Make it Happen!

In Switch, we learned to ″direct the rider,″ ″motivate the elephant,″ and ″shape the path.″ MAKE IT HAPPEN! is about taking ideas from Switch and using them to make this a great place to live. How do you follow the ″bright spots,″ ″script the critical moves,″ ″find the feeling,″ and ″shrink the change?″ For things to change, somebody somewhere has to start acting differently. Is that you? MAKE IT HAPPEN!

Make It Happen! (MIH) will engage more people and organizations in the transformation of the Dan River Region. The goal is for more residents to be involved in making this a community of ″bright spots and success stories.″ This effort is an opportunity to expand the conversation and action around neighborhood and community issues. MIH! will be a catalyst for community leaders and citizens who are passionate about improving the region′s quality of life. MIH! will encourage people to take action for positive change.

The following objectives will guide this initiative:

  • Create small grant initiatives/community campaigns that engage the passion of individuals, religious entities, nonprofits, and local governments;
  • Demonstrate the possible through transformative actions by dedicated leaders partnering with organizations to make a difference in neighborhoods and communities in the DRF service region;
  • Provide grant funding up to $10,000.00 to make something happen;
  • Produce results that will positively impact a portion of the region′s citizens, going beyond the constituents of the lead organization;
  • Document results and complete individual projects/grants within 90 days or less; and
  • Report and publicize how funds were used and what the project accomplished to the public.

Criteria for Applying for MIH! Grant
MIH! grant applicants must meet the following conditions:

  • Grant recipients must be a recognized nonprofit, religious institution or local governmental entity. The recipient can be a ″fiscal agent″ for others, as long as the purpose is charitable.
  • A passionate project leader is crucial for this request. The project must clearly define how, what and why the effort will have community benefits.
  • Benefits must be concrete and tangible to people in this region.
  • The impact of the project must go beyond the sponsoring organization.
  • The project must relate to at least one of DRF′s focus areas in health, education, workforce development, community capacity, and economic development.
  • Funds are to be used for charitable purposes and must benefit communities or neighborhoods.
  • Funds provided by DRF will need to be used in 90 days or less. The recipient must report the use of funding and the results of the effort to DRF.
  • DRF will assist with publicizing results of each project 30 days after grant completion.
  • Organizations can apply for more than one Make It Happen grant per year; however, each project must be distinct.

Application Process
The application process is simple and quick. Submit up to three pages in a letter explaining what the applicant wants to see happen and why (similar to the Letter of Inquiry). Applicant must be clear about demonstrated community benefits and results, requested amount, a budget, time frame, and partnerships:

  • Application can be submitted electronically, mailed and⁄or hand-delivered to DRF.
  • Successful grants will receive up to $10,000, but can be less.
  • Program Officers will participate in application review process based upon the focus of each grant request, and
  • Project /grant decisions will be made in two weeks or less by DRF′s President and CEO.  

 MIH! Grant Types Not Supported

  • DRF′s Make It Happen! grant program DOES NOT fund general core programs or operations because of budget shortfalls and cuts;
  • Grant requests that directly benefit client /constituent services or the organization;
  • Grants to individuals, dinners, fundraisers, or faith-based institutions for religious purposes;
  • No grants to for-profit efforts;
  • Grants that supplant or substitute for existing funding;
  • Broad, unfocused requests;
  • Requests that cannot be completed in 90 days or require more than $10,000 from DRF.

 DRF is a catalyst for innovation and an agent for transformation. The Foundation is committed to activities, programs, and organizations that address the health, education, and well-being of residents of Danville and Pittsylvania County in Virginia and Caswell County, North Carolina.