LEVINE: The Foundation focuses on the needs of the community
LETTER FROM HARRY LEVINE
The Otsego County Community Foundation is up and running and wants you to join us as one of our founders.
We are FROM the community, FOR the community, and want to do everything in our power to improve the quality of life for all residents of Otsego County. We also want to live by our values, which include leading the community we serve.
The concept of forming a philanthropic organization to serve its community is not new. There are over 750 community foundations across the country. Successful foundations exist in New York counties north, east, south and west. The essential difference between a community foundation and a more common private foundation is that we are a public enterprise. Our funding comes from our audience and our responsibility is to our audience – our friends and neighbors.
Many successful community foundations in our New York area have taken decades to develop to the level where they are able to make a difference. Small but safe steps. One dollar at a time, invested so that expenses are limited to income at the rate of 4 or 5% per annum. The focus was initially on building up assets.
This is an important strategy that we are also working on. But we want to make a difference NOW. How can we do this?
Our approach is to raise seed money that we are willing to invest in our community rather than the stock market. Thus, our founders campaign aims to secure $ 2 million. These funds will be used over the next five years as our other strategy (accumulating investment assets) is pursued to ensure our future viability.
Ours is a modern model. It borrows from the world of venture capital and private equity. It is founded on the fundamental trust that our community will support our work. It meets the needs of today.
The formation of the Otsego County Community Foundation is a vital step in the health of our county. It is an opportunity for neighbors and friends to come together to work smart to solve the problems that need to be solved.
We hope that many of you will decide to join us as founders. The amount of your support is up to you. We want broad participation. We made it easy to reach us. Send us a check. Make a five-year commitment (to match our five-year business plan). Donate valued stocks or real estate. Use your credit card or Pay Pal.
Set up a monthly or annual payment plan. Go to our website for more information (cfotsego.org). Or just send us a check to PO Box 55, Springfield Center, NY 13468.
How do we get here, you ask? Well our goal is $ 2 million. Today, we are 90% of the way to this goal. Our entire board of directors joined as founders along with over 100 others.
And are we making a difference now? Absolutely yes!
Our COVID emergency fund disbursed $ 200,000 in 27 scholarships. We’ve helped families put food on their tables, provided shelter for the homeless, supported over 100 small businesses and more.
In 2021, we have allocated an additional $ 200,000 to address the challenges facing our community.
Please visit our website for more details on our rewards programs.
Do you want to join us as a founder? This is a unique opportunity to be part of a group of like-minded friends and neighbors dedicated to creating a force for good in our community.
We are deeply convinced that solidarity makes us stronger together.
Please join us.