Mural Artists (above): Michael J. McBride

Give Black, Give Back Nonprofit Connections

Connections for Nonprofits led by African Americans and serving African Americans to Engage with The Community Foundation:

The Community Foundation initiated its discretionary grantmaking in 1994 and since that time has made grants to thousands of nonprofit organizations from Middle Tennessee, including many led by African Americans and many serving the African American community.

The team leading grantmaking at The Foundation welcomes and encourages organizations new to the process to reach out and learn more about the resources available to support the work of the nonprofit community.

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CFMT Discretionary Grantmaking

The Community Foundation awards grants annually to nonprofits for a broad array of charitable purposes in areas such as education, the environment, the arts, health, and social services. Applications for discretionary grants are accepted annually from tax-exempt, nonprofit organizations serving Middle Tennessee. We are particularly interested in grant proposals addressing currently unmet community needs and providing long-term solutions.

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The Community Foundation launched this database of high-quality, comprehensive information about more than 1,800 Middle Tennessee nonprofits more than a decade ago as a service to both donors and nonprofits. features information on nonprofit programming, financials, management, and governance. Organizations with updated profiles are eligible to apply for The Community Foundation’s discretionary grant process and to participate in The BigPayback.

In addition to The Community Foundation’s opportunities,  the following funders also require a completed Giving Matters profile to apply for grants:

AWC Foundation, Caterpillar Financial, Frist Foundation, HCA Foundation, The Healing Trust, Joe C. Davis Foundation, Maddox Fund, Memorial Foundation,  Metro Arts Commission, Nashville Predators Foundation, Suntrust (Truist) Foundation, Turner Foundation, United Way of Greater Nashville and others.


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The Big Payback

The BigPayback is a 24-hour, online giving event created to increase philanthropy in the 40 counties of Middle Tennessee. In its first six years, The Big Payback has helped raise nearly $17 million dollars for more than 1,000 nonprofit, school, and faith-based organizations.

“Nonprofits do important, life-changing work every day across Middle Tennessee,” said Ellen Lehman, president of The Community Foundation of Middle Tennessee. “Over the years, The Big Payback has become an opportunity for us to come together as a community to support their efforts and recognize the positive impact they have on our neighbors. It’s an easy and meaningful way for us to show our local pride, give back, and make an enormous impact in so doing.”


The Healing Trust supports nonprofits that provide health services in Middle Tennessee by providing grants, retreats, leadership programs, and engaging in advocacy. The Trust’s purpose is to facilitate access to compassionate healthcare services for people with limited access to resources in Middle Tennessee. The Healing Trust awards grants quarterly and, to date, has awarded around $95 million to almost 400 health-related agencies in Middle Tennessee.

In addition to providing grants, The Trust also provides resources for health-related nonprofits and other service agencies including complimentary space for board meetings, trainings, and retreats, workshops, self-care retreats, leadership programs, awards, and sabbatical grants to help these critical nonprofits operate and serve their communities. Grants are awarded to agencies focused on sustaining essential health programs and growing vital programs where rising need is documented, (e.g. child advocacy centers, federally qualified health centers, domestic violence shelters, mental health organizations, etc.)

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Urban League of Middle Tennessee

The Urban League of Middle Tennessee (ULMT) is a historic civil rights and urban advocacy organization, providing direct services that impact and improve the lives of thousands in underserved communities across Middle Tennessee.

The Urban League spearheads the development of social programs and authoritative public policy research, and advocates for policies and services that close the equality gap. At the community level, the Urban League of Middle Tennessee and its affiliates provide direct services that improve the lives of thousands of people annually.

The mission of the Urban League is to promote economic empowerment through education and job training, housing and community development, workforce development, entrepreneurship, health, and quality of life.

As a partner of the Give Black, Give Back initiative, Urban League assists with training in the areas of marketing, grantwriting, board governance, and business finance for up to five nonprofits that are in need of updating the pertinent information on GivingMatters profile pages.

Philanthropy is commendable, but it must not cause the philanthropist to overlook the circumstances of economic injustice which make philanthropy necessary.

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

Advisory Committee: Give Black | Give Back

Pictured: Give Black, Give Back’s advisory committee members Eric Brown, Kia Jarmon, Lisa Swift Young, Antonio Young attending the 52nd Annual Equal Opportunity Luncheon in late February 2020.

Contact Information

Audra Cox

Audra Cox

Development Manager, Donor Services

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