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Community Donors Help SCCF Reach $500,000 Match Goal

By JoAnna Ness, Mar 7 2019 06:35PM

Steuben County Community Foundation (SCCF) successfully completed Lilly Endowment Inc.’s Giving Indiana Funds for Tomorrow (GIFT) matching grant challenge. Thanks to generous donors who made gifts to SCCF’s unrestricted fund for grantmaking and responding to community needs, SCCF has received the full $500,000 matching grant from Lilly Endowment. With Lilly Endowment’s 2:1 match, SCCF has increased its current and future support for local nonprofits and community projects thanks to the almost $1 million of donations and grant dollars received since October 2018. Upon completion of the matching grant, SCCF will be moving on to the next phase of Lilly Endowment’s GIFT VII initiative. This will include a feasibility study to ensure future growth and success of SCCF’s supporting organization, Steuben County Fiber Network, as well as a number of local community conversations.

The Spirit of Community fund at SCCF helps a wide variety of causes in Steuben County. In 2018 alone, this fund helped improve the quality of early childcare providers, supported the restoration of local nature preserves, and helped dozens of nonprofits enhance their internal capacity to make a difference in the community. Completing this matching grant challenge means SCCF can continue to support nonprofits who provide crucial services to local residents and enhance quality of life, while also having the flexibility to respond to community needs that arise in the future.

“We are grateful for the support from Lilly Endowment Inc. and our local donors who are passionate about Steuben County and believe in SCCF’s mission. This is also a testament to the leadership of our board, including our outgoing board chair, Jim Burns, who has served SCCF for many years and has been instrumental to our growth,” shared Jennifer Danic, SCCF President and CEO.

“This matching grant will help move SCCF forward in grantmaking, and I look forward to seeing the next steps of SCCF as we work to meet the needs of Steuben County,” said Jim Burns, SCCF Board Chair.

Jim Burns has served on the SCCF board for more than nine years, and he will complete his term as Board Chair in June 2019. Jim also served on the Steuben County Fiber Network board and spent four years as the board chair. During this time, he led the rebranding from iMAN to the Steuben County Fiber Network and helped double its reach in the community. In his time with SCCF, the Community Foundation has successfully completed two GIFT matching grant initiatives, and assets available for community grantmaking have grown by more than half a million dollars.