This week, the Guilford Foundation joins more than 700 community foundations for Community Foundation Week to tell stories of the partnership of philanthropy with private and public community leaders and organizations.
“Our focus this week is to simply educate the community about the Guilford Foundation and philanthropy,” said Liza Petra, Executive Director of the Foundation. “We'll be using social media to share stories about donors, grants, and leadership initiatives.”
According to their website, Guilford Foundation’s mission statement is to “connect people who care with causes that matter to them, to enrich the quality of life in Guilford; now and for generations to come." The dollars raised and the decisions on how to spend that money stay local, right here in Guilford.
Five friends who came together to support the improvement efforts around the Guilford Green established the foundation in 1975. Since then, the foundation has been heavily involved in philanthropic efforts in Guilford. A recent Press Release stated this about the organization:
Today, the Guilford Foundation maintains an endowment of over $1.3 million and supports local initiatives from basic needs to arts to youth development to seniors. In addition to grant making to organizations that serve the community, the Guilford Foundation also works to identify emerging needs and galvanize support and awareness—to build philanthropy within the community. Our goal is to serve as the hub of charitable giving between citizens who care about Guilford and the local organizations doing the work.
Earlier this fall, at the end of September, the Guilford Foundation presented a grant in the amount of $2,500 to Virginia Gresham for her Girls Scouts’ Gold Award. The High School Senior plans to install plaques with historic facts on the 20 lampposts on the Guilford Green. It’s stories like this that the Foundation hopes to share during this week of recognition.
The first Community Foundation Week was launched in 1989 through a proclamation by former president George H.W. Bush. According to a press release, “It included a congressional briefing about the work of community foundations throughout America and their collaborative approach to working with the public, private, and nonprofit sectors to address community problems.”
“The Guilford Foundation works every day to help address the most pressing issues facing our community, including emergency fuel assistance; youth development; domestic violence services; environmental education and preservation; and the arts,” said John J. Crawford in a Press Release. “Community foundations impact lives, solve problems, and improve futures. In a down economy, with limited resources and a growing need for services to help families in need, we are more determined than ever to bring our community partners together to find innovative and effective solutions to some of our most challenging social problems."
As part of the weeklong recognition of Community Foundations, Petra will also be presenting at the Guilford and Madison Chamber of Commerce's "Women in Business" luncheon tomorrow, Wednesday, November 14th. “Although we've been around for 38 years, we are a very well-kept secret in the community,” concluded Petra. “We're hoping to use this week to get the word out about our work.”