Be Informed

Dear Friends,

Turbulent, unprecedented times, an abundance of caution and racial injustice - these phrases burst upon our psyche in recent months as the Coronavirus exposed both the fragility of our social service safety net and the seemingly unending generosity of our friends and neighbors.

Through it all, The Erie Community Foundation worked with generous donors, strong champions and dedicated nonprofits to accomplish many things previously thought impossible. Our ability to rapidly marshal resources was demonstrated by an emergency Erie Gives focused on the Coronavirus pandemic. After over a decade of sustained advocacy and financial support, the Pennsylvania Board of Education has approved an application to establish a the Erie County Community College. While challenges remain, this institution will increase educational attainment, strengthen our economy and create pathways out of poverty.

Our downtown is changing before our eyes thanks, in part, to our support of the Erie Downtown Development Corporation. We are learning how to use a portion of our corpus to make smart “mission related investments” and we helped attract an unprecedented $40 million dollar investment fund to Erie, focused on low income opportunity zone investments.

Each of our 2,412 grants helped nonprofits pursue worthy missions. Unrestricted funds, from donors past and present, are used to make competitive grants through a time-tested application process. Other grants are made in accordance with the wishes of our donors. Some gifts “pass through” ECF to support favored charities while other are used to create more permanent named funds

Last year, our donors made 23,595 gifts totaling $21,106,075. There are now 856 different named funds operating within The Erie Community Foundation with a 2019 year end market value of $286 million. Each fund is accomplishing its mission. In fact, any charitable purpose can be accomplished through The Erie Community Foundation.

We invite you to learn more by reading this annual report, or by contacting our staff or any member of our board of trustees. We also encourage you to consider what missions you can accomplish through thoughtful philanthropic and estate planning.

Sincerely,

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