Philanthropy is Transformational

When the Community Foundation for Southwest Washington first defined its mission and drafted its bylaws in 1984 the world looked a whole lot different. In thirty years we have seen the fall of the Eastern Bloc and the rise of the Internet. During this time, the total population of our three county service area has nearly doubled.

Philanthropy has also changed in thirty years. A growing number of nonprofits have forced the sector to more actively demonstrate transparency, measure effectiveness and communicate outcomes. Grantmaking has also moved from a more traditional proposal-based model to become more proactive and engaged in the process. Today, terms like venture philanthropy, strategic philanthropy and impact investing are driving the course of Community Foundations nationwide.

As the charitable sector has matured, so has your Community Foundation. Our team is working hard to make the Foundation a more effective catalyst for change, and our year in review perfectly captures these efforts.

We stepped up to lead a collaborative effort that captured the values and beliefs of our region. We improved our technology offerings to provide donors with online fund management and grantmaking data. We promoted our region’s culture of giving through the first-annual Give More 24!

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Annual Report

We became more resolute in our discretionary granting focus by providing six $30,000 anniversary grants to nonprofits addressing the issue of intergenerational poverty locally.

This cause now receives a majority our discretionary granting. In 2014, that meant providing funds for early learning programs and approving our very first multi-year grant, which will support a housing and education collaborative in the Skyline neighborhood over the next three years. By committing to one cause and directing grant dollars toward strategic, upstream approaches, we hope to create measurable community impact.

All these traits—commitment, collaboration and adaptation—show how your Community Foundation is going beyond the give. We made many advances in our first thirty years, but what lies ahead is even greater. There is always room to improve and that’s what we plan to do in the coming years. You can help too. Define what impact means to you and explore how your philanthropy can transform our community.



Jennifer Rhoads, CFP

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2013 Annual Report

Impact Story

Gleaning Impact from Experience

Impact Story


Annual Granting

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Annual Giving

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Lifetime Numbers

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