Community Foundation of North Okanagan board members Calvin Hoy, George Agar and Janice Mori stand beside the refrigerated food truck the Foundation partnered on to share perishable foods throughout the Valley. The Foundation pools donors’ charitable gifts to create endowment funds, then uses the investment income to make grants to local organizations.

A charity for all charities: Helping donors make a lasting difference

Community Foundation works for the North Okanagan

Do you dream of making a lasting difference for the North Okanagan? Maybe you have a special cause that’s close to your heart?

The Community Foundation of the North Okanagan is in a unique position to help.

The registered, charitable foundation pools donors’ charitable gifts to create endowment funds, then uses the investment income to make grants; the more funds in the endowment, the more investment income there is to distribute. In fact, the Foundation today holds more than $16 million in assets and works with hundreds of caring donors and high-impact community organizations!

A charity for all charities, “we are one-stop giving,” explains executive director Leanne Hammond. “We’re small – donors appreciate that – we’re responsive and we’re extremely efficient.”

Like the 191 other community foundations across Canada, the Foundation also provides leadership, monitoring the region’s quality of life and convening people, ideas and resources to build stronger, more resilient communities.

One key to the Foundation’s success is its unparalleled flexibility. Working with individuals, businesses, organizations or families, donors have countless ways to fulfill their charitable goals and make a lasting difference. Here’s a look at how:

All levels of donations are welcome. While large donations sometimes make headlines, many smaller donations come together in the endowment funds the Foundation works with.

You can direct your funds. If you’re passionate about children, sport, environmental issues or any number of other areas, the Foundation can ensure your donation is directed to where it can do the most good.

Donating – or setting up a fund – is easy. “People will ask how long it takes to sent up a fund, but it’s easy – we can do it in a day,” Hammond says. “We also help donors make their gift in the most tax-efficient way possible.”

Securities are also welcome. Beyond direct cash donations, securities are also simple to donate, with the entire process completed electronically. For charities without a broker, the Foundation can also accept a securities gift on their behalf, then send it along as a flow-through gift.

“We serve charities as well as donors – we’re the connection between the two,” Hammond says.

There’s no pressure to donate. “We’re very respectful and do things on the donor’s schedule. We can even start the process now, but have the bulk of your donation come later as a bequest from your will or life insurance.” “If you’re unsure what direction you’d like your philanthropy to take, you can even park your funds while you decide,” Hammond notes.

And for donors who prefer to remain anonymous with the charities they fund, the Foundation can make that happen too.

***

Since 1975, the Community Foundation of the North Okanagan has connected philanthropy with community needs and opportunities to make the region the best place to live, work, learn and grow. Governed by a diverse volunteer board of community leaders, high standards of accountability, transparency and stewardship are reflected in all aspects of their work. Learn more at cfno.org

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Janice Mori, past board chair of the Community Foundation of the North Okanagan, cuddles with her granddaughter. The Foundation works with donors, charities, businesses and organizations across the region to build stronger, more resilient local communities.

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