NEW: Ministry & Improvement Funds for District Churches
Ministry & Improvement Fund Application (click). Created at District Conference 2019, the Ministry & Improvement Fund will provide support to PSWD congregations across the next five years. Funds are available in the following four areas:
While these funds are for physical repairs, improvements, and projects, it is the hope of the district that your congregation will prayerfully consider and discern the spiritual dimensions and aspects of these projects. We encourage you to consider how the spiritual aspects and physical aspects of these projects intersect.
1) The maximum total a congregation can receive through this grant is $20,000. There is no congregational matching funds requirement.
2) As part of the application, please provide a detailed project budget and attach any estimates you have received for your project.
3) The district encourages each congregation to enter conversations regarding the impact any project will have on ADA regulations and compliance with an ADA specialist. The district can help foster these conversations.
4) Project area examples:
a) Cosmetic – interior and exterior painting, new carpets, benches, pews, chairs, lighting
b) Technology – projection system (screen, projector, and laptop), sound system, streaming capabilities
c) Structural/Property – New Roof, Sprinkler System, A/C/Heating System, Fencing
d) Investments – Solar Panels, Astroturf, Water Softening and Filtration System
Amount: Grants of up to $10,000 per congregation or ministry project per year are awarded with a maximum of $25,000 being allocated to any one ministry project over 3 years.
Matching Funds: Requesting congregations must match up to half of the grant amount with their own resources.
Application Process: The application will require basic information such as amount requested, description of the project, budget, and goals. Affirmation that the congregation will provide matching funds and approve the project as recorded in the minutes of the congregation’s decision-making body.
Oversight & Accountability: Recipients are required to submit a written evaluation signed by the board chair and pastor at the conclusion of the grant period. Include financial accounting, an evaluation of the project, and other information specified on the reporting form. Failure to meet reporting requirements renders a congregation ineligible for future grants. In cases where grant funds are not expended for the intended purpose the Oversight Committee may request repayment of some or all of the grant amount.
1. Grants are for ministries in which members of the congregation are actively involved. They are not to be passed through the congregation to another organization that the congregation supports.
2. Fresh and creative ideas for outreach ministries are preferred.
3. A portion of a grant may be allocated to wages/salaries for staff or others involved in providing leadership for the outreach ministry that is funded.
1. Feeding program or shelter operated by the congregation.
2. Education or training events, especially if they include peace/service/justice/poverty components.
3. Community outreach events.
4. New opportunities that expand existing ministries that engage the community.
Coaching for Pastors – $350 per pastor per year will be provided to support their work with a leadership coach. Coaching is an ongoing conversation focused on personal growth or improvements in professional performance. The goal of coaching is to help resolve present issues or handle specific aspects of the job. Pastors will apply to the district indicating who they have contracted with as a coach and an annual report discussing how coaching has had a positive impact in their ministry will be expected.
Annual Conference Attendance Support – The Annual Conference, in addition to facilitating business, provides many opportunities for attendees to grow through participation at insight sessions, meal events, and other workshops, in addition to deepening a participant’s understanding of the Church of the Brethren beyond the local congregation or district. Up to twelve $1000 scholarships per year to encourage people to attend. These funds can be used to reimburse travel, registration, lodging, or meal events. Applications will be taken in January of each year with priority given to first-time attendees. A report after the conference will invite reflection on what they experienced and how their participation will enhance the local church.
(link to pdf of this application section)
Monies will be used to help local congregations grow in ministry with youth through training and program development. For purposes of this funding, youth related programs are those that work to support ages 11 through 27. Funds can also provide scholarship opportunities for youth to participate in Church of the Brethren programs like work camps, Christian Citizenship Seminar, National Youth Conference, and Brethren camps.
Maximum funding is $5,000 and the congregation is expected to cover 40% of the total cost of the request. A report following the event, or every six months for program development, will be expected.
If congregations want to collaborate on a grant for program development or training, as an incentive, the maximum percent of grant coverage will be raised to 70%, leaving 30% of costs to be split by participating congregations.
The Report Form is not available yet for churches to report their results.
Continuing: Ministry Partnership Funds for District Churches
(started in 2015) Are you looking to try something new? Want to have someone work with you or your congregation as a coach? Is your congregation a mission point in a poor or at-risk neighborhood? Ready to take on the work of revitalization? PSWD Ministry Partnership Funds provide a way for the District to partner financially with your congregation to make things happen.
- PDF Flyer from District Conference with details on each of the 4 Partnership Fund categories
- Revitalization Cohorts – Training for leaders and the congregation to revitalize the local congregation.
- Mission Congregation – Financial support when a significant portion of the church has income levels below the poverty level.
- Coaching / Training – Events to implement change inside a congregation.
- Ministry Opportunity – Help a Church with a vision and plan to engage their neighborhood with a ministry or missional opportunity.
- Link to “Flowchart” of the application to help you plan. “Ministry Partnership Fund requests submitted by the fifteenth of any month will have a response by the end of the following month. Decisions on approval of Partnership funds will be made by the Congregational Vitality Task Group, and reported to the Executive Board.”
Bible Grants – Margaret Carl Trust
Purpose of Trust Fund with current funding
- To distribute Bibles, Testaments, and Gospels
Applications are due by April 1st or October 1st each year. Applications received after those dates are considered in the next cycle. Funds should not be spent, expecting a grant, unless the applicant is prepared to pay if a grant is denied.
- Margaret Nininger Carl Trust Fund
- c/o Pacific Southwest District Church of the Brethren
- PO Box 219, La Verne, CA 91750-0219
Norma Morris is the trustee: CarlTrust@pswdcob.org Call the district office with any questions 909-406-5368