Libby Fennell just accepted a $500,000 donation on behalf of the Community Foundation for the CSRA, but she says businesses don’t have to donate that much to make a difference in the local community.
Fennell – the Community Foundation’s Director of Development and Donor Services – received the $500,000 check from Jeff Annis, who recently sold his successful pest control company Advanced Services, after more than 40 years in the industry. The Foundation and Annis held a press conference on Wednesday, Jan. 5. “Our goal is to match people with their passions,” she says. “All the funds we hold are charitable funds.” Founded in 1995, the Foundation has various funds for philanthropic giving, including Donor Advised Funds and Designated Funds. “Over 60% of our portfolio are Donor Advised Funds,” Fennell explains. Beth and Jeff Annis Charities was established as that type of fund. ABD previously reported about the couple’s $500,000 donation that will be used for research and treatment of childhood illnesses. He and his wife were inspired to create the fund in honor of their 8-year-old grandson who was born with a serious heart condition. “He has the ability to donate to any cause he would like to,” she states at the press conference.
While it is possible to donate directly to charities, Fennell says there are some benefits to partnering with the Community Foundation. Some businesses want to donate to several nonprofits, but they don’t want to go through the process of setting up a 501c3 organization. Businesses can instead set up a fund to donate to multiple charities simultaneously, and the Foundation handles all the required paperwork and administrative tasks. While giving isn’t restricted to local nonprofits, “The majority of the funds stay in the CSRA,” she adds.
Annis made a very large charitable contribution, but much smaller amounts can help as well. “It could be $5,000 or $10,000 you have set aside,” Fennell says.
For more information, visit cfcsra.org or call 706-724-1314.