A community foundation is a nonprofit, 501(c)(3) public charity created by and for the people in a certain geographical area. It is used as a vehicle for giving, designed to pool donations into a coordinated investment. In addition, a community foundation is a grant-maker dedicated primarily to the social improvement of a given place.
Community foundations are charitable trusts that support local community causes. Their role is to manage donor funds and build endowments as well as make grants to charities and community groups, linking local donors with local needs. They help donors express their long-term interests in a geographic area or social issue.
What makes community foundations different?
- Community foundations identify local needs and mobilize local resources.
- Community foundations can meet all areas of community needs – arts and culture, education, environment, health, community development, youth, veterans, and the elderly.
- Community foundations support cutting-edge programs, help create new organizations, and meet new and emerging needs.