Nonprofit Rapid Response Mini-Grant – FAQ

Frequently Asked Questions

Is my organization eligible for this grant?

Eligible organizations must be a 501c3 and must be able to provide proof of nonprofit status by uploading a letter from the IRS stating status. Letters from the Secretary of State, by-laws, articles or incorporation or other statements not issued by the IRS will not be accepted.

Eligible nonprofits must be based in the city of Jackson, Mississippi or be served by the Jackson municipal water system (including parts of Byram), who were affected by Jackson’s most recent boil water notice and subsequent system failure.

Churches may also apply. If you are church that does not currently hold 501c3 status, please upload a letter stating your exemption where the 501c3 status upload is required.

Unfortunately, government agencies, businesses and LLC’s are not eligible for this grant opportunity.

If you are a charitable organization or church that is not operating as a 501c3 or an organization currently operating under another 501c3’s fiscal sponsorship, please contact CFM’s Director of Strategic Impact, Melody Moody Thortis at to determine eligibility.


What expenses are eligible?

Expenses submitted to CFM for reimbursement should be unplanned, un-budgeted expenses (related to water needs) and must be related to charitable service. Expenses must specifically be related to the Jackson water crisis incurred between July 29 – September 15, 2022. Expenses must NOT have been paid by another grant source.

Eligible expenses for reimbursement expended between 7/29 – 9/15 include:

  • Reimbursement for purchased water or ice
  • Reimbursement for rentals related to the distribution of or lack of water related to your charitable purposes. These may include: rentals of vehicles, trailers or other transportation specifically related to the distribution of water and water related needs for charitable purposes and/or reimbursement for port-a potty rentals made necessary due to the water crisis and made available to the recipients of charitable services.
  • Reimbursement of purchases of paper products, hygiene products, paper, plastic or bamboo utensils or other disposable items specifically related to the water crisis and outside of your organization’s normal expenditures.
  • Reimbursement of mileage incurred directly by a nonprofit or charitable organization and related directly to water delivery or procurement. Please note: Cost related to travel mileage must have been incurred by the nonprofit/charitable organization itself (such as the use of an organization’s owned or rented vehicle) or, if a personal car was driven, the organization must have reimbursed employees for mileage or gas expenses.

As you submit your expenses, please ask yourself:

  • Was this expense necessary and responsive to needs related to the water crisis and used for charitable service? Did I clearly explain how this was related in my narrative?
  • Was this expense unplanned or outside or normal budgeted expectations?
  • Was this expense strictly for water, ice, disposables, hygiene items, transportation rentals or nonprofit incurred mileage directly related to the distribution of water between July 29th – September 15th?
  • Does my proof of purchase (receipts or other required documentation) clearly exhibit the place of purchase and itemization of my purchase for eligible expenses and items listed above? Are receipts legible? Have I highlighted the parts that are eligible.

*Please note: Unreadable receipts/documentation or ineligible items will not be considered for award.


I don’t have receipts, is there something else I can submit to be eligible for this grant? 

Itemized receipts are preferred. However, if you are unable to provide receipts, you must submit a document(s) from each of the two acceptable choices below. Please submit the documents as one PDF or Word document within the space provided for receipts in the grant application.

  • Proof of Payment. This may include a cancelled check or bank statement or credit card statement with specific grant expenses highlighted.


  • Proof of Payment must include a signed letter from either the Board president/Chair or the Board’s Treasurer. This person should be different from the person submitting the grant application.

Other methods of payment:

  • Staff paid for expense and was reimbursed by organization: If payment was incurred by a staff member (such as the Executive Director) and the payment for water expenses was reimbursed by the organization, you must also submit both items above, with the letter from your board president/chair or treasurer must state how the funds were used in regards to water needs and state that the cost incurred by staff was reimbursed from the nonprofit organization’s funds.
  • Cost paid to vendor by invoice: If water costs were paid by invoice, you must upload both a copy of the invoice on vendor’s letterhead in addition to proof of payment listed above. Invoice must include the invoice date, amount billed and a description of the billed items and any additional costs incurred (taxes, delivery, etc.)

Please note: All costs must not have been reimbursed from other sources and other sources must not be obligated to reimburse them. Recipients must support all expenses with adequate documentation and must agree (by checking the box at the end of the application) that these expenses were related to the Jackson water crisis.


What file types are accepted for uploads?

  • Receipts may be submitted as PDF’s, JPG’s and PNG’s.
  • All receipts and uploads must be legible and submitted as one document.

*Please make all efforts to submit uploads as one document. If you experience technical difficulties, you may upload a document that includes a link to a Dropbox or Google file that includes your documentation. These links MUST be accessible and not password protected. 


After reading the grant application and FAQ list, it doesn’t seem like my charitable organization is eligible for this grant. We still need help, what can I do now?

We understand that not every charitable organization may have not kept receipts for their water and ice purchases as they were responding to an immediate need. If future funding is made available, we ask that you keep and scan your receipts related to water expenses going forward.

If you would like to be contacted for future grant opportunities, please sign up for our newsletter and follow us on social media. Details are provided in the question below.


Does the Community Foundation for Mississippi have any other grant funding currently available?

Due to the ongoing needs related to the COVID-19 pandemic and the Jackson water crisis, CFM does not currently have any competitive grants open.

Find out about new competitive grant opportunities first by signing up for our newsletter to be added to our contact list. Those included in our communications will be the first to hear about future grant opportunities. Sign up for our newsletter here.

You can also follow us on social media:

If your nonprofit is located in downtown Jackson or operates in Warren, Adams or Pike County and you would like to work with the Community Foundation for Mississippi, please contact CFM’s Director of Strategic Impact, Melody Moody Thortis at


How can I donate to the Community Foundation for Mississippi’s ongoing work?

The Community Foundation for Mississippi is dedicated to serving the needs of nonprofits and charitable organizations throughout central and southwest Mississippi. If you would like to help provide funding and support for nonprofit and local needs, please consider making a donation to the following funds:

  • The Helping Friends and Neighbors Fund (Disaster Relief Fund) at the Community Foundation for Mississippi was created to respond to disasters in Mississippi, primarily in CFM’s coverage area of central and southwest Mississippi. A donation to this fund will help wrap around needs related to Jackson’s water issues.
  • The JPS Response Fund at the Community Foundation for Mississippi has been established to offer financial assistance to the Jackson Public School (JPS) district and its schools for challenges caused by declared disasters, emergencies and Acts of God. A donation to this fund will help support specific needs related to the ongoing water crisis throughout the Jackson Public School district.
  • The For Mississippi Campaign exists to grow the work of the Community Foundation for Mississippi to make meaningful and lasting change in central and southwest Mississippi. A donation to this fund will allow your investment to extend beyond Jackson’s water crisis and will support CFM’s ongoing work to make a significant impact for good in Mississippi.


Looking to start a fund or make a corporate gift to support this work? Contact CFM today at