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Field of Interest Funds: Hitting the Target, Now and Forever

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Here is another post about working with DCF, and why it can be a great way to achieve charitable goals…this one describes the Field of Interest fund.

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We all have passions that drive us, that occupy a space in our heart and motivate us to improve the world. One way to address those passions – and invest in our community’s future – is through the Field of Interest Fund.  These funds are designed by the donor to focus gifts in an area that is important to them, such as protecting the environment, supporting educational advances, or expanding access to the arts. And then, instruct the DCF board and staff to make sure good grants are made on that issue now and in the future.

It’s a way to narrow philanthropic giving, but keep your donation flexible enough to meet the changing needs of the community. The fund type allows for long-term community impact on issues that matter, while providing immediate benefit for the donor in the form of a tax deduction at the time the gift is made.

Think of it as hitting the target without having to nail the bullseye.

Here’s how it works:

1. Donors identify an area of personal interest, as broad or narrow as desired. (DCF staff can help narrow the focus if you wish). For example, the Jonathan Moyed CARE Fund, established at the DCF in 2001, is focused on innovative and creative ways to provide/support long term health programs for Delawareans. The DCF researches the organizations doing effective work in this important area and awards grants to make the greatest impact possible. Over the years, Moyed CARE fund has supported the Mary Campbell Center, Ingleside Homes, Nanticoke Health Services and other important organizations.

2. Donors create the endowed fund at DCF with a gift of cash, securities, or other property worth $15,000 or more. That gift becomes a permanent source of community funding, targeting the donor’s area of interest. Donors can add more funds at any time.

3. The DCF board awards grants to community organizations and programs that are making a difference in the selected area of interest. All the while, DCF handles the administrative requirements for the fund, including managing the fund assets and overseeing the fund’s investment.

There’s a lot of great work being done in philanthropy today. A field of interest fund is a great way to not only protect and promote the issues you care about, but also to ensure they get the support they need in the future.

It’s hitting the target — even from far away.