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Types of Grantmakers

Options for giving

Philanthropy today encompasses a wide array of options through which people can direct their charitable dollars. Regardless of the size or type of the gift—such as cash, appreciated stock, artwork or real estate—there are numerous ways people can channel their philanthropic assets. Increasingly, donors are choosing to combine multiple vehicles as a means to leverage their giving and achieve the greatest impact with their charitable resources.

When considering your philanthropic options, we strongly recommend that you secure qualified financial, tax and legal advice specific to your situation.

• Community Foundations
Foundations that build their endowments through contributions from many donors and distribute funds within a given geographic region, typically focusing on local needs

• Corporate Foundations
Corporate foundations are private foundations that are established by for-profit corporations but are legally separate from the parent corporation

• Company Giving Programs
Programs within a company that make charitable contributions from the company's pre-tax income

• Donor-Advised Funds
Funds administered by a community foundation or other financial service institution that allow donors to make recommendations regarding how income from their fund is distributed

• Family Foundations
Family foundations, though not a legal term, are private foundations where the original donor or the donor's family play a significant role in governance

• Giving Circles 
Individual donors who pool resources around a specific cause or interest area

• Independent Foundations
Private foundations that are usually endowed by one source, such as an individual's bequest or the conversion of a nonprofit to a for-profit organization

• Operating Foundations
Private foundations that use most of their income to provide charitable services or programs of their own, rather than making grants to outside organizations

• Planned Giving
A deferred gift, usually made through a will or bequest, that directs funds to an established philanthropy or charity

• Public Foundations
Public foundations - or grantmaking public charities - are nonprofit organizations that operate significant grantmaking programs in addition to their other charitable activities

• Individual Donors
Individuals who make direct and significant charitable contributions with no formal administrative structure