Frequently Asked Questions

The Community Foundation is an organization that should be of interest to individuals who:

  • have the capacity through their lifetime (or through their estate) to make a charitable
  • contribution of $50,000 or more and, have a strong interest in contributing to our local community and leaving a lasting legacy.

Many of these individuals likely donate to local charities but may be uncomfortable making a sizeable gift to a small volunteer organization or to a single organization. The Community Foundation can help by protecting the capital of

The Community Foundation takes a broad and inclusive view of what community is and what it needs to succeed – our grants support local charities providing everything from shelter, food, and care for those most in need, to recreation, the arts and the environment. Since its inception in 1999, the Foundation has made grants to over 100 local organizations.

The Foundation manages a wide variety of endowment funds.

Our largest fund is our Smart & Caring Community Fund – this fund enables the Foundation to
respond to the greatest needs of our community. Twice each year any local charitable organization can
apply and our Grants Committee makes decisions on how best to allocate the available funds to benefit
the community.

We also have several funds focused on specific “fields of interest” (e.g. seniors), funds dedicated to
specific local organizations (e.g. Couchiching Conservancy), and scholarship funds (e.g. apprenticeship
bursary) ‐ see the accompanying overview of our current funds for full details.
For large donations, we would be delighted to discuss.

The Foundation is able to handle most types of charitable gifts including outright gifts (cash, real
estate), appreciated securities, bequests, life insurance, and charitable remainder trusts.

The Foundation uses portfolio manager Connor, Clark & Lunn to manage most of the endowment
funds in a pooled portfolio, overseen by our Investment Committee. In addition we are able to establish
alternate investment manager arrangements where required. Our investment management fees are low
(and will get lower as we grow) and our returns have consistently performed well compared to market

The Foundation is fully internally funded and does not do any fundraising for annual operating costs.
Our operating expenses are extremely low as we have contracted with the Community Development
Corporation to provide the administration of our organization. We collect a small administration fee
from all of the endowment funds to cover these expenses.

The biggest difference is that the Community Foundation is a local organization lead by a passionate
group of volunteers who understand the needs of our community. We can only make grants to
charities in the local area (i.e. Orillia, Ramara, Severn, Oro‐medonte and Chippewas of Rama first
nation). Unlike a private foundation, there are no start‐up costs with the Community Foundation. As
a volunteer organization, our low operating costs enable us to charge a low annual fee compared to
Commercial Donor advised funds or Private Foundations.

We welcome your interest!

We would be delighted to speak with you about the Community Foundation and answer any questions. We are happy to share our stories, explain the tax benefits of charitable giving, and suggest how you can help us strengthen our community.