move things forward in Mississippi.

On September 19, join us along with media members and other community members statewide to learn, ask questions and share their feedback about Constructive Journalism. The virtual meeting will share examples of what this method looks like in practice. We will also share ideas from Mississippians about topics they think could benefit from this approach.

Learn more and RSVP here
Other Grant Opportunies
CFM offers this list as a resource, for inquiries around each grant, please inquire directly with the funder of that initiative.  

Statewide Grant

The Mississippi Arts Commission mini-grant application for individuals and organizations opens on October 1. Mini-grants for Organizations are matching grants designed to support professional development and capacity building for arts organizations. Mississippi-based non-profit organizations and government entities are also eligible to receive Mini-Grants to hire professional artists such as those listed on MAC’s Artist Roster and Teaching Artist Roster. LLC’s and other for-profit businesses are NOT eligible to apply for MAC grants. Learn more here.

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