A community foundation is an independent philanthropic organisation that enables local donors to contribute cash, trusts, bequests or real property to create permanent endowments that benefit a specific geographic area.
How are Community foundations funded?
A community foundation attracts tax deductible donations to its Public Fund and builds a capital base known as a corpus (a fund of money invested in perpetuity), to provide a permanent and growing source of funding. The income earned each year is returned to the community as annual grants to deductible gift recipients or other tax deductible entities. In addition, the community foundation through its governing charitable company or trust can support wider charitable purposes.
What can a Community foundation achieve?
Community foundations bring together a diverse range of stakeholders in rural and metropolitan communities to provide them with tools and resources to initiate key social, environmental and cultural activities.
Once established, the foundations grow in their communities and develop a character appropriate to the location. However, there are key characteristics common to all community foundations, such as:
Philanthropy Australia is committed to the growth and development of community foundations around Australia. We have a special Membership rate for community foundations in consideration of the early stages of development at which most community foundations in Australia currently operate.
As the peak body for the philanthropic sector, we are actively involved in shaping the development and direction of government policy and legislation relating to the sector.
In conversation with Nicole Richards at the Philanthropy Meets Parliament Summit, Daniel Lee shared his insights on topics including the role of philanthropy as a driver of systems change which addresses root causes of social challenges, the relationship between philanthropy and government and what the new political environment in the United States means for philanthropy.