Eagle Valley Community Foundation History
Eagle Valley Community Foundation (EVCF) began as a concept in 2013. Local residents involved in philanthropy, economic development and non-profit organization management led community engagement and discussion.
Eagle Valley Community Foundation (EVCF) was founded in the summer of 2015 after recognizing the need for a convening resource for in the Eagle River Valley and members of our community rose up in support.
Since our founding, EVCF has recruited over 34 Founding Families, 17 board and advisory members, two full time staff, and ten AmeriCorps VISTA volunteers. As our presence in the community grows, so does our impact.
As our breadth of work grows, we remain true to our focus on mental health, wellness, and early childhood education.
Building the Foundation
In 2014, OCF was capitalized with $25,000 to fund early legal expenses and build awareness of the idea. In the summer of 2015, OCF received the letter of determination qualifying the organization as a 501c3 charitable organization. Local residents interested in developing local, smaller, needs-oriented non-profit organizations quickly embraced the idea as members of the Advisory Board and as significant financial sponsors.
In September 2015, OCF was invited to partner with Advisory Board member Beth Slifer to sponsor a bi-annual gathering of Eagle County non-profit leaders. That gathering now includes over 100 community leaders and facilitates awareness and collaboration across organizations and people.
In December 2015, OCF was awarded a grant by the Corporation for National and Community Service to hire and manage a team of ten AmeriCorps VISTA members to work locally on issues of community poverty. Susie Davis, Director of Community Impact develops and manage this program. The OCF VISTA program is now engaged in addressing several areas of need including hunger, access to higher education, non-profit collaboration, healthy lifestyles for children and funding of emergency resources including food and shelter.
The original members of the Board of Directors include Chair Mike Rushmore, Bill Jensen, Seth Ehrlich and Jeremy Reitmann. In July 2016, the Board of Directors was expanded from four members to six members with the addition of Ron Davis and Chris Moffet.
In August 2016, OCF and the Western Colorado Community Foundation (WCCF) entered into a strategic partnership designed to increase local Eagle County philanthropy and generate financial resources for the OCF General Fund. The partnership allows local families to establish donor advised funds (DAF) that are managed by WCCF for the purpose of investing in nonprofit organizations. OCF receives 50% of the DAF management fees under this program Currently, there are approximately $250,000 in assets under management.
Several local non-profits are fighting poverty but are under-resourced. With funding from the Corporation for National and Community Service, EVCF established a scalable AmeriCorps VISTA program in Eagle County.
OCF’s AmeriCorps VISTA program places National Service within local non-profits to assist in capacity building measures.
EVCF managed seven VISTA staff as they increased access to healthy meals, built capacity for the local food pantry, developed structures for improved mental health, optimized scholarship programs and reduced the impact of environmental privilege in our valley.
We welcomed five new AmeriCorps VISTAs to the valley. Our current AmeriCorps VISTA members are hard at work serving within EVCF, the Eagle River Valley Food Bank, the Vail Valley Salvation Army and the Eagle River Watershed Council.
The AmeriCorps VISTA program is managed by EVCF and funded by a combination of discretionary and dedicated donations, a federal grant, and cost-sharing agreements with participating non-profit organizations.
Update: As of the end of 2019, the AmeriCorps program has been sunsetted.
Rebranding from Our Community Foundation to Eagle Valley Community Foundation.
YOU CAN MAKE A DIFFERENCE
If you’re interested in making more possible in the Eagle River Valley contact us at email@example.com or 970-855-2386