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Community Foundation 2019 Impact Statement

Dear Friends of the Foundation,
Happy New Year! While the calendar tells us we are already in the third week of the first month of 2020, at the Community Foundation, we have been focused on wrapping up what was a very busy year-end. In the last two weeks of 2019 alone, we received more than 180 donations!

All told, 2019 was a banner year for our Community Foundation. Donors entrusted us with $3.5 million in contributions and we awarded more than $3.3 million in grants and scholarships.

We finished the year with $68 million in assets – resources from which we can continue to grant to support our communities this year, next year, and for generations to come.

As I think about those numbers and dig a little deeper, I am struck by a few things:

  • We received 1,122 gifts from 883 donors, ranging from $10 to $1 million. We witness every day that gifts of all sizes make a meaningful difference in supporting our mission.
  • Of the total awarded in 2019, $3 million were grants, including 728 awards to support 311 nonprofits. We are uniquely positioned to support all areas of our community – arts and culture, education and scholarships, environment, health and human services, and youth.
  • In addition to grants, we awarded $272,428 in scholarships – which included 230 awards to 194 students. These awards are an important resource for young people pursuing post-secondary opportunities.
  • Our Youth Advisory Councils in each of our five-counties collectively awarded $72,500 to support youth programs and services. Youth and young adults programs are areas we know are critical opportunities for impact in our region.

While the numbers are easy to share and fun to celebrate, I am most proud of, and inspired by, the work and the impact that these numbers help make possible. Among the many examples of this, a few highlights include:

  • Support for Generations Ahead that has allowed that program to expand its support of teen parents and their children, which we know has big impact for these families both now and for years to come.
  • Growing our community leadership activities, including convening and leading a community development coalition and scorecard; leveraging resources and funding through our Water First project; and catalyzing coordinated and comprehensive early childhood efforts in Central Lake.
  • Supporting Bellaire High School students in their project to make baby blankets for the Antrim County Baby Pantry, funding for Norte to launch in Kalkaska County, and support of several local library projects that are creating new and improved community spaces.
  • Providing a small grant to the Village of Kalkaska to complete a CDBG Income Survey, the first step of a process that provided opportunity for the Village to secure $3M+ in state funding for their community gathering space project.

As we officially close the books on 2019 we are grateful for the many friends and neighbors who continue to give generously and entrust the Community Foundation as a partner for lasting impact. We are also excited about the year to come and the opportunities we see to grow the ways in which we partner with donors, support our nonprofits, and collaboratively lead in our region – and together create and support healthy, resilient, thriving communities.

Warm Regards,

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