Community Foundation FAQs

A tried and true way of giving back to the community for more than 100 years.

Common Questions

Here are the answers to the four most common questions people have about community foundations:

What is a community foundation?

Community foundations are tax-exempt, publicly supported, nonprofit organizations devoted to improving the communities they serve in perpetuity – forever – by working closely with charitably minded individuals, families, businesses and nonprofits. Community foundations help local philanthropists of all income levels create or support permanent charitable funds that issue grants to the causes and organizations they love.  Community foundations are especially good vehicles for carrying out donors' legacy giving plans. 

The first community foundation was established in Cleveland, Ohio, in 1914. Now, there are more than 800 community foundations all across the country. We are the largest community foundation in Connecticut in terms of geographic area served – covering nearly one-third of the state.

How do community foundations differ from private foundations?

The IRS categorizes community foundations as public charities since they receive support from a wide and varied group of donors.  This designation gives them important tax advantages over private foundations which often have just one or a few donors. In addition, community foundations are allowed by law to treat all the funds under their care as part of a single corporation, which provides administrative and investment advantages over private foundations. To learn more, see Alternatives to Private Foundations

How do community foundations differ from nonprofit organizations?

Most nonprofit organizations have a specific charitable priority that they focus on within their defined mission. Community foundations, by contrast, typically have a broad range of philanthropic priorities that reflect the specific interests of the individuals, families, businesses and nonprofits that establish or support charitable funds with the foundation. Read more about Our Work and Our Priorities

What can a community foundation do for me?

The Community Foundation of Eastern Connecticut offers flexible and nimble ways for you to make a lasting difference in your community. We can help you make a meaningful charitable impact on the issues and nonprofits you are passionate about – whatever your financial means.  And, we offer you the opportunity to meet, learn and give together with other people who care deeply about our region. Read more about Why Donors Choose Us

Contact

P: 860.442.3572
P: 1.877.442.3572 (toll free)
F: 860.442.0584 (fax)
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Location

68 Federal Street
New London, CT 06320
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