The Branch County Community Foundation is extremely flexible in the types of assets that may be used to make a contribution to an existing fund or start a new fund. Donors may contribute gifts during their lifetimes or through wills or trusts. Gifts may be made in memory of or in honor of a friend or loved one.

You can easily give to one or more funds through a single gift by check; online by clicking DONATE NOW button on any page; or even by transferring stock. (Please contact us for stock transfer information.) Just tell us what amount you want allocated to each fund, and we’ll take care of the rest. As you decide where you want your donation to go, consider a gift---or an additional gift---to the Forever Fund. The Forever Fund supports the Community Foundation as we work with our partners to build strong, prosperous communities through grantmaking and connecting other community resources.

Gifts of Cash

Gifts of cash are most popular for many people who make smaller contributions to the Foundation. The cash gifts contributed each year help the community's endowment funds grow and allow the Foundation to expand our support to the community through grants.


The Community Foundation gratefully accepts gifts of securities. If either public or private securities have appreciated over time, the owner may incur substantial capital gains taxes if the stock are sold outright. The donation of appreciated securities can offer the donor attractive income tax benefits, including relief from capital gains tax liability.

  • Outright Gifts

    Securities may be given to the Community Foundation at their present market value as an outright gift. This way, donors avoid all capital gains tax and also receive a charitable income tax deduction.

  • Deferred Gifts

    By using securities to fund charitable remainder trusts, charitable annuity trusts, and other planned giving vehicles, the donor can avoid capital gains tax liability and is eligible for a charitable income tax deduction upon transfer of the assets. A gift of securities left to the Community Foundation is deductible from the gross estate, reducing estate taxes.

Life Insurance Policies

Many people are surprised to learn that their life insurance policies can become a charitable gift. Life insurance is usually purchased to protect the family from financial loss due to the death and loss of income of one or more family members. Normally, the need for life insurance protection lessens as an individual grows older. Children are grown, self-supporting, and through college; the mortgage has been paid; and an estate of other assets has been acquired. The insurance has served its original purposes, and can become a gift to the Community Foundation. The donor receives an immediate tax deduction (usually equal to the cash surrender value).

  • Outright Gifts

    If the donor decides to relinquish ownership of the policy by assigning all rights, titles, and interest in the policy to the Community Foundation, the donor may be eligible for a charitable income tax deduction for the present value or future premium payments on the policy. If ownership of the policy is donated to the Community Foundation, even if ownership is retained by the donor, any proceeds received by the Community Foundation will be deductible by the insured estate as a charitable contribution, thus reducing the estate tax.

    Donors can also contribute insurance even though the policy is not fully paid up. The donor can name the Community Foundation the beneficiary, continue to maintain the policy, and receive a charitable tax deduction for premiums paid to keep the policy in force.

  • Deferred Gifts

    Donors can contribute life insurance policies to fund a life income trust. These life income trusts (i.e. charitable remainder annuity trusts or charitable remainder unitrusts) are advantageous giving arrangements for many donors. A donor can make an irrevocable gift of an insurance policy's present value, yet reserve income for the donor or other beneficiaries for life.

Real Estate

Gifts of real estate can include homes, condominiums, apartments, undeveloped land, farmland, and rental property. Such gifts may help the donor alleviate management costs and responsibilities if the property were held, and capital gains tax and broker's fee if the property were sold.

When you give gifts of real estate to the Foundation, the Foundation in turn sells the property, and - depending on the amount - contributes the proceeds to an existing fund of your choice or opens (or increases) your own fund with the income from the sale. You receive a charitable tax deduction equal to the fair market value of the property, and you pay no capital gains tax on the sale.

  • Outright Gifts

    By making an outright gift of a piece of real estate, the donor avoids capital gains tax and receives a charitable income tax deduction.

  • Deferred Gifts

    Trusts - If real estate is used to fund a charitable remainder unitrust or a charitable lead trust, a donor typically avoids the capital gains tax liability on the transfer of the asset to the trust.

    Bequests - If a donor leaves real property to the Community Foundation by will, estate taxes are substantially reduced as the property is removed from the taxable estate.

    Retained Life Estates - Making an irrevocable donation of real estate while retaining the right to use the property often results in the immediate benefit of a substantial tax deduction. The income tax deduction can mean significant tax savings in the year of the gift and may be carried forward for up to five additional years.

    Source: The Essentials of Planned Giving, JOHN BROWN LIMITED, INC; 2nd Edition