NewGround Guidelines

What is NewGround?

God is at always at work. He calls churches to follow Him into their communities to share Christ’s transformational love with each and every person. Cities and neighbourhoods should be impacted and blessed through the social action and thoughtful, cultural engagement of local Christians.

It’s time to roll up our sleeves and join Him.

NewGround Mission Statement

NewGround partners with churches, offering coaching and resources to help identify and establish practical, tangible, and sustainable community ministries. Together, we break new missional ground, nurturing Spirit-led ideas into healthy ministries that bear everlasting fruit.

Requirements for a NewGround Partnership

Proposals to NewGround must demonstrate a commitment to asset-based community development principles – an approach that recognizes the strengths, gifts, talents and resources of individuals and communities and helps communities mobilize and build on these for sustainable development.

Characteristics of a NewGround Application

  1. Demonstrates holistic Christian ministry
  2. Recognizes people’s strengths and responds to felt needs
  3. Promotes sustainable change
  4. Addresses injustices and systemic barriers
  5. Involves the participants
  6. Engages the Christian Reformed Church
  7. Creates partnerships with the community
  8. Ensures accountability and evaluation
  9. Attracts long-term local financial support

Types of Grants

Community Opportunity Scan: NewGround provides up to $1500 to churches undertaking a Community Opportunity Scan (COS) in their community. A COS gets churches beyond their four walls to engage with their community. Through the process of conversations and interviews, churches identify the assets, skills, resources, and potential partnership opportunities available in their community. For more information about the COS click here.

Community Ministry Support Program: As churches listen to their community and identify ministry opportunities that couple the passions and skills of their church with those of their community, opportunities for partnerships and collaboration often percolate. NewGround offers coaching, networking, and resources (which includes grant money) to churches to address the gaps and break new ground by starting sustainable community ministries. Through the 2-3 year partnership, NewGround helps churches and ministries set goals and identify areas to evaluate effectiveness.

Quick List of Conditions for Community Ministry Support Applications:

  • The maximum amount of multi-year funding paid to an applicant in the first year is $15,000 to ensure local sustainability.
  • The amount granted to an applicant declines each year for multi-year funded projects/programs.
  • The NewGround grant must constitute at least 20% but not more than 50% of a project’s total budget. The same limits apply to program funding.
  • NewGround does not normally fund capital projects such as construction and renovation to buildings. An exception will be made if the Committee determines the costs are integral to the development of the ministry.
  • NewGround will only provide funding to an applicant one time unless the Committee determines that a reasonable amount of time exists between applications.

For full details and/or an application form, contact Diaconal Ministries at 1-800-730-3490 x4304 or

Youth Justice Project: An annual program to connect young people with the deacons in their church to find innovative ways to address injustices in their community. Entrants aged 14-19 will submit a video application describing a justice issue they are passionate about and a plan for how they will engage and actively participate in their local community to address it. Two finalists will receive grant money for their cause ($6,000) plus $3,000 of coaching time and expenses.

For full details and an application form, contact Diaconal Ministries at 1-800-730-3490 x4304 or

Deacon Scholarships: An intentional investment in deacons as leaders in God’s Kingdom. Using a simple application process, NewGround offers up to $250/year per diaconate for “new ground” learning, focused on the work of deacons. Examples include: books, videos, conferences, workshops. Preference will be given to deacons (or diaconates) who have not received support previously.

Click here for full details and an application form OR contact Diaconal Ministries at 1-800-730-3490 x4304 or if you have any further questions.