Explore the local impact of donor-advised funds at the Ventura Community Foundation
When the Thomas Fire struck Ventura County it was the largest fire ever recorded in California at the time. The fires impacted so many aspects of the community that VCCF knows intimately. Foundation staff quickly connected like-minded donors to pool resources for urgent needs. Because VCCF donors use their donor-advised funds for strategic long-term impact – as opposed to a simple charitable checking account – they were able to rapidly mobilize over $1 million in the first three weeks after the fire. When the CEO of VCCF heard that the National Search Dog & Rescue Foundation lost property in the fires and was going to have to relocate their rescue dogs out of state while the facility was rebuilt, she called several donor advisors and within minutes raised $67,000 to house and care for the rescue dogs locally. Just weeks later Ventura suffered severe mudslides and nine of the rescue dogs were deployed immediately to rescue trapped community members, saving numerous lives.
Dogs and Donors to the Rescue
Feeding the Future
The local food bank serves 74,000 people per month and delivers food to several hundred nonprofit organizations throughout the community weekly. Two years ago, the food bank’s leadership came to VCCF in the midst of a financial crisis. VCCF sprang into action and helped the food bank make important changes to build up the strength and sustainability of the organization. In a matter of weeks they hired a new CEO, reduced expenses by 40% and developed a comprehensive 18-month cash flow forecast. The community foundation’s leadership team spent many hours advising on analysis and strategy, and leveraged over $250,000 from donor-advised funds. The foundation’s donors continue to help support the food bank as it grows its impact in the community.