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About

Our Mission Statement

The Scranton Area Community Foundation is on a mission to enhance the quality of life for all people in Northeastern Pennsylvania through the development of organized philanthropy. A public 501c3 community foundation, the Scranton Area Community Foundation serves as a steward, a grantmaker, a charitable resource, and a catalyst for change.


The Scranton Area Community Foundation is on a mission to enhance the quality of life for all people in Northeastern Pennsylvania through the development of organized philanthropy. A public 501c3 community foundation, the Scranton Area Community Foundation serves as a steward, a grantmaker, a charitable resource, and a catalyst for change.


As a steward and grantmaker, the Scranton Area Community Foundation manages more than 200 charitable funds established by philanthropic individuals in our community, and has granted more than $18 million to assist the educational, human service, environmental, civic, and arts and cultural organizations in Northeastern Pennsylvania. The Scranton Area Community Foundation also manages assets of more than $31 million through two private foundations, the Northeastern Pennsylvania Health Care Foundation and the Robert H. Spitz Foundation.


As a catalyst for change, the Scranton Area Community Foundation leads numerous initiatives, including Women in Philanthropy, which empowers and transforms the lives of women and girls throughout the region; NEPA Moves, which brings together a council of community leaders who are focused on solving the transportation challenges across the region; and the Center for Community Leadership and Nonprofit Excellence, which serves the capacity building needs of the nonprofit community through seminars and training programs facilitated by highly-skilled, nationally-recognized professionals.


The Scranton Area Community Foundation celebrated 65 years of serving the community in 2019. To learn more about the Scranton Area Community Foundation or to learn how you can maximize your philanthropic impact in the community, please visit www.safdn.org.

The Foundation strives to carry out this mission as a:

Resource

For over 65 years the Foundation has been providing donors with a flexible, low cost, professionally managed mechanism to accomplish individual charitable goals. The Foundation provides a source for your charitable contributions that will affect the well-being of our community. Funds established today at the Scranton Area Community Foundation will provide an essential stream of income decades ahead to meet the needs of a changing community.


A PowerPoint presentation included in this section is an overview of the general programs and services of the Foundation and illustrates its flexibility in responding to the charitable wishes and intent of many donors in our community.


It is through the Foundation that donors may accomplish their philanthropy and help to create a permanent legacy which also provides for the present.


If we may be of assistance, please let us know.

Steward

As a trusted steward for your charitable contributions, the Foundation has adopted a total return policy in an effort to maintain or increase the true value of endowment and its distributions to the community now and in the future. By utilizing a total return policy more return will come from capital appreciation rather than only current income of permanent funds.


Each year the Board of Governors and its Investment Committee establishes a spending percentage of its asset base. This amount may be more or less than actual income from dividends and interest. A total return policy means that interest, dividends and capital appreciation are considered as a single amount in the fund.


The spending rate holds spending in check through lucrative years, and enables spending in less productive years. Thus, donors funds are being managed to provide a balance between current and future community needs and opportunities. Investment decisions can be based on flexible long-term strategies which are not subject to sudden changes in interest rates or market value. Grant recipients and the community will be able to count on funds from their community foundation which will be made available for distribution based not only on changes in current investment income.


For more information, read our Statement of Investment Policy.

Grantmaker

Today the Scranton Area Community Foundation holds and manages a variety of funds from individuals, organizations, and corporations. Through these gifts, the Foundation responds to community needs and opportunities with grants in such diverse fields as health, education, arts, environment, human services, and civic affairs.


The Scranton Area Community Foundation makes grants to foster good ideas which have the potential to strengthen our community and enrich the lives of the people of Scranton and Lackawanna County.


Organizations which serve the needs of residents in Lackawanna County are encouraged to keep the Foundation informed of their programs and services and to share their ideas about addressing community needs and opportunities.


In making grants, the Scranton Area Community Foundation seeks programs and projects which advance one or more of the following objectives:


• Facilitate cooperation and collaboration among people and organizations

• Support projects and people who demonstrate the opportunity for positive and significant change/results

• Improve the range and effectiveness of charitable programs and services in the community

• Take a well planned and timely approach to existing and emerging community issues


The application process begins with a Letter of Intent (LOI) submitted via email to cathyf@safdn.org. Letters of Intent may be submitted at any time. Applicants invited to submit a full application will be notified by SAF and assigned login credentials to access the online application through the SAF Website. For Grant Opportunities and Deadlines, click here.

Catalyst

We strive to be a community resource, as well as a catalyst for change and growth. We provide the channel for the people of the community to help one another and we endeavor to raise awareness, increase giving, and create a “Culture of Giving” within our community.


By providing leadership, encouraging philanthropy, and constructing permanent resources in our community, we are the mechanism for an improved life for the residents of Lackawanna County.


We work to strengthen local nonprofits in fundamental ways, by offering a variety of programs to help build their capacity and organizational structure.

Why We Do It

For the Community:


We are a local organization with deep roots in the community. We provide leadership, encouraging philanthropy, and build permanent resources to raise awareness and increase giving in our community.

For the Donors:


Over the years, grants of more than $18 million have been made to assist the educational, human service, environmental, civic, and arts & cultural organizations in our area. As the Foundation’s endowment continues to grow, there will be increased opportunity for positive impact on community issues through grant-making.

For the People:


Through the generous contributions of our donors we are able to to fund needed resources and support community services that benefit the people of Scranton and the surrounding communities in Northeastern Pennsylvania.

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