In the Community
Community ImpactNovember 25, 2013
The Community Foundation of the Lowcountry is a community unto itself. It is a diverse community of individuals and families, businesses and organizations, young and old. It is a community of folks sharing their stories and passions and hopes and dreams with one another. Those who make up the Community Foundation live, learn, play and work and in many different ways. And yet, though it is comprised of many, it is a community that is interconnected, sharing a common goal to live generously and make a difference. And it is a growing community, where there is room for more and all are welcome.
Community foundations are unique in our ability to make an impact in so many diverse areas of community need. From arts and culture, to education, the environment and health and human services, we can address issues related to all aspects of our community’s health and well-being. Our donors, with gifts large and small, help us to collectively continue to improve our communities...today and tomorrow.
With this ability to move money comes great responsibility to our donors and to our community. We persistently gather information about the most pressing local needs, and we study the many local organizations and programs working to enhance our communities. What organizations and programs are making the most difference? From where do the most exciting new ideas come? Armed with this knowledge, we make grants and direct resources to the most appropriate areas. We stay alert to emerging issues and foster both giving and volunteerism in our community.
We have the flexibility to:
• Support high-impact opportunities...those that will make the greatest difference in our communities
• Serve as a catalyst for bringing organizations into existence as new needs arise
• Re-direct funds as appropriate if and when our communities' needs change
In our annual report, to be published in December is a snapshot of our activity during our fiscal year which ended June 30, 2013. You will see year-end combined assets at more than $63 million (as of October 30 this has grown to $65 million), grants and scholarships at $6.9 million for the year, total grants since inception at more than $50 million (we just hit this milestone!), and charitable funds topping more than 260. That is a lot of impact in 19 short years! But the numbers reflect so much more. They reflect the passion of a couple with no children who saw the immense benefit of higher education for young people and established a scholarship fund. They include the collective giving and giving back from women in Beaufort and Hampton Counties who study their own communities and offer assistance. They show the strength and confidence of a young nonprofit in its future through the establishment of an endowment fund. They reveal businesses that know that the words “corporate social responsibility” are much more than buzz-words or a simple marketing strategy. They reflect the level-headed thinking and strength of a board that had to make hard decisions to lead through historically bleak financial times and prosper as a result.
In the pages of our annual report, we shine a spotlight on just a few of the interesting stories that make up the Community Foundation’s “community.” You will notice some of the organizations that anchor and stabilize our area. You may recognize them as your friends, colleagues or neighbors. We know them all as connectors, community change-makers and superheroes.
As I said earlier, there is room for more to continue this important work and live generously.