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, and other local nonprofit organizations.
The IRS recognizes community foundations as public charities, in part because they receive support from the general public and their boards broadly represent the areas served.
The community foundation convenes groups including donors, nonprofit leaders, and elected officials to work together on community problem-solving. Community foundations foster greater giving and volunteering in our communities.
They also have a long tradition of helping bring about thoughtful, effective community growth and change.