Philanthropy Grows in Brooklyn: The Brooklyn Community Foundation History
In 1998, the Independence Community Bank created the Independence Community Foundation, a private foundation dedicated to serving low and moderate income residents in the neighborhoods in which the bank existed. The Foundation maintained a particular emphasis on Brooklyn, the Bank's home borough since 1850.
Independence Community Foundation (ICF) began with a gift of stock valued at more than $56 million. Diversifying and investing its assets, in 11 years, the Foundation distributed more than $70 million in grants and became the largest private foundation in Brooklyn. Approximately two-thirds of these grants were awarded to Brooklyn-serving programs, a ratio that fully honored the intentions of its founders.
The Bank -- the source of the Foundation's start-up funds and a partner on any number of initiatives – closed its doors in 2006. But the Foundation's work continued.
the Foundation's work with the Brooklyn nonprofit community continued to grow and deepen. Its leaders and staff observed an acute and growing need-- particularly during difficult economic times -- to focus more resources more intensively on the host of issues facing the network of Brooklyn organizations with which the Foundation works.
After extensive consultation and research, the ICF Board of Directors elected to transfer its entire endowment to create the Brooklyn Community Foundation, a public charity, and to raise additional funds to increase the pool of resources available to local nonprofits.
In October, 2009, the Brooklyn Community Foundation celebrated its official launch as the only community foundation dedicated exclusively to the people of Brooklyn.
Dedicated to improving the lives of people in Brooklyn by strengthening communities through local giving, grantmaking and community service,
Brooklyn Community Foundation encourages all who live in or care about Brooklyn to invest in its future.
And, thanks to the Independence Community Foundation's generosity and foresight, there are no administrative or fundraising costs to donor. Every dollar raised goes directly to Brooklyn nonprofits.
Join us, as we Do Good Right Here, in Brooklyn.