Donor FAQs

What is an endowment?

An endowment is a permanent fund that is invested. The income is used for charitable purposes, while the principal is never spent. Endowments allow donors to make impactful grants today while also creating a legacy that will continue to support our community forever.

Why should I create a fund?

By having a fund at the Community Foundation, your values will continue to have a presence in your community for generations to come. Partnering with the Foundation will give you the benefits of flexibility and efficiency in your charitable giving. Because the Foundation’s legal status as a public charity is already in place, a fund can be established and the maximum tax advantages secured in a short amount of time.

What services do I receive as a fundholder?

The Community Foundation provides the IRS reporting, fund accounting, investment management, and financial accountability for funds. The Community Foundation assures that all grant and scholarship recipients meet the IRS criteria for tax-exempt status and that the monies granted are used for the intended purpose. Where appropriate, the Community Foundation advises potential grant recipients of the donor’s intent to request proposals or fund certain categories of interest. Donors receive quarterly fund statements and are kept informed of special community needs, grant opportunities, and high quality organizations. Fundholders can also access and manage their fund 24/7 through our online Donor Portal.

What are the financial benefits and tax advantages of making a gift through the Community Foundation?

The Foundation offers a number of important financial benefits through charitable giving. Because we manage many funds, administrative costs and service fees for your fund are minimized. Gifts to the Foundation receive the maximum tax advantage allowed by law.

How do I set up a fund?

Starting a fund is simple and can easily be done in a day. You can set up an unrestricted fund to help meet a variety of needs within the community, or specify a purpose or area of concern to support with a field of interest fund. Some donors choose a designated fund which identifies a single charitable organization to support. Others opt for a donor advised fund, which allows active involvement in recommending grants. You also may name the fund you create – for yourself, a spouse, family members, a company, or a friend.

What are the costs in setting up a fund?

There is no cost to establish a fund at the Community Foundation. The Foundation will handle your fund’s grant administration, tax reporting, and record keeping for a low annual administrative fee of 1%. This ensures that more of your charitable dollars go to the projects and issues close to your heart.

What can I give to the Community Foundation?

We accept cash, publicly-traded and privately held securities, immovable property, and other assets, such as artwork. These may be given as a bequest or during the donor’s lifetime.

Can I give anonymously?

Yes. The Community Foundation respects the donor’s privacy if he or she does not wish to be recognized.

How are funds invested? Can I tell the Foundation how and with whom to invest my funds?

The Community Foundation Board of Directors, with the advice of an outside investment consultant, selects investment managers and monitors their performance in the Foundation’s Investment Pool. If you have a relationship with an investment advisor, he or she can possibly serve as the manager for funds over $250,000.

Can you help me find effective charities to support?

Yes. Our professional staff is knowledgeable about area organizations and programs and the critical needs in our community. We are here to help you achieve your vision of a brighter community.

What if I don’t have a favorite charity or cause?

Unrestricted funds are a great way to meet the ever-changing needs of our community. Each year the Foundation staff and board review proposals, evaluate our community’s needs, and make grants to a variety of organizations through our competitive grant process. This flexibility allows donors to address current issues and also unforeseen needs that may be faced by future generations.