Community Endowment Fund

The aim of Orcas Island Community Foundation is to establish a stable financial base, in the form of the Community Endowment Fund and Organizational Endowment Funds, for the benefit of the entire Orcas Island community in perpetuity. This complex task encompasses, among other things, linking donors with compatible charities, maximizing returns on charitable investments, assessing community needs, and supporting existing and future nonprofit organizations through grant making.

Endowment is at the heart of the Orcas Island Community Foundation. An endowment attracts previously untapped charitable resources by drawing donors who want their gifts to operate in perpetuity with maximum return on their charitable contributions. It ensures a source of money for grant making even during years when annual gifts decrease, and enables development of a long-term grant-making program. Endowment provides stability, enabling the Foundation to function successfully during times when other local institutions may be experiencing stress.

Funding for our Community Grants program comes from income earned on OICF’s Community Endowment Fund investment. Whereas most private and corporate foundations generally allocate funds only to specified health and welfare organizations or to a particular field of interest, because OICF is a public foundation, it is charged with making grants across a broad spectrum of charitable activities within the geographical boundaries of Orcas Island. No grants are made to individuals, to other endowment funds, to political groups or religious organizations (if the funds would be used in whole or part for religious purposes) or to any group which discriminates on the basis of age, color, race, national origin, gender identity, marital status, sensory, mental or physical ability, sexual orientation or religious beliefs.

We welcome all Partners in Philanthropy. The OICF grants committee vets and prioritizes all applications. Inevitably, the amount of funding requested and approved exceeds the funds OICF has available. In order to address this gap, OICF invites all interested community members to participate as Partners in Philanthropy by making a contribution to the Partners fund. These contributions can be pooled to address the general need or designated for a specific vetted and approved grant application. If you are interested in becoming a Partner in Philanthropy, please contact Hilary Canty or any of the OICF Trustees.

Grant Recipients since 1998