How to Make a Grant
We realize that some of our charitable fund holders have abundant knowledge of community needs and are self-directed in their granting. Others rely on us to apprise them of projects and organizations that align with their interests.
Call us to:
- Learn about and address community priorities and emerging needs.
- Have us research specific areas of interest and nonprofit organizations.
- Arrange a site visit to a nonprofit to learn more about its work.
- Seek our advice on your grantmaking strategies.
- Involve your family in your philanthropy.
- Help you partner with other donors to fund projects you care about.
You can participate in granting at a level that works best for you.
Do you wish to grant anonymously?
Some individuals wish to make a quiet impact through an anonymous grant. You can give anonymously through your fund occasionally or on a permanent basis. Simply indicate your preference on your Grant Distribution Recommendation Form.
One easy step for you!
Complete a Grant Distribution Recommendation Form. These are available online at www.luzfdn.org, or by contacting Diane Dutko at 570.822.2065.
- Grant recommendations are welcome throughout the year.
- You may grant on a schedule convenient to you – whether monthly, quarterly, semi-annually or annually.
For Designated Funds:
- You determine the charitable organization(s) and distribution schedule during the creation of your Designated Fund. The Foundation fulfills your intentions, so you do not need to complete a Grant Distribution Recommendation Form.
The Luzerne Foundation will:
- Ensure you are granting to a qualified nonprofit organization in sound standing through staff research of tax-exempt status documentation, organizational fiscal health, annual reports, programs, and board and staff leadership.
- Prepare grant award letters and checks that include your fund’s name, purpose of your grant and instructions for acknowledging your generosity.
- Provide you with written confirmation of your grant awards.
- Forward correspondence to you from granting organizations.
Why do I see the word “recommend” when I make a grant?
The Internal Revenue Code does not allow you to make a charitable donation and retain control of the asset. When you made the gift to establish your fund, you received a tax deduction. Your gift became the property of The Foundation as required by federal law. The Foundation’s Board has the authority and responsibility to exercise oversight and discretion when approving grants. This ensures that grants from your fund will best fulfill their intended purpose and that your tax deduction will be protected. So, when you want to make a grant from your fund, you recommend it to the Board for its approval.
You May Recommend Grants:
- Locally, regionally and nationally
- To qualified:
- Nonprofit charities
- Government programs
- Faith-based organizations
- International charities with a U.S. recipient entity
- To organizations you support as a board member, as long as there is no personal benefit to you or your family.
To make the most efficient use of the resources of The Foundation and of the recipient organizations, minimum grant recommendations of $500 are preferred.
Federal Regulations Disallow Certain Types of Granting:
- To fulfill personal pledges or obligations (see explanation below)
- To individuals (except through a Scholarship Fund)
- Grants that provide a benefit to a donor or donor advisor
- Examples include:
- Membership dues
- Auction items
- Tickets to charitable functions
- Priority seating at cultural or sporting events
- Scholarships through a Donor Advised Fund (Ask us how to establish a separate Scholarship Fund to achieve your goals.)
According to IRS code, personal pledges cannot be fulfilled through your charitable fund. However, you may recommend that The Foundation make a pledge from your fund. Once our staff receives your recommendation, we submit it to our Board of Directors for approval. When approved, our staff advises the charitable organization that The Foundation is making a pledge through your fund, and we will outline the terms and conditions you have recommended to us.