How can I make my philanthropy more meaningful and strategic?
Greater Toledo Community Foundation wants philanthropy to be more than just writing a check. We want to show you what your dreams can do. By assisting fundholders in developing charitable plans that match their values and goals, the Foundation ensures that donors transform philanthropic impulse to community results. GTCF’s Philanthropic Services staff is available to discuss your dreams and introduce you to causes or nonprofits that meet your charitable goals. The Philanthropic Services team also hosts an education series on topics of interest to the Foundation’s fundholders.
What kind of assets can I gift?
The Foundation offers a variety of ways for you to make donations to reach your philanthropic goals. Corporations and businesses are limited to gifts of cash, securities, closely-held stock, limited partnership interests and real estate. Individuals and families have even more options, including gifts of cash, securities, closely-held stock, limited partnership interests, bequests, life insurance policy, retirement fund accounts, real estate, tangible personal property, a charitable remainder trust or a charitable lead trust.
What type of funds are available for me to consider?
The Foundation offers a number of fund options for you, your family, businesses and nonprofit organizations. The funds are flexible and you decide how much or how little you want to be involved in making grants. Types of funds offered include a Community Fund, Donor Advised Fund, Field of Interest Fund, Designated Fund, Scholarship Fund, Supporting Organization or an Organization Endowment Fund.
How are administrative fees calculated and assessed?
The Greater Toledo Community Foundation administrative fee is calculated for each individual fund using the average market value of the past 20 quarters, or the number of quarters a fund has been in existence (up to 20 quarters). Bank/record keeping fees are based on the prior quarter’s market value. Both charges will appear on the quarterly donor report, which is sent to the original donor and/or his/her designee approximately four weeks after the close of the quarter.
Will I receive fund statements?
The Foundation issues quarterly donor reports for each fund. The reports are mailed approximately four weeks after the close of the quarter, and are available online to fund advisors for donor directed and donor advised funds. Donor reports keep you up-to-date on contributions made, growth (losses) to your fund from investment performance, and grants made from the fund. As we transition to our new donor software we will keep you apprised of any changes regarding how you will receive your donor report.
Who is eligible to receive grants from my fund and the Foundation?
Tax-exempt 501(c)(3) nonprofit organizations, religious congregations or government agencies. Foundation grants are made to both public and private tax-exempt organizations to support programs in the fields of education, social services, physical and mental health, neighborhood and urban affairs, natural resources and the arts.
How are grants made from funds?
Before a grant can be made, the Foundation assures that the grant you are recommending is going to a nonprofit organization in good standing. Our staff collects and reviews the nonprofit’s IRS reporting form (called a 990), its annual report, a list of the board of directors, its budget, and their letter of determination from the IRS. If the staff determines the organization is in good standing, the recommendation goes to our board of trustees to be approved. This approval remains in place as long as the organization remains up-to-date as we conduct our due diligence. If the staff discovers a problem with a nonprofit that you recommend a grant to, we will notify you immediately. You can recommend grants at any time from your fund.
Each grant check is accompanied by a cover letter telling the nonprofit that the grant is from the “XYZ Fund” of the Greater Toledo Community Foundation unless you request the grant to be anonymous.
What happens if the original purpose of a restricted or designated gift becomes unnecessary or impossible to fulfill?
If the original purpose of a restricted or designated gift becomes unnecessary, impractical or impossible to accomplish, the Grants & Distribution Committee of the Greater Toledo Community Foundation may, by unanimous vote, direct the use of those funds for such other purposes as it deems most appropriate at the time.
Can you help me find effective charities to support?
Yes. Our Program and Philanthropic Services staff are a valuable resource that is available to you. They can work with you to identify organizations involved in the causes you care about. Further, our Program and Philanthropic Services staff keep current records on most nonprofit organizations in northwest Ohio and southeast Michigan, and serve as a source of information on the changing needs of the region. National and international organizations may also be supported and reviewed through our network of community foundations around the globe.
Can my family be involved?
Yes. Philanthropy offers an opportunity to pass on the family’s philanthropic traditions and family values. Creating a donor advised fund with children as the successor advisors can be one of the most powerful and meaningful gifts a parent can make. The Philanthropic Services staff can work with you on the best ways to involve children and grandchildren in the joys of philanthropy through a fund at the Foundation.
What if I want to keep this private?
There is no better place. You may remain completely anonymous. We are not required to report you or your family’s name to the public or through any reports required by the IRS.
What can I name the fund?
The name is up to you. Many funds are named for the donor, the donor’s family, or to honor or memorialize someone special. By identifying yourself through your fund, you can be instrumental in influencing your peers to establish philanthropic goals. Or, you may remain anonymous. Many anonymous donors use a name that reflects their interests or something that is special to them. Every grant from the fund will carry this name.
How is a fund at Greater Toledo Community Foundation the same or different from creating a private foundation?
Greater Toledo Community Foundation is a public charity and therefore you receive maximum tax benefits when you make a contribution, whereas gifts made to a private foundation are more limited. Private foundations are exposed to excise taxes and various restrictions as to what they can and cannot hold in their investment pool. More significant though are the supportive services you receive with a fund at Greater Toledo Community Foundation – assistance with grantmaking, charitable planning, philanthropic education series, assistance establishing a family giving program – just to name a few.
Can I include Greater Toledo Community Foundation in my estate planning?
Absolutely, the Foundation encourages you to do so. A gift from your estate could be the largest commitment you ever make to philanthropy. Greater Toledo Community Foundation staff can work with your advisors to assure that your charitable goals are expressed through your estate plan. It is a wonderful way to leave a legacy. Click to review estate examples.
If you have additional questions about Greater Toledo Community Foundation processes or giving options, you may also want to consult the content covered in our Nonprofit and Advisor FAQs.