Faith-based Organizations

Are faith-based organizations eligible recipients and sub-recipients of the CoC and ESG Programs? (CoC: § 578.87(b) and ESG: § 576.406)

Yes, religious or faith-based organizations may be CoC- and ESG-funded. Neither the federal government, state or local government receiving funds under the CoC or ESG programs may discriminate against an organization on the basis of the organization’s religious character or affiliation.

Looking for definitions of the common CoC and ESG Program terms referenced throughout the Virtual Binders?

Virtual Binders Glossary

Faith-based organizations receiving funding through the CoC or ESG programs may use such funds without impairing their independence, autonomy, expression of religious beliefs, or religious character. Such an organization may continue to carry out its mission, including definition, development, practice, and expression of religious belief, so long as it does not use direct program funds to support or engage in explicitly religious activities such as worship, religious instruction, or proselytization.

Any religious organization that receives CoC or ESG Program funds as a recipient or subrecipient:

  • Retains its independence from federal, state, and local governments
  • May continue to carry out its mission
  • May use space in its facility to provide CoC or ESG Program-funded services without removing religious art or symbols
  • Retains authority over its internal governance
  • May retain religious terms in its organization’s name, select its board members on a religious basis, and include religious references in its organization’s mission statement and other governing documents