[Skip to Content]
English | Spanish

COMPASS Initiative® Core Grant

The Emory University COMPASS Coordinating Center offers Core Grants of up to $4,500 per organization to support a variety of organizational and staff resources, including technology and software, meeting space costs, conference attendance fees, professional development, and continuing education. Funding requests must be related to building organizational capacity in one of the following areas: (1) governance and leadership; (2) mission, values, and strategy; (3) finance and administration; (4) resource development; (5) strategic relationships and coalition building; (6) communications; (7) internal management and operations; or (8) service delivery and impact, and must be clearly described in the application.  Core grant applications are accepted on an ongoing basis, and are reviewed twice each month by an internal team of reviewers. An initial response to completed applications will be given within 14 business days after receipt.  Applicants will be contacted if there are questions or if additional information is required to process an application. All services related to requests are expected to be completed within three (3) months of the date that funding/support is released. A final report will be required upon completion.

Applications will be accepted as long as funds are available.


  • Currently, 501(c)(3) organizations (or organizations with a fiscal sponsor) are eligible for Core grant support
  • Applicant organizations must reside in one of the (9) Deep South states (AL, FL, GA, LA, MS, NC, SC, TN, TX)
  • Funding requests should not include items currently covered by other funding resources
  • Requests must have the support of the applicant organization’s leadership 
  • Must be currently doing HIV work for at least 2 years
  • Applicants must be Community-Based Organizations that meet at least one (1) of the following:  
    • Is an AIDS Service Organization (ASO)
    • Is a community-based organization that prioritizes HIV/AIDS prevention or care services
    • Is a community-based organization with a substantial budgetary investment in HIV-related programming
  • Treating healthcare organizations are NOT eligible for Core Grant funding.  Treating healthcare organizations are defined as organizations that provide medical care directly to patients, including services or medical care provided by an MD, DO, NP, PA, or PharmD who either (1) practices medicine with patients; (2) prescribes drugs to patients; or (3) dispenses drugs to patients.)*
  • Funds are NOT available to support medical staff, medical devices or equipment and/or to medical services or medically-related programming.
  • Funds are NOT available for technology to help provide medical care, services, or support.
  • Purchases for Technology from Amazon or wholesale stores is unallowable.

NOTE:  Organizations that do not meet these eligibility requirements are INELIGIBLE for funding.

Core Grant Funding Area(s)
Please note:  Emory COMPASS Coordinating Center will not consider proposals for funding that require in-person engagement until further notice, and will reconsider our decision related to funding that impacts in-person projects in January 2021. Please click here for more information.

The Core Grant offers four (4) opportunities for funding support:

  1. Technology
  2. Staff Continuing Education Support
  3. Community Meeting Space Support
  4. All Capacity Building Support

Requirements for Applying for a Core Grant:
*Organizations can be awarded once in each funding type within the same year. 

Funding Type Requirements


(Up to $4,500)

  • Must provide a budget with three (3) quotes for equipment, software, or related training, or a statement of justification if from a sole (single) source provider. Each quote must include the name of the product(s), cost of the product(s), and the name and contact information for the vendor.
  • Applicants must have an IT infrastructure that can support the new equipment/software and future maintenance costs (e.g. physical plant, qualified staff support, software licensing renewals, service plan, etc.).
  • All requests are FINAL; no ongoing maintenance, licensing, or support will be provided after the initial purchase.
  • Purchases from Amazon or wholesale stores is unallowable.
  • Note: Technology requests, and other highly specialized service needs may take up to 60-days for processing and approval.

 Organizations may receive funding for technology requests once every 3 years.

Staff Continuing Education Support

(Up to $4,500)

  • Mentoring/Twinning travel and expenses, conference travel, training travel and expenses are allowable requests.
  • Services provided by an affiliated organization or a consultant not referred by COMPASS Initiative staff will be considered on a case-by-case basis.
  • The Emory University Rollins School of Public Health COMPASS Coordinating Center will pay for a training/class and will provide a travel stipend toward travel costs (up to $200).
  • Requests requiring support for travel or that have deadlines must be made no less than 3 months in advance of the conference/meeting.
  • Budget required

Organizations may receive funding for staff continuing education requests once per year.

Community Meeting Space Support

(Up to $4,500)

  • This can include refreshments, space, and AV rental costs.
  • This does NOT include conference sponsorship and/or planning. 
  • Funds are intended to support consortium, network, or other community meetings that are NOT currently supported by CDC, NIH, or other funding organizations.
  • Cannot support a convening that charges a registration fee
  • Budget required.

Organizations may receive funding for community meeting space requests once per year.

All Capacity Buidling Support

(Up to $7,000)

  • Must propose a capacity building project that pertains to one (1) of ECCC’s eight (8) capacity building areas  (1) governance and leadership; (2) mission, values, and strategy; (3) finance and administration; (4) resource development; (5) strategic relationships and coalition building; (6) communications; (7) internal management and operations; or (8) service delivery and impact
  • Request cannot contain programmatic services.
  • Must exhibit strengthened capacity to expand the ability to carry out the mission of the organization.
  • Project must be able to be accomplished by December 2020.
  • May relate to the impact of COVID-19 such as office or organization modifications to assist with health guidelines and social distancing.
Organizations may receive funding for all capacity building requests once per year.

Limitations and Unallowable Expenses:

  • Reimbursements for items/services purchased or initiated prior to the submission of this funding request will not be supported.
  • Awarded organizations that do not complete final assessments and/or reports, or use awarded funds for unintended purposes will not be eligible to receive any future funding from the Emory University Rollins School of Public Health COMPASS Coordinating Center.
  • Only one Core grant request will be accepted at a time per organization. Organizations that are national, with multiple locations, or serve as a branch or satellite of a larger entity are considered one organization not separate entities.
  • Core Grants for Staff Continuing Education Support and/or Community Convening Support will be funded once per year.
  • Core Grants for Technology will only be funded once every 3 years.
  • Purchases for Technology from Amazon or wholesale stores is unallowable.
  • Applications for funding through multiple funding mechanisms supported by the Emory COMPASS Coordinating Center will typically not be approved (i.e. PoWER Institute or Transformative Grant).

Submitting a Complete Application:
A complete Core Grant application includes the following:

  1. Completed Application form
  2. Project Narrative
  3. 501(c)(3) verification OR letter from a fiscal sponsor
  4. Adherence to the Budget and Quote guidance
  5. Line-item organizational operating budget as it pertains to the area of funding request (i.e. organizational budget for technology or continued education)
  6. Proof of completion of the Non-Profit Organizational Capacity Building Assessment (more information provided in the application) 

Submission Process: The submission process should take no more than 30 minutes. The Emory COMPASS Coordinating Center staff will respond within fourteen (14) business days post-submission.


Please return to the Home page to apply for this funding opportunity.