Souls Grown Deep Community Partnership is dedicated to improving the quality of life of communities that gave rise to the art made by African American artists of the South in the care of the Souls Grown Deep Foundation. We advance our mission by fostering economic empowerment, racial and social justice, and educational advancement in select regions across the Southeast. The Partnership derives its name from a 1921 poem by Langston Hughes (1902-67) titled The Negro Speaks of Rivers, the last line of which is "My soul has grown deep like the rivers.”



Our Goals in Grant-Making
The Community Partnership has limited funds for grant-making. The resources we have are directed to improving the social, cultural, and economic circumstances of communities giving rise to the artists represented in the Souls Grown Deep Foundation collection, and to supporting other organizations with common goals. We look to help expand effective programs or facilitate new strategic partnerships and sustainable collaborations.

Grant Recipients
We identify high-impact organizations that align with our interests and invite them to submit a proposal. Additionally, the Community Partnership reserves a portion of its funds to be allocated at the discretion of the trustees. Souls Grown Deep does not encourage unsolicited proposals.

Eligibility Requirements
To be eligible for funding, applicants must be non-profit organizations that are organized and operated for charitable purposes and recognized by the IRS as tax-exempt public charities under Sections 501(c)(3) and 509(a) of the Internal Revenue Code. Public educational institutions without an IRS determination letter may also be eligible to receive grants. We do not fund: individuals, government agencies, for-profit businesses, private foundations, organizations that do not have a Federal Tax ID number, or Project Related Investments (PRIs).

Selection Process
All invited proposals are reviewed by Community Partnership staff. Staff may contact applicants with questions and request more information before presenting a summary of each proposal and a funding recommendation to the Board of Trustees. Proposals are assessed based on:

  • Their alignment with the Foundation’s funding priorities;
  • The organization’s capacity to carry out the expected activities;
  • How effectively the proposed activities can address an expressed need in the community; and
  • The likelihood of achieving measurable, positive impact.