Grant Application

Golden Cross Foundation funds three broad areas of older adult ministries in the Tennessee Annual Conference:

  1. Enhancing ministries to and with older adults in United Methodist Local Churches, Districts and the Tennessee Conference.
  2. Encouraging Churches to support the needs of individual older adults in their communities.
  3. Addressing broader societal issues affecting Older Adults within the bounds of the Tennessee Conference.


  1. The ministry (program/project) must contribute directly to the mission and ministries of making disciples of Jesus Christ and must be consistent with the doctrine and social principles of the United Methodist Book of Discipline.
  2. The ministry should focus on developing intentional, innovative, and creative ministries by, with and for older adults.
  3. Applications may be submitted by local congregations, districts or other entities in the Tennessee Conference of The United Methodist Church for the purpose of developing and implementing ministries that impact the well-being of older adults.
  4. Generally ministries funded will have the following characteristics:
    1. address root causes of critical issues related to older adults;
    2. include a process for local churches (or districts or other entities) to listen, discern, and respond to the issues and concerns of older adults;
    3. enhance the spiritual faith development of older adults;
    4. demonstrate significant involvement of older adults in decision-making, development, and implementation of the program/project;
    5. be culturally sensitive and inclusive in all aspects of the program/project;
    6. demonstrate a commitment from other funding partners for ongoing support
  5. Generally grants are awarded as 50% matching grants.
  6. Grants will be awarded on a one-year basis. Grants for innovative ongoing ministries may be reapplied for, up to a total of three years provided that the program or ministry has a viable and demonstrated plan for ongoing funding after Golden Cross Funds are finished.
  7. Funds are not granted for budget deficit reduction or debt reduction.
  8. The Golden Cross Foundation Board meets 4 times per year. Due dates are generally 4-6 weeks prior to the Board Meeting to give the Grants Review Committee time to consider Grant Proposals and if necessary work with the applicant to gather additional information so as to maximize the possibility of a positive outcome by the Board. Grant Application deadlines for 2017 are: February 15, May 15, August 15, and November 15.

5 Grant programs are offered by The Golden Cross Foundation

ENCORE Ministry Grants

  1. New Older Adult Ministry Program Grants – Available to United Methodist Churches who do not presently have an active Older Adult Ministry Program and wish to start one. These grants are from $1000 to $2500. There is no match required for the first $1000, and a 50% match for additional amounts from $1001 to $2500.
  2. Growing Older Adult Ministry Program Grants – Available to United Methodist Churches with existing Older Adult Programs who wish to expand or branch out into new areas of ministry and lack the funds to do so. Grants are from $1000 to $2500 and are 50% matching grants.

Golden Cross Foundation Grants

  1. Fred and June Blankenship Grants for Individual Assistance – Available to United Methodist Churches wishing to assist older adults in their church or community with personal and/or financial needs which neither the church nor the individual can fully fund. Grants are from $1000 to $4,000 depending on need and are 50% matching grants.
  2. Church Retro-Fit Fund Grants – Available to United Methodist Churches, or Conference/Districts to make their facilities accessible to Older Adults so that they may fully participate in the activities of the church. The maximum amount of these grants is $10,000 and they are 50% matching grants.
  3. Older Adult Community Service Grants – Available to United Methodist Churches, or Conference/Districts and related agencies to do training, empowering or advocacy around Older Adult Issues, as well as other grant applications that seek to serve and empower Older Adults in the Tennessee Conference of the United Methodist Church. The usual range of these grants is $1000 to $10,000 and are usually 50% matching grants.

Application Question #9

The items below correspond to Question 9 sections A through E and are intended to help the applicant know more fully what the Board is looking for in each section.

  • Stating the Problem/Need
    • What are the issues or needs that are being addressed by the church, district, or other TN Conference related entity requesting these funds?
    • Have the persons who will benefit from this ministry been involved in the decisions about the proposed ministry?
  • Description of the Ministry
    • Please describe in detail the proposed ministry or program for which funds are requested.
    • What are the desired outcomes of this ministry?
    • What are the steps that must be taken to be successful in this ministry?
    • Have there been previous attempts to address the issue/need?
    • Is there any other group in your community with a similar program?
  • Budget
    • Attach a complete, detailed budget for this ministry or program.
    • List Income from all sources, ( remembering that Golden Cross Foundation Grants are generally 50% matching grants). Include both cash and in-kind income.
    • List all expected expenses.
    • If this is an ongoing program or ministry, how will the program be funded after the end of Golden Cross Grant funding?
  • Leadership
    • Who are the persons involved in the leadership of the ministry?
    • Are a majority of the decision-makers, for this ministry, older adults?
  • Evaluation Plan
    • Evaluation lets us know what a ministry looks like in operation, as well as the results it is achieving. How are you going to evaluate this ministry?
      • Who will handle the evaluation?
      • What methods will you use to evaluate?
    • ENCORE Ministries requires a written ministry evaluation within twelve (12) months after receiving a grant from the Golden Cross Foundation.

When Your Application is Complete:

Mail completed application form (pages 6-7, including Attachments A-E) to:

Kent McNish, Executive Director
Golden Cross Foundation
304 South Perimeter Park Drive, Suite 9 Nashville, TN 37211
Fax: 615-871-8111

If Your Grant Application is Approved

If your grant application is approved and funded, you will:

  1. Be notified by mail (email and/or phone call) no later than two (2) weeks following the approval of your application.
  2. Be asked to sign and return an Agreement Form.
  3. Receive a check for the full amount of the grant (unless other specific details are indicated upon grant approval).
  4. Be asked to evaluate the program/project within twelve (12) months of receiving the grant award. This evaluation shall include photos of the ministry and at least a 500 word description/summary of the ministry

An evaluation report must be completed and submitted along with photos and supporting documents within 12 months of receiving Grant Funding from the Golden Cross Foundation.