Cedar Grove Signature Fund Makes First Grants

Published: January 26, 2021 | By: Greater Cedar Rapids Community Foundation | Category:

In 2020, a local family established the Cedar Grove Signature Fund with the goal of supporting the nonprofits that impact the quality of life in Cedar Rapids. In December, the Fund made its first grants, distributing more than $305,000 to nine local organizations.

Signature Funds are offered by the Community Foundation as an alternative to a private foundation for donors with significant charitable assets. These funds offer donors an independent identity, enhanced investment options, simplified administration and a high level of personal service to help them meet their charitable goals. The funding priorities, exclusions, decision-making and timing of grant awards are all determined by the donor.

This is the first Signature Fund established at the Greater Cedar Rapids Community Foundation.

“Signature Funds are an exciting part of Family Philanthropy services offered at the Community Foundation,” said Susan Willey, Director of Planned Giving at the Community Foundation. “This family, who wishes to remain anonymous, was looking for ways to involve the next generation in their philanthropy, and this fund is helping them solidify their tradition of giving.”

The cornerstone of Family Philanthropy involves helping families determine their philanthropic goals and values, then establishing a plan to bring that vision to life. Community Foundation staff are 21/64 Certified Advisors, which means they are specially trained to facilitate multigenerational conversations about philanthropy and legacy planning.

“We helped this family identify the kinds of projects and organizations they would like to support,” Susan said. “They are very excited to now be making grants that will impact our community, and it has been such a pleasure to help them on this journey.”

The Cedar Grove Signature Fund accepts applications once per year for the fall grant cycle. The organizations and projects that received funding for its first distributions in 2020 are listed below:

Organization Purpose Amount
Brucemore, Inc. 2021 Summer Season at Brucemore $21,000
ConnectCR ConnectCR Capital Campaign $50,000
Feed Iowa First Equitable Land Access $19,000
Iowa Ceramics and Glass Studio Community Outreach Through Arts Education $20,000
Kids First Law Center Restorative Justice Prevents Youth Violence $50,000
Matthew 25 Healthy Time Check $25,000
Monarch Research Project 1,000 Mile Pilot (2021 Planting Season) $20,097
NewBoCo Support to Expand DeltaV Code School $50,000
Tanager Place Camp Tanager Capacity Expansion $50,000


For more information on the Cedar Grove Signature Fund, click here.

To learn more about Family Philanthropy services offered at the Community Foundation, click here.

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