You can let us know which nonprofits you would like to support in one of three ways:
- Send them in writing, using this form, to the Long Island Community Foundation, 1864 Muttontown Road, Syosset NY 11791
- Fax them to 516-348-0570, Attn: Donor Relations
- Use our online service for donors, Advisor Xpress
You can download a Grant Suggestion form or request one from our donor department at (516) 348-0575 x226.
We ensure that the charities suggested are recognized by the Internal Revenue Service as tax-exempt and that they meet our standards for responsible management and effective programs.
The name and address of the charity, the amount of the proposed grant, and its purpose (general support or a specific project). Including a contact person at the charity is also helpful to us.
If you would like us to send a copy of the check to someone besides the advisors of the fund, please send us their name and address.
Yes. You set up the fund to benefit charity. If you don't make any recommendations for more than a year, we'll remind you. We also understand that some donors want to accumulate income over several years in order to make a large grant, and, to the extent permitted by law, we work to accommodate them.
Yes. There are many effective nonprofits on Long Island, and choosing among them can be difficult. We hope that our newsletters, annual reports, and occasional papers on special topics sent to donors expand your knowledge of philanthropy. Our grantmaking staff is among the best in its field and can identify priority needs, suggest charitable organizations, and provide information to help you make an informed decision. For further help, please contact David Okorn at (516) 348-0575 x226.
Yes. If you are the founder of the fund, please fill out this nomination form
and mail or e-mail
it to us.
Yes, if you are the founder, you can do so by sending us a letter requesting the name change.
No, grants from donor-advised funds may only be used for charitable purposes. Our policy is based on the advice of our legal counsel (and the Council on Foundations’ legal counsel). We have been advised that until the IRS issues rules saying otherwise donors may not receive more than an incidental benefit as the result of a distribution from a donor advised fund. Split payments (bifurcation), where the donor individually pays the non-charitable portion and the charitable portion is paid out of a donor advised fund, are not permitted. This means that our grants may not be used to pay, for example, dues, memberships, the charitable portion of a ticket to a charitable event, for goods bought at charitable auctions, or a donor’s legally enforceable pledge. When we learn that our grant has been misused, we contact the donor and ask that the entire grant be refunded.
Assuming there are funds available to make the grant, and if an organization is already in our database of approved charities, a check will generally be sent within seven to ten days. If we need to review the charity to make sure it meets our standards, it may take two to six weeks. There are rare instances in which it takes longer than six weeks to make a grant.
Yes. When a check is issued, you will be sent a copy of the grant check and voucher. Checks are sent directly to the charity.
If it is an anonymous grant, you will not receive a copy of the check.
Yes, unless you don't want it to. A voucher accompanies each check and notes the name of the fund from which the grant was made, and states that the grant was "made at the suggestion of [name]." If you would like the gift to be anonymous, please let us know.
This is a trickier question than it may seem. You may not legally use our name to publicly solicit funds (in which case you are acting as an unauthorized "agent" of The Trust). Nor can we pay expenses of a fundraiser you host in order to raise money for your fund. However, you certainly can ask friends to contribute to your fund (say, in lieu of a Christmas present to you, or in honor of your birthday).
Absolutely. What's often convenient for some donors is that we keep copies of our acknowledgements. When tax time rolls around and you can't find your original, we'll send you a copy.
Funds may be established with the following: cash, securities traded on major exchanges, closely held stock, mutual fund shares, retirement plan assets, interests in limited partnerships, literature copyrights, and movie and television rights. We are skilled at evaluating unusual assets and have the flexibility to accommodate them when suitable for charity.
If you want to give cash, make your check payable to "Community Funds, Inc." and write the name of the fund on the memo portion of the check.
Many donors prefer to contribute appreciated securities (since you receive the deduction for the current value, and pay no capital gains). If that's the case, we'd be happy to send you a memo explaining how to transfer the securities to our account, where we will then give instructions to sell them and remit the proceeds to your fund.
Non-publicly traded securities
Non-publicly traded securities may also be appropriate gifts. For these, please contact our counsel, Jane Wilton, at (212) 686 - 2563. She can determine whether we can accept the gift and walk you through the process.
There are three ways to create a permanent endowment:
- You can leave principal in your donor-advised fund
- You can add to your fund by bequest
- You can create a fund by bequest
For more information, please visit: Giving Today, Build for Tomorrow.
Find out more about funding the future:
This is often done. In order for us to do so, however, there must be the total amount of the grant in the fund at the time our commitment is made.
Private foundations and community foundations are precluded from paying someone else's legal obligations. If you have made a pledge (by signing a commitment) we cannot make a grant fulfilling that obligation. However, if there isn't a pre-existing pledge, we'd be happy to make a grant for your university's annual campaign, and if you let us know, we'll ask that it be specifically credited to your class's gift.
While it is certainly a charitable impulse, it is not seen by the tax code as a deductible activity, and therefore we can't write a check at your request to a needy individual. We can, and do, however, make grants to hundreds of organizations that provide shelter, food, and other necessities for the needy.
As a matter of policy, our board has decided not to permit such transfers.
We do not make grants to nonprofits outside the United States. Many major foreign organizations have established "American Friends of..." and these, because they are based in the U.S. and follow regulations governing U.S. charities, are often good substitutes for direct support. Proposed legislation may make it impossible to make foreign grants from donor-advised funds.
Currently, we offer three investment vehicles for Community Funds, Inc.
- A money market fund for donors who anticipate making grants with a substantial portion of the funds they establish.
- An investment pool of managed accounts in several asset classes for donors with a longer-term orientation.
- A mutual fund pool consisting largely of a bond fund for donors who want current income.
Read more about these investment options here »
Funds held in trust are not part of Community Funds, Inc. The trusts are invested in balanced accounts, using the proprietary equity and fixed income vehicles of each trustee bank.
From time to time, as circumstances warrant, you may ask us to change the investment, but please remember the money you have given us to establish a fund legally becomes our money, and while mindful of your interests or concerns, our decision on appropriate investment vehicles must remain the final one.