Rules we Follow

Policies of Our Community Foundation

Transparency + Trust

Grand Rapids Community Foundation operates in compliance with the National Standards for Community Foundations as set forth by the Council on Foundations.The Community Foundation has voluntarily adopted numerous policies and procedures to further guarantee that how we conduct our business is not only legal, but ethical. We have written policies on records retention, whistleblower activity and conflict of interest. Additionally, we have volunteer committees that oversee our audit and investments

  • Grand Rapids Community Foundation collects and uses personal information such as: name, address, phone number, and email address when a donor voluntarily provides it to us. In addition, the Community Foundation keeps a secure record of each donor’s giving history. This information is kept on file for IRS purposes and is also used by the Development Department to analyze overall giving patterns in order to make more accurate budget projections.

    Grand Rapids Community Foundation does NOT sell, trade, or share its donor list with any other organization. If you have a change in your donor information, please contact us at (616) 454-1751 or email us at grfound@grfoundation.org

    • The Grand Rapids Community Foundation strives to maintain the highest ethical standards in all policies, procedures and programs and to avoid any conflicts of interest. We recognize, however, that volunteers and employees are involved and play an active and vital role in the community. From time to time, potential conflicts of interest may arise. It is the Community Foundation’s policy to deal with each conflict of interest in as open and appropriate a way as possible.
    • A conflict of interest is considered an activity or interest that may cause bias. Any trustee, officer, member of a committee with board delegated powers, or employee who has a direct or indirect financial interest or is affiliated with an organization seeking to request a grant from the Community Foundation could have a conflict of interest.
    • This could include any position held presently or in the recent past, investment in any business, or any other avocational activity that may result in a possible impartial opinion.
    • Annually, all volunteers and employees will be requested to complete a Conflict of Interest Disclosure Statement identifying any positions held by self or any immediate family member (parent, spouse, or child) and affiliations with any organization.
  • As long-term investors, entrusted to grow the community’s endowment in perpetuity, Grand Rapids Community Foundation believes the following issues are signifi cant factors in the allocation of its assets:

    • In order to achieve a rate of return that supports the spending policy while protecting the assets from inflation, the Community Foundation is willing to take some investment risk.
    • The Community Foundation believes that the most effective way to establish an appropriate risk level for the portfolio is through its asset allocation.
    • The Community Foundation has adopted a strategic, long-term asset allocation. Over time, the portfolio will remain invested in percentages that are fairly close to those called for in the strategic allocation.
    • The Community Foundation strongly believes in the long-term benefits of diversifying its portfolio into a number of different asset classes and investment strategies. Each asset class and strategy is carefully selected. The focus of the investment process is always on the overall portfolio.
    • Within each asset class, the Community Foundation seeks to earn the most efficient rate of return possible (after investment expenses). Investments will be well diversified by investment style and strategy. Diversification will increase the probability over a five year time period that the Community Foundation will achieve its investment goals and reduce volatility.  
  • Grand Rapids Community Foundation values organizations within our community that are committed to promoting the broad diversity and inclusion of our community. Through our grantmaking, we strive to partner with organizations that also embrace these beliefs and demonstrate them through their policies, practices, actions and impact. We seek grantees and partners that incorporate diversity and inclusion into their mission, governance board, staff, volunteers, vendors and constituents served.

    To receive a general grant from the Grand Rapids Community Foundation, the organization must affirm that throughout their organization:

    • No person is excluded from organizational services due to discriminatory reasons including age, disability, economic circumstance, race, ethnicity, gender, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, worldview, spiritual beliefs, marital status, national origin or veteran status.
    • No one is excluded from consideration for employment or volunteer participation, regardless of age, disability, economic circumstance, race, ethnicity, gender, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, worldview, spiritual beliefs, marital status, national origin or veteran status.
    • The organization strives to intentionally increase inclusive practices and incorporate diversity throughout its mission, governance board, staff, volunteers, vendors and constituents.

    Organizations that serve a specifically defined population in an effort to help populations overcome historic discrimination are not considered non-inclusive, or discriminatory. Organizations serving target populations per their mission, for example, girls, babies or older adults, would not be considered discriminatory. This policy applies to how an organization serves its specific target population as well as how it handles hiring and volunteer participation.

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