During the week of November 12-18, 2015, Branch County Community Foundation will join more than 700 community foundations across America for Community Foundation Week. For more than 20 years, the effort has raised awareness about the increasingly important role of these philanthropic organizations in fostering local collaboration and innovation to address persistent civic and economic challenges.

“Community foundations impact lives, solve problems, and improve futures,” said Colleen Knight, the foundation’s director. “The Community Foundation is working to use our own resources more strategically and bring our public and private partners together to find innovative ways to support and strengthen our communities.”

Community foundations are independent, public entities that steward philanthropic resources from institutional and individual donors to local nonprofits that are the heart of strong, vibrant communities. Michigan community foundations collectively hold over $3 billion in assets and gave away over $2 million in grants in 2015. In the fiscal year that just ended for the Branch County Community Foundation awarded nearly $67,000 in college scholarships to local students and over $95,000 was given back to the community through grants.

Launched in 1989 through a proclamation by former president George H.W. Bush, the first Community Foundation Week included a congressional briefing about the work of community foundations throughout America and their collaborative approach to working with the public, private, and nonprofit sectors to address community problems.

The Branch County Community Foundation is a non-profit organization and a nationally accredited community grantmaking foundation that serves communities in Branch County and Colon, Michigan by supporting charitable giving, building permanent endowments, and connecting community resources.