Self-Development of People of Central Virginia offers grants of up to $2,500 to organizations working on issues of poverty, injustice, and oppression. Qualifying for grants is not dependent on religious affiliation in any way. Grants are open to all who satisfy the program’s basic requirements.

Who Qualifies?

Decisions regarding who appropriately qualifies for SDOP of Central Virginia grants are based on a consistent set of principles and criteria uniformly recognized by local, national, and international affiliates. These principles and criteria can be summarized in the following manner (all must apply):

  1. Organizations composed of and controlled by a majority of members who are economically poor and/or oppressed.
  2. Organizations for whom the economically poor and/or oppressed are the primary beneficiaries of program successes.
  3. Organizations addressing long term correction of conditions that keep people bound by poverty and oppression.
  4. Organizations not advocating violence.
  5. Organizations demonstrating a reasonable level of financial awareness and a budget capable of realistically supporting the objectives of the program.
  6. Organizations with the ability and willingness to demonstrate progress towards the program’s stated goals and objectives.

Organizations applying for a grant also must operate in one or more of the following Virginia counties or a city within this geographic area: Albemarle, Amelia, Brunswick, Caroline, Charles City, Chesterfield, Culpeper, Dinwiddie, Essex, Goochland, Greene, Greensville, Hanover, Henrico, King & Queen, King George, King William, Lancaster, Louisa, Lunenburg, Madison, Mecklenburg, New Kent, Northumberland, Nottoway, Orange, Powhatan, Prince George, Richmond, Spotsylvania, Stafford, Sussex, or Westmoreland.

Application Process

Each year SDOP of Central Virginia accepts applications for funding between June 1 and August 31. Rankings and final determinations will be made in September with grants awarded in October.

The application process is composed of three stages:

Funds are limited and not all applicants who successfully complete the first two stages of the process are guaranteed grants. Applicants who qualify for stage three of the process will be ranked based on strength of compliance with Self-Development’s criteria and awards made based on available funds.

Your preliminary application will be officially acknowledged and feedback provided on whether there is an acceptable match with SDOP’s program objectives. If the preliminary application passes initial screening applicants will be provided information on strengths and weaknesses and encouraged to submit a detailed application.


Please call Presbytery of the James at (804) 262-2074 or email the office. A member of the SDOP of Central Virginia committee will return your call or email as soon as possible.