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Bibliography Database
Bibliography Database
Research & Resources > Community Foundations

Community Foundations


. What is a Community Foundation?

Among the things that set most community foundations apart from other foundations is their status as independent institutions supported by funds from many donors which are used to address local needs. Furthermore, community foundations usually seek to build endowed funds which will make funds available in perpetuity to address changing community needs...

. Association of Community Foundations in Bulgaria

The Association of Community Foundations in Bulgaria (ACFB) was created in 2005 to develop the expansion of philanthropy throughout Bulgaria. Member community foundations support civil society growth and raise funds for initiatives to respond to local needs...

. Association of Slovak Community Foundations

The Association of Slovak Community Foundation (AKNS) was founded to foster development and interconnectedness among Slovak community foundations and aid in connecting donors and grant-making institutions. Founded in 2003 AKNS currently has 9 active membership institutions. The Association offers support and consultancy for community foundation development and advancement...

. Australian Community Philanthropy

Australian Communities Foundation offers individuals, families, groups, corporations and not-for-profit organisations an easy and satisfying way of giving something of real value back to the community that they care about.   Donors establish philanthropic funds under Australian Communities Foundation’s legal structure and all donations are pooled and invested. The income generated from this investment is used over time to support charitable projects and organisations and to help build healthy resilient communities...


. The Balancing Act by Dorothy Reynolds

The Balancing Act consists of 3 pamphlets written by Dorothy Reynolds, a consultant to the C.S. Mott Foundation. The publications investigate the core functions of community foundations (institutions that gather local resources to meet local needs under the direction of local leadership). Each title in the series covers a different topic. The community foundation as: 1) a grant maker, 2) a vehicle for local philanthropy and 3) a community leader. Originally published in English, The Balancing Act has been translated into three additional languages, including Portuguese...

. League of California Community Foundations
The League of California Community Foundations (LCCF) was founded in 1994 as a network association for community foundations within the state of California. The aim of the LCCF is to build and strengthen California’s communities by fostering cooperation and collaboration among community foundations across the state. The LCCF encourages the twenty four registered member foundations to promote private philanthropy and private giving for the public good and to support local nonprofit organizations aiding in the improvement of health and human services, education, the environment, economic development, the arts and other fields of interest...

. Charles Stewart Mott Foundation

The Charles Stewart Mott Foundation is a private, grant making foundation established in 1923 to support efforts that promote a just, equitable and sustainable society. The Foundation has a long commitment to developing and strengthening the community foundation field. For three decades, the Mott Foundation has provided more than $125 million dollars to community foundation across the globe...

. Community Foundation Atlas Project

The Community Foundaton Alas is designed to help build connections among community foundations that may not be aware of counterparts abroad.  The objective is to facilitate wider adoption of best practices and high-impact collaborations aimed at addressing tough problems that span geographical boundaries.  The Atlas, which is hosted by Foundation Center, was also created to demonstrate to a variety of worldwide audiences the significant contributions made by community foundations to the places in which these audiences live and work.


. Community Foundation Network (U.K.)

The Community Foundation Network (CFN) of the United Kingdom is a national association for UK community foundations. CFN connects national foundations with each other and represents the promotion of foundations on the domestic and international level. Through the network, CFN administer s funding opportunities and grant-making on behalf of members, promotes growth and sustainability services, and provides direct technical assistance to foundations across the United Kingdom...

. Community Foundation of Canada

Community Foundations of Canada (CFC) was established in 1992 as a national membership organization. With over 171 members, CFC connects and supports the growth of local community foundations by including them in an emerging national network and encouraging them to build stronger philanthropic communities. CFC advocates for membership foundations to work toward collaborative relationships, visionary leadership, and open and accountable practices that reflect a high standard of performance...

. Community Foundations of Florida

The Community Foundation of Florida (CFF) is a state-based association that represents more than twenty community foundations in the state of Florida in order to promote philanthropy locally.  CFF aids Floridian donors in local communities to make a positive impact, and connects potential donors with corresponding community foundations. CFF is an active member of the Florida Philanthropic Network, a statewide association for grant makers wanting to improve philanthropy and effective giving in Florida...

. Community Foundation Partnership (Russia)

The Community Foundation Partnership (CFP) operating in Russia, centers its mission on building a civil society that heightens the local quality of life by developing and promoting social stability. The Partnership was established to aid in the formation of a mutually supportive climate for community foundations and to promote community foundation technological advancements. CFP represents a unified coalition of community foundations for local progress and for international donors...

. Community Foundations of New Zealand


. Comunalia (Alianza de Fundaciones Comunitarias de México/Mexico’s Community Foundations Network)

Founded in 2011, Comunalia is a network of Mexican community foundations. Its main purpose is to strengthen and give visibility to the work of its members, increasing their impact and therefore contributing to a sustainable, equitable and participatory development in Mexico. The intention is to stimulate the replication of the community foundation model in the country and build partnerships with other actors (government, academia, civil society, etc.).


. Council of Michigan Foundations

The Council of Michigan Foundation is nonprofit membership association of more than 350 grantmaking organizations. The Council aims to strengthen, promote, and increase philanthropy in Michigan. The largest US regional association of grantmakers, CMF serves family, cooperate, independent, public, and community foundations. CMF's goals include: advocating for legislation conducive to philanthropic endeavors; educating foundation staff about effective practices, connecting Michigan's grantmakers and grant seekers; and promoting public understanding of the role and importance of philanthropy...

. Council on Foundations

Council on Foundations (COF) is a national nonprofit membership association. It p provides tools and services to its members, which include community foundations, corporate grant makers, family foundations and global philanthropy. With a membership of more than two thousand grant making foundations, COF provides leadership expertise, legal services and networking opportunities for participating members and the general public...

. Czech Association of Community Foundations

The Czech Association of Community Foundations (CACF) was developed to support the expansion, cooperation, intercommunication, and dissemination of the community foundation model throughout the Czech Republic.  By promoting local community foundations, the Association hopes to build awareness within the public and among the national and international donor communities. The CACF actively lends support in the development process of new community foundations and works with current members to take unified action...

. Global Fund for Community Foundations

The Global Fund for Community Foundations was established in 2006 as a pilot project with support from the World Bank, The Ford and Charles Stewart Mott Foundations and WINGS (Worldwide Initiatives for Grantmaker Support). The Global Fund encourages and assists community foundation development in transitioning and developing countries. By giving small grants to community foundations and local philanthropic organizations, the Global Fund supports local grant makers in their effectiveness and development. In 2009, GFCF incorporated as an independent entity; it seeks to facilitate networks that will support emergent community foundations around the globe...

. The Global Fund for Women
The Global Fund for Women, established in 1987 as a public charity, was founded to strengthen and support women’s rights groups and movements across the globe with grants and monetary support. The Global Fund is an international network for women and men based on the philosophies of equality and social justice to serve a global community of women. Committed to empowering women; the Global Fund seeks to end gender based violence, increase access to education, expand civil and political participation, and ensure environmental and economic justice by providing flexible grant support to community foundations that encompass the Global Fund’s vision and goals...

. Global Studies, Center on Philanthropy and Civil Society

Since 1989 the Center has offered a professional development International Fellows Program (IFP). The IFP, which has trained over 162 research/practitioners from more than 57 countries, has produced a series of studies on global community philanthropy, corporate social responsibility and diaspora giving. A number of these studies, as they explore how to create a culture of giving, may be of particular interest to U.S. practitioners...


. Federation of Polish Community Foundations

The Federation of Polish Community Foundations (FFL) is working to promote the community foundation model and to support the activities of member organizations. In 2008, FFL incorporated for the purpose of promoting philanthropy locally and implementing strategies that support the growth of community foundations in Poland...

. South Africa Community Foundations Association/SACOFA
The South Africa Community Foundations Association is a membership association serving grant makers and serves as a network for community foundations in Sub-Saharan and southern Africa. The South African Association provides assistance, support, and guidance in the development and growth of local community foundations and brings together grant makers with private and public sector organizations...

A growing body of research by Center on Philanthropy and Civil Society International Fellows on community foundations (and community philanthropy) around the globe.


Community Philanthropy:  The missing link between local communities and international development

Anna Paula Borges Pinho, Emerging Leader, International Fellows Program ~ 2014

[Abstract] [Full text]

Partnering with Local Government:  Accelerating the Achievement of Community Foundation Sustainability

Mark Bentley, Senior Fellow, International Fellows Program ~ 2012

[Abstract] [Full text]

Australian Community Foundations as Community Voice:  Influencing a more locally responsive and effective allocation of resources

Emily Fuller, Senior Fellow, International Fellows Program ~ 2014

[Abstract & full text]

Emily Fuller presents insights and case studies fom her research on community foundations.


The Value of Giving Circles in the Evolution of Community Philanthropy: How community-based philanthropy can be strengthened by forging a bond between community foundations and Black giving circles in the United States.

Akira Barclay, Emerging Leader, International Fellows Program ~ 2012

[Abstract] [Full text]

Resilience Rainbow: What Role Can Community Foundations Play in Increasing Community Resilience

Joanna Bevan, Emerging Leader, International Fellows Program ~ 2013

[Abstract] [Full text]

The Challenge of Sustainability:  How German Community Foundations Can Strengthen Their Financial and Organizational Stability

Bernadette Hellmann, Emerging Leader, International Fellows Program ~ 2010

[Abstract] [Full text]



. Transatlantic Community Foundation Network/TCFN

The Transatlantic Community Foundation Network was an international network of North American and European community foundations.  The network sponsored meetings where membes could share intellectual and experiential resources in order to identify and share good practices to encourage and strengthen community-based philanthropy.  The network was disconitnued in 2011, however the toolkits and resources have been archived by the Global Fund for Community Foundations and are available on its Web site.


.UK Community Foundations/UKCF

The UK Community Foundations is the umbrella organisation for all community foundations providing philanthropic advice to clients and delivering UK-wide grant-making programmes. UKCF provides advice and support to its member foundations and has one simple objective: to help build thriving communities.


.Ukrainian Philanthropists Forum

The Ukrainian Philanthropists Forum is the only professional association of Ukrainian and international foundations, donor organizations and other charity institutions, which directs its activities at the development of organized philanthropy as a significant instrument of civil society in Ukraine.


.WINGS [Worldwide Initiative for Grantmaker Support] Community Foundations

WINGS, Worldwide Initiative for Grantmaker Support, were founded in 2000 as a global network for more than 140 membership organization and institutions supporting and developing the culture of giving and philanthropy around the world. WINGS represents philanthropy internationally and offers professional and education development for participants. WINGS-Community Foundations (WINGS-CF), is a constituent group that promotes organizations working to develop and aid community foundations in their efforts to build equitable and just societies.  The WINGS and WINGS-CF webpages offer a variety of resources of interest to grantmakers globally...