What is a Community Foundation

A Community Foundation helps to build and strengthen communities and bring together people and organizations that want to make a difference. They are tax-exempt public charities that encourage philanthropy and are dedicated to improving the quality of life in the areas they serve.

Individuals, families, businesses, and organizations work with community foundations to create permanent charitable funds that help meet the challenges of changing times. The foundation invests and administers these funds.


Community foundations are the fastest growing sector of philanthropy in the United States today. A community foundation is organized to channel gifts from individual and corporate donors to a variety of charitable organizations in the local community. It is a publicly supported philanthropic institution governed by a local board of private citizens.

Five important features of a community foundation:
  1. It acts as a grantmaking entity, giving grants to support local charitable projects.
  2. Its mission is broadly defined. (e.g. "to improve the quality of life in a community")
  3. It serves geographically defined urban communities (e.g. a city, county or region)
  4. It is supported by a broad range of private as well as public donors and seeks charitable contributions primarily from inside the community.
  5. It builds capital endowment, which is an important element of its sustainability.
Hot off the press!
Air Supported Dome

On January 10th the long awaited air supported, seasonal dome on the campus of MSU opened to the public. The dome, which covers the field at Herb Parker Stadium, will remain up until the end of April. For more information and to reserve the

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