P: 815.748.5383     F: 815.748.5873
Serving DeKalb County, IL Since 1993

How to Start a Fund

Why Start a Fund at the Community Foundation?

Before you get to the "how", learn more about the "why". Together, with our donors and community, we are making a positive impact in DeKalb County. See for yourself!

How to Start a Fund

Decide When to Give

You can create your fund now, establish it in your will, or generate a trust arrangement that benefits your family as well as charity.

Decide What to Give

Almost any kind of asset can be used to start your fund, such as cash, publicly traded securities, closely held stock, real estate, life insurance, and tangible personal property.

Choose the Name for Your Fund

Most of our funds are named for the donor or the donor’s family, or as a memorial to someone special.

Choose a Type of Fund

We offer a variety of funds that are flexible to meet our donors’ different charitable interests:

  • Community Impact Funds (Undesignated Funds)
    Community impact funds offer the broadest giving option, allowing grants to be made to wherever our board and professional staff determines our community’s needs are the greatest.
  • Field of Interest Funds
    These funds create grants that meet needs in a particular field or geographic area that is of interest to you.
  • Donor Advised Funds
    Donor advised funds enable you to recommend specific eligible organizations to receive grants.
  • Scholarship Funds
    Scholarship funds enable students to pursue academic goals. You may define guidelines for candidacy, the advisory committee, the school and the field of study.
  • Designated Funds
    These funds let you support specific organizations while we make sure that grants to these groups remain relevant over time and responsive to changing circumstances.
  • Agency Funds (Organizational Endowment Funds)
    Agency funds are established by nonprofit organizations to provide income to them. We handle all administrative and investment responsibilities, freeing the organization to pursue its charitable mission.

For questions or additional information on how to start a fund at the DeKalb County Community Foundation, please contact Executive Director Dan Templin at 815-748-5383 or dan@dekalbccf.org.


Endowed funds at the DeKalb County Community Foundation are charitable funds that exist forever. These funds are a great vehicle for donors to leave their legacy and support the causes and organizations of their choice through grants. Over time, investment performance grows the fund while grant distributions are made that make a real difference to the quality of life in our community. Let us partner with you to fulfill your philanthropic dreams!

$10,000 initial contribution - Estimates over 10 years

$10,000 initial contribution - Estimates over 50 years