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LVCF Participates in National Effort to Highlight Local Impact of Philanthropy

The Community Foundation’s Grantmaking hits $5.6 Million in FY 2017

Allentown, Pa., November 16, 2017—In celebration of national Community Foundation Week, the Lehigh Valley Community Foundation announced that its grantmaking for the fiscal year ending June 30, 2017, totaled $5.6 million, a high-water mark in the 50-year history of the Foundation.

The Community Foundation made 486 grants to 283 grantees totaling $5.6 million in Fiscal Year 2017. Eighty-eight percent ($4.9 million) of the grant funding benefited Lehigh Valley organizations. Fourteen organizations received funding of $100,000 or more.

The Foundation is cause-neutral with a mission to support a wide-spectrum of community needs. Program areas receiving funding included community development, education, human services, health care, arts/culture, history/heritage, and environment.

During the spring of 2017, the Community Foundation eclipsed another important milestone with $50 million in assets, ending the year with 220 funds on the books.  

“Community foundations impact lives, solve problems, and improve futures,” said Bernie J. Story, president and CEO of the Foundation. “We are proud to have generated these funds and be among the leading funders that improve the quality of life in the Lehigh Valley and beyond.”

“It’s a testament to the generosity of people who live in our region that enable us to live out our mission of promoting philanthropy, encouraging collaboration, and providing expertise on charitable giving with a focus on the Lehigh Valley,” Story continued. “We are more determined than ever to bring our community partners together to find innovative and effective solutions for some of our most challenging social problems and advance the most promising of opportunities to benefit our residents,” Story concluded.

“The Community Foundation is the perfect solution for people looking to give back to the community in any number of ways,” said Erika Riddle Petrozelli, director of donor services. “We provide simple, powerful, and highly personalized approaches to giving, offering a variety of giving tools and types of funds to help donors achieve their charitable goals.”

During the previous fiscal year in 2016, the Community Foundation issued $3.5 million in grants, with approximately 80% going to non-profit organizations in the Lehigh and Northampton counties. “The growth of our funds that enable us to impact the community through grantmaking have been buoyed by a number of factors in fiscal year 2017,” explained Riddle Petrozelli. “Our increased visibility and awareness in the community, combined with the popularity of donor-advised funds, and the growth of endowment funds in a strong market, has strengthened our position to improve the quality of live in the Lehigh Valley."

About Community Foundation Week

LVCF joins with 780 community foundations across America celebrating Community Foundation Week. For 28 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 Foundation Week, created in 1989 by former president George H.W. Bush, recognizes the work of community foundations throughout America and their collaborative approach to working with the public, private, and nonprofit sectors to address community problems.