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Overview | Community Investments



A History of Grantmaking 

For over 50 years, the Lehigh Valley Community Foundation has distributed grants across the Lehigh Valley. In LVCF’s 2020-21 fiscal year, the community foundation granted over $6.7 million in funding to nonprofit organizations. This included 671 grants that supported more than 322 nonprofits. These grants include all of LVCF’s philanthropic vehicles from Donor Designated Funds, Scholarships, Donor Advised Funds, Area of Interest Funds, Agency Funds, Foundation-Directed grantmaking, and additional fund types.

Foundation-Directed Grantmaking

Foundation-directed grantmaking are the strategies that the Community Foundation identifies and are supported by unrestricted or partially-restricted donor funds. LVCF’s foundation-directed grantmaking has shifted drastically in the past 4 years. In 2018, the foundation entered into a pilot phase to transition the way that the foundation is making impact with foundation-directed funds. From 2018 – 2021, LVCF launched several different proactive and responsive grantmaking strategies including the Nonprofit Effectiveness Pilot (renamed as LVCF’s Capacity Building model), Census 2020 fund to support a complete Lehigh Valley count, responding to the COVID-19 crisis, and the Fund to Fight Substance Use Disorder to combat the opioid crisis. Through this transition phase, the Community Foundation evaluated the pilot phase and listened to partners to understand impact.

In the 2021-2022 fiscal year, the Community Foundation launched it’s more permanent grantmaking platform. The Community Foundation will continue to adjust Foundation-directed grantmaking in future years based on what we are learning, an ongoing review of community needs in the Lehigh Valley, and donor interest. The Foundation-directed Leadership Grantmaking platform supports three focus areas, while continuing to provide ongoing support to other donor-defined areas or community needs (see Support Grantmaking)

Foundation-Directed Leadership Grantmaking | Learn more...

Community Investment Funds generate the unrestricted dollars that support Foundation-Directed grantmaking.

Foundation-Directed Support Grantmaking | Learn more...

As stated above, the Community Foundation offers ongoing support and resources to additional areas defined as Support Grantmaking. These strategies shift based on the needs of the community and donors’ interest. Opportunities for this current year are listed under the Support Grantmaking website pages.  

  • Fund to Fight Substance Use Disorder 
  • Upper Bucks Community Fund  
  • George T. Walker Charitable Fund  
  • Synergy Fund  
  • Area-of-Interest Funds 

Donor-Directed Grantmaking

Occasionally, donor-advisors ask the Foundation for information about community needs and opportunities or about specific non-profit organizations. The Foundation is pleased to provide such assistance to donor-advisors. The Foundation will not provide nonprofit organizations with contact information for a donor advisor or provide a proposal to a donor advisor unless the donor advisor specifically requests so.


The Lehigh Valley Community Foundation manages a number of scholarship funds. These funds have been established by donors with a particular interest in supporting students from a specific high school, students attending a specific college or university, or students with specific academic skills or goals.

There are two types of scholarship funds: (1) those that are administered through schools and other charitable organizations ("school-coordinated" and "community-coordinated"), and (2) those that are administered through applications accepted by LVCF ("LVCF-coordinated").  

LVCF-coordinated scholarships are reviewed by the LVCF Scholarship Committee.  The committee is comprised of professionals with expertise in reviewing & evaluating admission applications.

Foundant Grants Portal

Foundant is the Lehigh Valley Community Foundation’s grants management portal. This portal allows users to view, edit, and submit grant applications and related documents.  Learn more...

ASK MEGAN | Learn more about the community investments/grants opportunities at LVCF

Megan Briggs, Director of Community Investments, Lehigh Valley Community FoundationMegan Briggs
Director of Community Investments
Lehigh Valley Community Foundation
840. W. Hamilton Street, Suite 310
Allentown, PA 18101
610 351-5353, ext. 11 |