Donor resources and frequently asked questions

Our resources are at your disposal


We offer a range of services and resources to help donors learn about community issues and make the greatest possible impact with their charitable giving.

In order to help donors be effective and efficient, we offer you:

  • Personal service: We're available to speak with you about any aspect of your philanthropic giving. We'll also provide you with information about your favorite causes and nonprofits.

  • Educational and networking events: Throughout the year, the Foundation hosts special events including a reception for Legacy Society members and an annual reception. We can also arrange site visits for our donors so you can see firsthand the charitable work being done in the community.

  • Funding opportunities: We offer donors opportunities to leverage their giving through our annual competitive grant awards process and to learn about critical needs in the community.

  • Donor's Bill of Rights: Philanthropy is based on voluntary action for the common good. It is a tradition of giving and sharing that is primary to the quality of life. To assure that philanthropy merits the respect and trust of the general public, and that donors and prospective donors can have full confidence in the not-for-profit organizations and causes they are asked to support, we declare that all donors have certain rights regarding privacy, transparency and professionalism. Read more about our Donor's Bill of Rights.

  • Our credentials: We are:
    • A certified Michigan community foundation
    • A Michigan nonprofit corporation
    • A publicly supported tax-exempt organization classified under Section 501(c)(3) & 509(a)(1) and 170(b)(1)(A)(vi) of the Internal Revenue Code
    • A member of the Council of Michigan Foundations
    • Confirmed in Compliance with the National Standards for U.S. Community Foundations
    • A member of the Association of Fundraising Professionals, the American Council of Gift Annuities, the National Committee on Planned Giving and the Michigan Nonprofit Association

  • Financial information: An independent audit of the Community Foundation is conducted annually. Hard copies of the following documents are available upon request, and are also available for download: Form 990, Form 990-T (if applicable), application for tax-exempt status (Form 1023), IRS Determination Letter, Audited Financial Statements. Excluding specific donor and personnel information, the financial records of the Community Foundation are public. See more of the Community Foundation's financial information.

  • Foundation news: Our latest press releases can be found in our Media Center.

Questions you might have about us:

What is the Community Foundation?

The Community Foundation is passionate about creating vibrant, thriving communities in Michigan's capital region. We work with donors to meet their charitable goals, support area nonprofits with grants and coaching, and lead innovative projects that drive community growth. We're also known as the Capital Region Community Foundation and are a tax-exempt public charity that serves the charitable needs and enhances the quality of life for people in Ingham, Clinton, and Eaton counties.

What is your mission?

To serve the charitable needs and enhance the quality of life in Ingham, Eaton, and Clinton counties.

How does the Community Foundation differ from a private foundation?

We derive our assets from many donors rather than one, have broad charitable purposes, and a demographically diverse, non-compensated board of trustees. Because we are a public charity, we receive more favorable tax treatment, do not pay excise taxes on income, and have more flexibility in our operating ability.

Do you compete with other nonprofits?

No, we are a resource for and supporter of them. We hold many of their endowment funds, work to develop their assets, and grant to their organizations.

What types of funds do you offer?

We have a variety of funds that enable you to start giving immediately or giving strategies that will make gifts to your fund later. You may also choose to do both.

How many funds does the foundation manage?

We manage more than 450 funds and oversee more than $104 million in assets.

I'm ready to give now. What are my options?

There are several fund types from which to choose. You may donate to an established fund or establish your own named fund with a donation of $10,000 or more, depending on the type of fund. Options include: named, undesignated funds; field-of-interest funds; donor-advised funds; named scholarship funds designated funds and agency endowment funds. We accept gifts of cash, securities and real estate.

I'm thinking of giving later. What are my choices?

Bequests, retirement assets, charitable remainder trusts, charitable gift annuities, charitable lead trusts and life insurance are all welcome gifts.

Is there a tax benefit to working with you?

Yes, your contributions qualify for the maximum allowable deduction for income, gift, and estate tax purposes since we are a 501(c)(3) public charity as classified by the Internal Revenue Service.

What other advantages are there to setting up a fund?

We manage all the administrative details, while offering you personal service, educational and networking events and notice of funding opportunities that align with your giving preferences. We'll also keep you abreast of emergency and critical needs in the community.

Are the details of my gift made public?

Not if you don't want them to be. While we would love to share your story on our website, multimedia and other distribution channels, we respect and honor our donors' wishes regarding publicity or anonymity.

What's the Legacy Society all about?

Members of the Legacy Society have planned a future gift through a bequest, trust, life insurance, charitable gift annuity or charitable remainder or lead trust. We established the Legacy Society to honor those people now for what they're doing for our future.

Will you work with my professional advisor?

Yes. We have great relationships with a host of local professional advisors and provide them with all the resources they need to get the process started.

What is YAC?

Our Youth Action Committee is a youth advisory committee to the Board of Trustees. These mid-Michigan teens represent approximately 16 school districts in the tri-county area and are committed to community service, philanthropy, and volunteerism. They are also grantmakers, giving over $40,000 in grants in 2018.

Contact Information

330 Marshall St. | Suite 300 | Lansing, MI 48912 | Directions
P: (517) 272-2870 | F: (517) 272-2871 | Email Us

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