Creating your Legacy is Easy


The Catholic Foundation offers several customized ways that you or your family can participate:

Donor Advised Funds and Other Fund Options

Grantmaking from Donor Advised Funds

While donors who have established advised and designated funds with The Catholic Foundation have legally ceded control of their contributions to the Foundation (in accordance with the IRS regulations governing public charities), Catholic Foundation donors are encouraged to advise the Foundation about their charitable distribution preferences at any time.

Our initial conversations will focus on your personal philanthropic goals and how you hope to use your charitable fund to effect that vision. In this ongoing philanthropic partnership, communication plays an essential role, with the Foundation informing you about unique charitable opportunities, and you, the donor, informing the Foundation about grants you’d like to see made from your fund. Such requests must be made in writing, or through the password-protected DonorLink. Once the Foundation has verified the recipient’s qualifications and the availability of funds, a grant can be approved and the funds distributed within approximately two weeks’ time.

The Philanthropy Fund

A donor contributes directly to The Catholic Foundation's unrestricted Philanthropy Fund, a permanent source of income for funding to meet both immediate and emerging community needs. The Foundation's Trustees determine where the gift will do the most good, both in the present and in the future.Gifts of all sizes are accepted; no minimum.

Additional gifts may be made at any time, in any amount.

Donor Advised Funds

A Donor Advised Fund at The Catholic Foundation provides the optimal flexibility for charitable giving. It is a philanthropic tool not unlike the private or family foundation, but with significant tax advantages and considerably less complexity because it exists in the context of a community foundation. Contributions to the fund can be made at any time, in any amount; and, similarly, distributions from the fund can be made at any time, in any amount. The Donor Advised Fund can be especially useful when your financial circumstances might benefit from a significant charitable tax deduction in a given year while you might wish to extend your gifts to various charities over several years. It is also a useful tool for engaging future generations in the philanthropic enterprise, as you can name a second generation of advisors to the fund.

  • Initial Gift minimum: $10,000.
  • Additional gifts may be made at any time, in any amount.
  • The fund may be recognized in the individual's or the family name.

Designated Funds

A Designated Fund allows you to narrow the focus of your charitable giving by specifying the particular charity you want to support – a school, a hospital, or a parish food pantry, for example. (The possibility that the entity might cease to provide services at the expected level over time, or even cease to exist, is addressed by The Catholic Foundation's ability to shift the benefits to another organization whose mission is closest to the original intended charity so that your charitable intent is honored for all time.)

  • Initial Gift minimum: $10,000.
  • Additional gifts may be made at any time, in any amount.
  • The fund may be named in your honor, or in the name of the recipient charity. It may also be administered anonymously.

Field of Interest Fund

The Field of Interest Fund identifies a specific need – children, the elderly, health care, education, housing, or the arts, for example – and asks The Catholic Foundation to make the most effective grants possible to meet that need.

  • Initial Gift minimum: $10,000.
  • Additional gifts may be made at any time, in any amount.
  • The fund may be given a name or, should you prefer, the fund may be listed anonymously.

Scholarship Funds

Scholarship funds are prime examples of the ease and efficiency afforded donors who invest their charitable dollars in a community foundation (such as The Catholic Foundation): once you give the funds and establish the terms of a scholarship (qualifying schools or students, for example), the Foundation takes on all management, reporting and distribution requirements, including the selection and monitoring of scholarship recipients, though current regulations allow for donors to have limited involvement in the selection process if they wish.

  • Initial Gift minimum: $10,000.
  • Additional gifts may be made at any time, in any amount.
  • The Scholarship Fund is generally named for the donor but may also be named to honor any person or institution of the donor's choosing.

Memorial Funds

A Memorial Fund established at The Catholic Foundation is a permanent, living memorial to a friend or family member and may be dedicated to a charitable interest reflected in his or her life.

  • Initial Gift minimum: $10,000.
  • Additional gifts may be made at any time, in any amount by the donor and by other individuals or groups.
  • The fund is generally named in honor of the deceased.

Support Organization

Support organizations are often established with a community foundation by individuals or families of considerable wealth as an alternative to private foundations. Such organizations enjoy a highly specialized tax status through a carefully-defined legal relationship with The Catholic Foundation which is reflected in the composition of an independent board of directors representing both the donor's family and The Catholic Foundation, with The Catholic Foundation selecting the majority.

Initial gift: Usually several million dollars.

A support organization may be named for the donor or the donor's family and will most often be known as "The Jones Family Foundation of The Catholic Foundation." Anonymity can also be accommodated.