Types of Funds

There are many ways to give through the Community Foundation of Howard County (CFHoCo). We’re a trusted resource for donors and their professional advisors as they search for smart and efficient ways to give back to the community.

It is important to consider all the financial and tax implications of creating a fund. We are available to help you and your professional advisors create a plan that achieves your philanthropic, financial and estate planning goals, at no charge.

Here are some common ways you can choose to support our community through CFHoCo:

UNRESTRICTED GIFTS

Unrestricted funds provide the greatest flexibility in responding to Howard County’s changing needs. Donors place no restrictions on how such funds may be used by the Community Foundation of Howard County (CFHoCo) to address the community’s most pressing challenges. Income from unrestricted endowment funds is the primary source of funding for CFHoCo’s Community Grants program.

FIELD OF INTEREST FUNDS

You can target your gift to address needs in an important area of community life, such as arts, education, the environment, social services and more. You identify your personal interest area when making your gift; our board awards grants to community organizations and programs that are making a difference in the program area you select. Your gift stays flexible enough to meet community needs in your interest area-even as they change over time.

DONOR-ADVISED FUNDS

By creating a donor-advised fund, you’ll be able to make grants at any time to the nonprofit of your choice. Donor-advised funds are a popular and flexible tool for managing complex financial gifts and making thoughtful grants.  Grant awards are issued to charities in the name of the fund (or anonymously if you prefer). It’s a simple, powerful, and highly personal approach to giving – and a great way to involve your entire family in philanthropy.

DESIGNATED FUNDS

By establishing a designated fund, you can provide ongoing support the good work of one or more of your favorite nonprofit organizations-a senior center, museum, university or virtually any nonprofit charitable organization. Your gift provides the organization of your choice a sustainable source of income for years to come. Grants are distributed annually to the designated recipients.  If any of the designated organizations should cease to exist, the Community Foundation of Howard County will ensure that the fund continues the donor’s charitable objectives.

SCHOLARSHIPS AND AWARDS

Some donors honor or memorialize a loved one or a retiring employee by creating a scholarship or award program to help further the education of deserving students based on criteria established by the donor. The Community Foundation of Howard County provides the expertise to help you meet your personal goals and handles the administrative details.

Learn more about our scholarships program.

MEMORIAL FUNDS

When a loved one dies, you’re faced with a number of difficult decisions.  Deciding on the beneficiary of charitable gifts made in memory of your loved one doesn’t have to be one of them. That’s why the Community Foundation of Howard County (CFHoCo) offers Temporary Memorial Funds. These funds serve as a  tax-exempt repository for memorial gifts for a period of one year from the date the fund is started. CFHoCo will acknowledge gifts and provide gift receipts to donors for income tax purposes. Fund representatives will receive notification of gifts made to the fund, with names and addresses of donors, along with any notes of condolences sent by the donors.

GIVING CIRCLES

Giving circles enable friends and family members to pool their money to start and maintain a charitable fund. They are typically organized around a particular issue or area of interest, such as women’s issues, quality of life or the environment and are considered a high engagement form of philanthropy, because donors usually participate in collective decision making and educational activities. One example is the Women’s Giving Circle of Howard County, a fund started by a community of local women philanthropists who are strategically pooling their funds and leveraging their dollars to help women and girls in Howard County.

NONPROFIT AGENCY ENDOWMENTS

You don’t need to be an individual to create a fund at the Community Foundation of Howard County. Nonprofits can establish an endowment fund to take advantage of CFHoCo’s professional investment management services while building a perpetual source of funding and promoting sustainability for your nonprofit.

SUPPORTING ORGANIZATIONS

A tax-wise alternative to a private foundation, supporting organizations are individual 501(c)(3) public charities under Section 509(a)(3) of the tax code. Although they have their own tax ID number and donations receive the maximum level of tax deductions (as with a donor-advised fund), each supporting organization is covered under the Community Foundation of Howard County’s umbrella, and the supporting organization’s grants and activities must fulfill and support the charitable purposes of CFHoCo. The Community Foundation of Howard County handles all of the administrative oversight including the IRS-mandated tax returns and annual audits.

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