Designated Frequently Asked Questions

For more information on setting up your own designated funds, please visit Designated Funds.

What is the purpose of a designated fund?

Designated funds are a way you can provide a steady, long-term source of income for one or more nonprofits or community initiatives that you believe in or connect to.

How does a designated fund work?

Once you establish a designated fund, grants are made regularly to the nonprofits and causes you’ve specified. Grantmaking assets are dependent on the amount in the fund and based on a schedule established when you created the fund.

Who is the ideal donor for a designated fund?

Designated funds are great for donors who know exactly which nonprofits they would like to support, but do not want to be actively involved in grantmaking. Additionally, designated funds are favored by individuals and families who want to leave a legacy gift supporting specific nonprofits they care about and for memorializing those who had a particular cause they were passionate about.

Can a fund have more than one named beneficiary?

Yes. A designated fund can name one or several nonprofits to receive distributions. We’ll work with you to specify a percentage of support for each in the original fund agreement.

Can a fund be for a specific program?

Yes. You can be as specific as you wish in your fund agreement. For example, provide general operating support, or name a specific program or aspect of a nonprofit’s operations, including building maintenance, staff training, etc. Designated funds can specify they are never to be used for a specific aspect of a nonprofit’s operations, such as capital improvements. Stipulations such as these must be written into the fund agreement.

What happens if the nonprofit dissolves or changes its mission?

This depends on the specific situation. Before making grants, we always make sure a nonprofit can carry out the donor’s original intentions. If we find the nonprofit can no longer carry out your intentions, we will work with the community (if applicable) to redirect the funds to another organization.

How often can grants be made from a designated fund?

Grants can be made annually, semi-annually or quarterly. The exact amount of the grant will depend on the fund’s available balance. The grants are made automatically. Timing of the grants shall be designated in the fund agreement.