Community Foundations

Community foundations are grantmaking public charities that are dedicated to improving the lives of people in a defined local geographic area. They bring together the financial resources of individuals, families, and businesses to support effective nonprofits in their communities. Community foundations vary widely in asset size, ranging from less than $100,000 to more than $1.7 billion.

Community foundations play a key role in identifying and solving community problems. In 2011, they gave an estimated $4.3 billion to a variety of nonprofit activities in fields that included the arts and education, health and human services, the environment, and disaster relief. The Community Foundations National Standards Board confirms operational excellence in six key areas—mission, structure, and governance; resource development; stewardship and accountability; grantmaking and community leadership; donor relations; and communications. Foundations that comply with these standards can display the official National Standards Seal. Right now nearly 500 community foundations have earned the seal.

More than 750 community foundations operate in urban and rural areas in every state in the United States; currently, more than 570 belong to the Council on Foundations. The community foundation model also has taken hold around the world. According to the 2010 Community Foundation Global Status Report, there are 1,680 community foundations in 51 countries. Forty-six percent exist outside of the United States. You can use our Community Foundation Locator to view a list of community foundations in the United States.

Below is everything on our site for community foundations. We highly recommend that you use the navigation or our search feature to find what you're looking for on our site.

Does your organization provide parking/transportation benefits to employees or do you already file the Form 990-T? If you answered yes to either of those questions, your organization will owe taxes for 2018 and the filing process is going to be different than it was last year. The Council’s government relations and legal experts are teaming up to provide a briefing on:

Annually Celebrated November 12-18: Engage with Your Local Community Today!

KJEAs I hope you saw yesterday, we have some exciting news here at the Council! We're happy to announce that our next president and CEO will be Kathleen P. Enright.

The Council on Foundations today announced that Stephen Heintz, President of the Rockefeller Brothers Fund, will receive the Distinguished Service Award at its upcoming Awards Ceremony in Washington, DC. The Award is philanthropy’s highest honor and celebrates a visionary leader who embodies the inspirational qualities that define excellence in philanthropy—commitment, courage, entrepreneurship, and impact.

Disaster Overview

Hurricane Michael made landfall on the Florida Panhandle as a Category 4 storm that resulted in dangerous storm surge flooding, destructive winds of more than 150 mph and flooding rainfall. As it moved inland, Michael also brought heavy rain and strong winds to other parts of the southeastern United States. Hurricane Michael was the strongest storm to make landfall in the continental U.S. since Hurricane Andrew in 1992. The impacts of the storm has reached