What is a Community Foundation

Community foundations build endowment, award grants, and connect the community by providing leadership services which can convene agencies and coordinate resources to create positive change.

A community foundation is a 501c3 tax-exempt charitable organization that provides support, primarily for the needs of the geographic community or region where it is based. This support comes from a permanent collection endowed funds that it maintains, managers, and administers for the long-term benefit of a defined geographic area.

Community foundations seek support from the general public, and they also provide grants.

Community Foundations can:

Provide tools and resources which help individuals, families, businesses, and nonprofit agencies achieve their charitable and financial goals.

  • Help donors create charitable funds to support the issues and groups they care about most.
  •  Accept a variety of assets and facilitate complicated giving strategies.

A community foundation is committed to the principles of equality and diversity, inclusiveness, and public accountability.

For additional information please visit the Michigan Community Foundations website.

The National Standards Seal by our name indicates official confirmation from the Council on Foundations that we have met the most rigorous standards in philanthropy. It affirms our commitment to financial security, transparency and accountability. It says our grantmaking includes an open, competitive process designed to address the changing needs of our community. The National Standards Seal also confirms our history of honoring donors’ wishes.