Community Foundations Canada

Community foundations are charitable organizations dedicated to improving communities within a defined geographic area.  We do this by pooling charitable gifts from donors to create endowment funds and using the investment income to make grants.

Around the world, there are over 1800 community foundations working to make an impact locally, nationally and globally. Community foundations are one of the world’s fastest growing philanthropic movements and Canada is a leader in facilitating this growth.

Banker and lawyer, Frederick Goff founded the first community foundation in Cleveland in 1914.  Mr. Goff’s vision was to pool the charitable resources of Cleveland’s philanthropists – living and dead – into a single great and permanent endowment for the betterment of the city.  Community leaders would then forever distribute the interest that the Foundation’s resources would accrue to the fund for “such charitable purposes as will best make for the mental, moral, and physical improvement of the inhabitants of Cleveland.”

In 1921, community foundations arrived in Canada with the establishment of the Winnipeg Foundation.  The Vancouver Foundation, Canada’s largest foundation, began in 1943.  The Comox Valley Community Foundation had its beginnings in 1996.

The CVCF is a proud partner of Community Foundations Canada, a network of over 191 foundations and collectively we continue to be one of the largest contributors to Canadian charities and nonprofits. Our collective assets grew to exceed $4.8 billion and in 2015, more than $250 was contributed to foundations while 0ver $215 million was distributed back into our communities.