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Huntsville considering creating a community fund for the Town
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Huntsville considering creating a community fund for the Town

Posted: 2024-04-01 13:06:27 By: thebay

Huntsville General Committee agreed to consider a community fund for the Town, in the March 27th meeting.

Lynn DeCaro, of the Muskoka Community Foundation (MCF) approached the Committee about setting up a fund for Huntsville.

She advised that the MCF is a network of foundations that work on behalf of rural communities to manage donor funds.

According to DeCaro the goal of community funds is that the money stays within the municipality of the donor.

She indicated that some of the benefits of creating a fund with the MCF would include less delegations from charities requesting funds and the time to consider them in annual budgets.

She added, “It removes possible bias in funding decisions and remain [at] arm’s length of Council and municipal staff because the fund has its own grant review committee.”

Funding source options include annual, one time, or regular contributions to the fund.

Grants for the funds are geared to community needs, added DeCaro, which can focus on specific areas, such as food, education, health, environment, housing, and which a municipal representative would work with the MCF on.

DeCaro said, “The MCF manages all aspects of the Community Fund,” which includes financially and grant related, such as applications and awards.

Councillor, Scott Morrison, inquired about whether there was opportunity for community wellness grants.

DeCaro advised that there are, and that the MCF ensures that organizations being supported are in good standing with the CRA, in addition to having a good reputation within the community.

Mayor, Nancy Alcock, inquired about what happens if a donor wants to contribute specifically to something.

DeCaro indicated that they could use an “endowed funding model…built to be sustainable and carry on.” She added they could also create a flow through fund, “we would encourage that donor to perhaps contribute to the general community fund as well but could take a portion of a gift and flow through specific projects.”

Alcock replied, “It sounds like the United Way concept… You give to the United Way and then they are all the granting committees.”

The Committee agreed to consider a fund for the Town and directed staff to investigate it further and report back with the findings.