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FAIRFIELD, Conn. – Recent events have laid bare immense societal failings that seem to dwarf our power to intervene. What can one person, one family, or even a corporation do to tackle complex, systemic problems that in many instances are as old as our nation or even time itself? When armed with the unique capabilities of a private foundation, the answer is “quite a lot, actually,” says Foundation Source, the nation’s leading provider of comprehensive services for private foundations.

In its Toolkit for Social Action, a collection of articles, Foundation Source explains how private foundations can use each of the following interventions to lift disadvantaged communities, address inequality, boost inclusivity, and promote a better, more just world for all:

Awarding Scholarships: Private foundations are empowered to award scholarships, enabling them to achieve a specific goal, such as swelling the ranks of healthcare professionals, or assisting children (and adults) from disadvantaged communities.
Granting to Individuals: Private foundations can deliver charitable funds directly to individuals and families in case of disaster, medical emergency, or financial hardship. Because they don’t need to seek prior approval from the IRS to make these grants, they can respond to the urgent and growing need quickly. For example, many struggling families are one emergency expense away from homelessness. A broken-down car, a sick child, or unpaid utility bills might be all that it takes for them to find themselves facing eviction. That’s why Foundation Source clients Barbara and Stephen Miller use their private foundation to make one-time grants of less than $1,000 directly to at-risk families. To date, the foundation has helped over 600 individuals stay in their homes. Follow-up reports indicate that after one year, over 90 percent of grant recipients were still housed.
Impact Investing: Giving money away isn’t the only way to generate a positive social outcome. Impact investing enables private foundations to put their endowment assets to work on behalf of their missions as well. Foundations can also advance their missions by making socially responsible, community, and program-related investments (i.e., loans, loan guarantees, and equity investments).
“We all know that this is a time of unprecedented and deepening need,” says Foundation Source CEO Susan Friedlander Calzone. “But with vision and conviction coupled with the capabilities of their private foundations, our clients are meeting this moment. We are inspired by their action and example.”

About Foundation Source (

Foundation Source is the nation’s largest provider of comprehensive support services for private foundations. Our complete outsourced solution includes foundation creation (as needed), administrative support, active compliance monitoring, philanthropic advisory, tax and legal expertise, and online foundation management tools.

Approaching our third decade, Foundation Source provides its services to more than 1,650 family, corporate, and professionally staffed foundations, of all sizes, nationwide. We work in partnership with wealth management firms, law firms, accounting firms, and family offices as well as directly with individuals and families. Foundation Source is headquartered in Fairfield, Connecticut.

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