August 24, 2009
Last week, I provided my periodic FDO Professional statistical update. As always, the details included the current number of records in our Search Grantmakers database—98,346. I've also been meaning to provide a breakdown of these funders by grantmaker type. Here's that, plus some background information on two of these funder types:
- 73,726 independent foundations
- 12,084 public charities
- 7,791 operating foundations
- 2,569 company-sponsored foundations
- 1,296 corporate giving programs
- 880 community foundations
While you'll find records for all types of foundations at the Basic, Plus, and Premium subscription levels, profiles on public charities and corporate giving programs are found only at the Platinum and Professional tiers. These unique philanthropic vehicles represent a significant source of private institutional funding beyond that of the traditional foundation. Here are the Foundation Center's definitions for each:
In general, a public charity is an organization that is tax-exempt under code section 501(c)(3) and is classified by the IRS as a public charity and not a private foundation. Public charities generally derive their funding or support primarily from the general public in carrying out their social, educational, religious, or other charitable activities serving the common welfare. Some public charities engage in grantmaking activities, although most engage in direct service or other tax-exempt activities. Public charities are eligible for maximum income tax-deductible contributions from the public and are not subject to the same rules and restrictions as private foundations. Some are also referred to as "public foundations" or "publicly supported organizations" and might use the term "foundation" in their names. Only those public charities that engage in grantmaking are included in Foundation Directory Online.
A corporate giving program is a grantmaking program established and administered within a for-profit business organization. Corporate giving programs do not have a separate endowment and their annual grant totals are generally more directly related to current profits. They are not subject to the same reporting requirements as private foundations. Some companies make charitable contributions through both a corporate giving program and a company-sponsored foundation.
By the way, if you're wondering why I didn't list "family foundations" in the list above, it's because we group them together with independent foundations. But if you're searching specifically for this private foundation subset, try entering "family foundation" in the Keyword Search field on the Search Grantmakers Screen in conjunction with your other search criteria. The words "family foundation" will appear in the Additional Descriptor field of a grantmaker profile if a foundation has disclosed that its funds are derived from members of a single family.