More on Community Foundations


Community Foundations serve a specific geographic area; in Iowa that may mean a particular city, county or region.  No matter what area is being served by a community foundation, there are some distinct features that serve as common threads for all of Iowa's community foundations.


What are the Benefits to your clients to give through their local community foundation.

First, they receive personalized service. We make giving easy, flexible and effective, accepting a wide variety of gifts and providing donors the greatest flexibility in meeting charitable giving goals. Your clients can contribute cash, stocks, property, and bequests. They may establish an Unrestricted, Field of Interest, Designated or Donor Advised Fund in their name or in the name of a loved one. Your client's gift will gain the maximum tax advantage under state and federal law- including the possibility of an Endow Iowa Tax Credit.


We can help you achieve their charitable giving goals.

Your clients gain local expertise. Community Foundations have staff members dedicated to understanding local issues and areas of need in their communities. They monitor all areas including human services, education, the environment, healthcare, the arts and economic development. Community Foundations can help educate your clients on issues important to them, and connect  your clients with local agencies and programs that make a difference in areas they care about most.


Iowa Community Foundations connect people who care with causes that matter - For the long Term.

Your client's gift to a community foundation supports community leadership. Community Foundations invest in the long term and foster the development of new organizations and programs and support those causes that are already making a difference. Iowa Community Foundations act as a catalyst in their communities bringing diverse interests and individuals, business, and organizations together to address issues that matter to us all.


Our business is building community.

Standards of Practice

Community Foundations in Iowa should continuously seek the highest standards in terms of legal, ethical and effective practices. Iowa Community Foundations involved and highlighted within this website either have been confirmed in compliance with the National Standards for US Community Foundations and/or recognized by the State of Iowa as an Endow Iowa Qualified Community Foundation; there are specific difference which are outlined below. 


We encourage you to expect the highest standards from charitable organizations, and Iowa Community Foundations remain committed to exceeding your expectations.  Please be sure to ask your local community foundation which set/s of standards they or their host community foundation meet.


National Standards for US community foundations 

The National Standards for US Community Foundations were established by the Council on Foundations in Washington, D.C. Community foundations that are confirmed in compliance with the National Standards demonstrate excellence in important areas including client service, fiscal accountability, grantmaking and community leadership. Intended both as a blueprint for internal organizational development and as a tangible set of benchmarks for external assessment of performance, the National Standards address such areas as governance; resource development; stewardship and accountability; grantmaking and community leadership; donor relations; and communications.  To learn more about meeting the National Standards for US Community Foundations, please visit the Community Foundation National Standards Board  website. 


Iowa has 17 community foundations (most serving as a "host foundations" for smaller, often county affiliated community foundations) that have been confirmed in compliance by the National Standards for US Community Foundations; this shows their connection to a growing and dynamic movement to strengthen the effectiveness of the community foundation field.


Iowa Community Foundations Confirmed in Compliance with the National Standards for US Community Foundations can be found here and are recognized with the National Standards seal. 


tax benefits

Iowa Community Foundations offer maximum tax benefits- including a possible Endow Iowa Tax Credit; we can work with you and/or your clients to create specialized charitable instruments tailored to estate and financial plans.


Your local community foundation can share more information about the benefits of working with them.  To locate the community foundation in your area and identify a contact person, please check out this map