the power of collaboration
We believe philanthropy is for everyone.
Community is our middle name. The Community Foundation has over twenty years of experience guiding philanthropy to impactful community-based organizations working to strengthen our region. We invest in long term solutions to support critical and evolving needs of our diverse, thriving community.
In addition to grantmaking from donor-directed funds, the foundation supports and raises resources for ambitious initiatives aimed at addressing serious and demanding challenges in the region. These special initiatives are signature components that bring our mission to life. They are made possible when individuals like you join us to make a transformative impact in our community.
Together, we're delivering promising solutions for some of our community’s most pressing needs.
Lasting change is achieved when philanthropic investment is combined with smart strategies and meaningful community engagement. Our approach to community-wide impact includes grant funding, advocacy and leadership, deep partnerships and donor engagement.
For years, the foundation has been expanding its definition of a “philanthropic expert” to be more inclusive and better represent our community. We believe everyone can be a philanthropist. The very people who benefit from funding should determine the grantmaking priorities and decisions affecting their lives. Our definition now includes people with lived experience as experts on issues affecting them. They are the best positioned to understand their neighborhood’s needs, to gather its assets, and to spearhead change. From our Women and Girls Fund to our scholarship review to our Youth in Philanthropy program, this type of participatory grantmaking shares decision-making power about funding decisions to the very communities the foundation aims to serve.
Explore the ways the foundation is working to make our community a better place:
The Community Foundation recognizes that our community is increasingly more diverse and so are the needs and aspirations of the people we serve. We envision a thriving, equitable and connected region where people of all races, places and identities have full and equal access to opportunity, power and resources. As part of our commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion, the foundation has established a racial justice fund, assembled a council of community advisors and formed a designated board committee.
The Community Relief Fund is an essential community resource. It was designed to rapidly distribute grant funds where they can have the greatest impact during a disaster, and then to support our community as we recover and rebuild. When the significant impact of the coronavirus pandemic on our region became clear, foundation staff and board mobilized to activate the fund. We are grateful to every individual, business and organization rising to the challenge and meeting our community’s needs at this difficult time. Thank you for responding to the critical needs of our community and giving generously to the Community Relief Fund.
The Community Fund is one of the foundation’s essential tools to respond quickly and strategically to address critical needs in our region. Directed by the foundation’s Board of Governors, it was designed such that it can be re-targeted each year in response to the most promising opportunities for impact. When you give to this unrestricted fund, we are able to pool the collective generosity of all fund donors to amplify the impact of your gift. The Community Fund is a perfect example of the foundation’s ability to leverage donations from many donors to achieve maximum impact in our region.
Investing in women and girls is a powerful way to invest in our community. Through the Women and Girls Fund, we are able to focus the talent, ideas and financial resources of area women to meet the critical needs of women and girls in our community. The founding vision is a fund made up of 1,000 women, each willing to pledge $1,000. Our ultimate goal is to build a $1 million endowment that will become a permanent asset for future generations. We warmly welcome new Members to join in our work.
Youth in Philanthropy (YIP) is a signature program of the foundation. YIP teaches area teenagers the importance of giving and serving, encourages youth involvement in philanthropy, and provides ways for local young people to take action on issues important to them. Nearly 300 high school students from across the region have participated in YIP – demonstrating leadership, solving problems, studying proposals, managing budgets, working together and presenting their views to an audience of peers and adults.