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The Community Foundation of Lorain County is dedicated to enriching the lives of those living and working in Lorain County, Ohio.

Lakeland Community Foundation Endowment Fund and Mini Grant Program

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What can a $250 grant do? It can buy kits for an afterschool STEM program, or packs of markers for an art therapy group for seniors. It can make grants to smaller agencies reaching out to meet the basic human needs of our neighbors using homeless shelters and food banks. We are "Helping Hands - Helping the Community," the tag line of Lakeland Community Foundation.

A generous gift of almost $1M from the Lakeland Community Foundation has established the Lakeland Community Foundation Endowment Fund, ensuring that significant investments like these will benefit Lorain County forever.

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Lakeland Community Foundation's gift has also created a new mini grant program, the first of its kind for the Community Foundation of Lorain County.

This new program will make grants of up to $250 available for nonprofits serving Lorain County. The mini grants will have a simple online application and will be awarded monthly. Interest earned from the assets of the Lakeland Community Foundation Endowment Fund supports the mini grant program, forever preserving the foundation's commitment to serve the broader community.

  • A new cycle opens on the first of each month and closes when all available dollars have been distributed.
  • Applications are awarded on a first come first serve basis to qualified organizations in good standing with the IRS and State of Ohio.  Organizations are encouraged to apply early.
  • Grant seekers can only receive funding once in a calendar year regardless of the number of submitted applications.

The Lakeland Community Foundation served primarily smaller nonprofit organizations, and by extension the greater community, with simple, rapidly responsive grants.

Since 1997, the foundation has awarded $2M in grants to over 200 local agencies.

The mission of Lakeland Community Foundation has been to support the cultural, charitable, educational, and scientific needs and activities of smaller nonprofit agencies and organizations of Greater Lorain County.

After 20 plus years of managing a locally operated foundation, Lakeland trustees concluded that the most effective vehicle to assure continuing the foundation's mission in perpetuity was to gift Lakeland assets to the Community Foundation of Lorain County.

Jack Elliott, Chairman of Lakeland Community Foundation, stated that he and the directors are, "grateful to Paul Balcom as the President and CEO after many years of service. With his support it has been a rewarding journey to help others. Our Trustees, President and CEO are confident with their decision to transfer Lakeland assets to Community Foundation of Lorain County, thus assuring the legacy of Lakeland, as well as carrying on the mission of Lakeland Community Foundation in perpetuity. 'Helping Hands-Helping the Community' is what it is all about."

"We thank Jack Elliott, Paul Balcom, and the board of the Lakeland Community Foundation for this generous support of our communities. We look forward to being a partner in securing its permanent legacy. It has long been the wish of the Community Foundation to offer simple, responsive grants and reduce barriers to funding. We look forward to seeding future opportunities with local partners just like Lakeland Community Foundation and working together in support of this great community we call home," said Cynthia H. Andrews, President and CEO of the Community Foundation of Lorain County.

By gifting its assets to an Endowment Fund at the Community Foundation of Lorain County, the legacy of Lakeland Community Foundation will live on. It lives on not only in name, but also in every opportunity to spark a future career in science, to relieve depression through art therapy, and to provide the power of helping hands - helping the community.

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We believe integrity is our greatest asset and value trust earned with fiscal responsibility, ethical stewardship, and transparency

We value excellence, which we define as providing the best service to all.

We exercise and promote leadership in meeting the changing needs and opportunities in the community.

We believe access to the CFLC should be fair, inclusive, and equitable.

We support innovative programs and act as a catalyst in identifying problems and sharing information with individuals, other foundations, and corporations.

We believe strategy, creativity, and adaptability are keys to thriving in a constantly changing world.

We believe in purposeful and collaborative community leadership.

We provide a permanent instrument for receiving and managing charitable gifts and bequests.

We value community, which we define as putting self aside for the betterment of the whole.

We believe the perpetuity of our efforts are linked to sustainable practices.

We value integrity, which we define as always doing the right thing.

We work to mobilize individuals to become active partners in building a better community.

Through our efforts, the Foundation seeks to improve the quality of life and to instill a greater sense of unity in Lorain County.