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About SCI

This program establishes a national model for strengthening communities by pairing university faculty with community organizations to implement geographically-based projects. 

Community organizations in west Tennessee, eastern Arkansas, and north Mississippi are eligible. SCI supports projects that address three key goals:

  • Organizational Capacity Building: SCI supports projects that strengthen and enable the community partner organization to build its structures, systems, people, and skills so that it can achieve greater performance and impact. 

  • Geographically-based Projects: SCI supports projects that clearly identify and impact a defined geographic community; for example a neighborhood, street, housing complex, or work site. However, projects that do not have a geographic focus but instead target a group of people who share a common interest and represent a significantly underserved population will also be considered.

  • Engaged Scholarship & Student Involvement: SCI supports projects that demonstrate evidence of engaged scholarship and student involvement as a significant component of their project. Engaged scholarship involves faculty members and students in academic projects in a sustained manner with community groups; connects university outreach with community organizational goals; and furthers productive relationships between the university and the community.

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The Strengthening Communities grant awards are generously funded by The Community Foundation of Greater Memphis (CFGM), the United Way of the Mid-South (UWMS)and the University of Memphis Engaged Scholarship Committee. The program is administered by the School for Urban Affairs and Public Policy at the University of Memphis.

Thank you for your interest in the Strengthening Communities Initiative.

We will announce dates for the 2013 Interest Meetings (for the 2014 grant cycle) in September, 2013.

For reference, click here for the 2013 Capacity Building Grant RFP and here for the 2013 Small Grants RFP.

Online Engagement

Institute for Philanthropy and Nonprofit Leadership (IPNL)

Strengthening Communities Initiative

School of Urban Affairs and Public Policy (SUAPP)

Community Foundation of Greater Memphis

United Way of the MidSouth

Engaged Scholarship Faculty Committee

Strengthening Communities Initiative
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University of Memphis
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Last Updated: 8/21/14