A new foundation was recently announced. The Harrisburg Community Foundation (HCF) has been created to enhance the quality of life in the fast-growing community. The mission statement states, “We commit to build, inspire and engage our community to connect and grow through philanthropy and volunteerism.”
A community foundation is a tax-exempt, non-profit, publicly supported philanthropic organization with the long-term goal of building permanent funds, for the broad-based public benefit of the residents in a given area. The common mission of every community foundation is to enhance the quality of life in the local area. Community foundations carry out this very broad mission by building permanent endowment funds and using a portion of the annual income to support a variety of special projects, grants, scholarships as well as other local nonprofit organizations.
The HCF already has an endowment established with the South Dakota Community Foundation. The board plans to use the dividends from this endowment to support several different projects annually such as awarding community grants to Harrisburg organizations and scholarships to high school seniors, in addition to leading the fundraising efforts for larger community projects.
HCF President, Collin McKenzie said, "This is a season of thanksgiving and we are grateful to those who have supported our endeavors already. We look forward to continuing those partnerships as we further our mission to enrich lives in the Harrisburg community.”
The Foundation is an evolution of the Harrisburg Days Foundation that has organized the Harrisburg Days celebration for the past nine years. Beginning in 2018, the Harrisburg Days event planning will now be led by the City of Harrisburg. McKenzie said, “We are excited to have the Harrisburg Days event organized by city staff now because it allows the volunteer HCF board to focus our efforts on other community-wide initiatives.”
The original goal of the Harrisburg Days event was to bring community members together while raising money to create a central community park that would include a swimming pool. That goal continues for the Foundation in its new role. The HCF plans to advance fundraising efforts now through grants, individual and corporate gifts to complete the vision of the project.
Development of the park, located north of Liberty Elementary School, is underway. This summer, Devitt Pond was added along with a lighted, paved trail for walking, running and biking. The City of Harrisburg and the HCF, as well as the Harrisburg Baseball Association, partner on the park project.
Other members of the Harrisburg Community Foundation board are: Ryan Berg, Tami Harms, Tom Norstrom, Josh Sisson and John Sutton. The Foundation is looking for more people who have a passion for the mission to join the board.
More information regarding the HCF can be found at HarrisburgCF.org. or by contacting Foundation Coordinator Angie Kuiper via the Contact Us link.