Frequently Asked Questions

What is a Community Foundation?

"A Community Foundation is a grantmaking public charity dedicated to improving the lives of people in a defined local geographic area. It brings together the financial resources of individuals, families, and businesses to support effective nonprofits in their communities.” - Source: Council on Foundations. To learn more watch this short video

What is a Donor Advised Fund and how does it work?

A Donor Advised Fund works like a charitable bank account and allows donors of all sizes and interests to engage in philanthropy. Donors can make tax-deductible contributions of cash or illiquid assets into a Donor Advised Fund and then recommend grants over-time to their favorite causes. Donor Advised Funds can be used for short-term giving or become an endowed fund to create a perpetual giving fund lasting for generations.  

What is the difference between a Donor Advised Fund and a Private Foundation?

To keep it simple, you can think of a Donor Advised Fund as a Private Foundation without the administrative burden. Donor Advised Funds are often a much simpler and cheaper way to fulfill your philanthropic goals. See the full comparison of Donor Advised Funds vs. Private Foundations

Why should I open a charitable fund through the Community Foundation of Utah?

You can open a charitable fund at a variety of financial institutions, but giving through the Community Foundation of Utah has extra benefits. We are a nonprofit committed to making life better for the people of Utah, and the more we grow, the more we can invest in programs and initiatives to help our state. 

We also have considerable expertise in the Utah non-profit sector and can help you craft a giving strategy to maximize the impact your charitable dollars. 

Can I give assets other than cash to a charitable fund?

Absolutely.  We accept gifts of public and private stock, real estate and other complex assets.  

Why should I do my giving through the Community Foundation of Utah instead of giving directly to the organizations I want to support?

Sometimes, giving directly is the right approach. However, giving through the Community Foundation of Utah allows for flexibility and the opportunity to be strategic about your giving.  Opening a fund at the Community Foundation of Utah provides you with an immediate tax-deduction on your gift, along with the time to thoughtfully consider exactly how you choose to give. 

Additionally, the charitable fund can be invested so it grows over time, allowing you to give more and give in perpetuity. 

Are there fees associated with a charitable fund?

Almost all institutions who manage charitable funds charge fees. One of the benefits of opening a charitable fund with the Community Foundation of Utah is the fee is not really a fee at all. It is a contribution to a nonprofit dedicated to improving the lives of Utah. The more the Community Foundation of Utah grows, the more we can take on critical initiatives to improve the communities we all love. Think of our “fees” as an additional donation to your community!  

Does the Community Foundation of Utah give to charitable organizations outside of Utah? 

Yes. While our focus and expertise resides in Utah, our funds can give to organizations across the country. 

I’m not a multi-millionaire, is the Community Foundation of Utah still a resource for me?

Absolutely. We are dedicated to bringing more and more Utahns into the world of philanthropy. You can start a Donor Advised Fund with an initial contribution of only $10,000.  

I only have a small amount to give. How can I make the most of my donation? 

We have a number of giving opportunities where even a gift of $50 can make a big impact. You can pool your gift with others through our Field of Interest Funds, Giving Circles or the Community Endowment and truly move the needle on community issues.