Endowment Funds Success Stories

Endowment Fund Success Stories

A Legacy of Caring for Distressed Animals Supported by Lowell Humane Society Endowment Fund

Human Society FundBy preventing the mistreatment of animals, providing for their shelter, and advocating for animal welfare, the Lowell Humane Society strives to improve the quality of life for animals and people in Greater Lowell. Through the public services of animal adoption, pet ownership education programs, and public awareness efforts, the Lowell Humane Society has been caring for animals since 1873. It places nearly 1,300 animals with families each year.

The Lowell Humane Society receives no city, state, or federal funding to support its mission. Operating costs for the Humane Society to achieve its goals and care for distressed animals are over $1,300 a day. Through the support of generous donors, the Humane Society is able to support operations and a variety of programs, as well as care for surrendered animals. To help the Lowell Humane Society meet its goals and provide long-term support, an agency endowment fund was established at the GLCF.

GLCF Agency Endowment Funds can leverage the support of donors by creating a perpetual source of funding that grows over time. As Lowell Humane Society Executive Director Jill O’Connell states, “Building a foundation on which to grow and ensuring the future financial stability of our organization is of key importance. We are happy to be collaborating with the Greater Lowell Community Foundation and look forward to being a resource for this community for many years to come.”

To support the Lowell Humane Society’s Agency Endowment Fund or to learn more about creating your own fund, please call 978-970-1600.


Donor Advised Funds: Top of the Hill Fund Focuses on Collective Impact

Top of the Hill FundAlex Chanler was introduced to the concept of social justice at a young age. As a child in a farming community in western New York, he learned that even in small close-knit communities there are neighbors in need of help. A wooden box in the back of the church labeled “poor box” led Alex, as a child, to ask himself how he could help his fellow man. This was one of Alex’s first experiences with giving–and with a collective response to community need.

Today Alex’s philosophy on giving is much more strategic than putting a few pennies in the poor box, but it’s influenced by the same approach–to create a collective impact. In establishing the Top of the Hill Fund at the GLCF, Alex and his wife Carole aim to support programs that inspire a collective response to community need.

The Chanlers have an affinity for nonprofit organizations that promote conservation and environmental protection. At the same time, these programs educate the community, mentor young people, and inspire adolescents to be active members in community-building efforts (and potentially become future philanthropists). The nonprofits supported by the Top of the Hill Fund are redeveloping neighborhoods, creating green spaces in areas of urban blight, and empowering residents to make small but lasting changes to the quality of life in their city.

Collective community efforts may not necessarily have immediate impact, but by engaging young people and focusing on programs that have multiple social outcomes, the Chanlers hope to improve the quality of life in the Merrimack Valley and address the inequalities in opportunity created by social status.

For more information on creating a Donor Advised Fund, like the Chanlers’ Top of the Hill Fund, please call 978-970-1600.


Thinking About the Future: Agency Endowment Funds and the Angkor Dance Troupe

TAngkor Dance Troupe Fundhe Angkor Dance Troupe is a nationally recognized performing arts organization that promotes Cambodian culture and enriches the lives of inner-city youth. The Angkor Dance Troupe strives to connect communities through preservation, education, and innovation. Since 1986, the Troupe has been teaching children and adolescents traditional Cambodian dance through experienced and accomplished instructors and mentors. The work of the Angkor Dance Troupe has been featured at the White House, during Boston’s First Night celebrations, and on WBUR, WGBH, and the Travel Channel.

To support and sustain its mission, the Angkor Dance Troupe is one of 35 local nonprofit organizations that have created an Agency Endowment Fund at the Greater Lowell Community Foundation. Agency Endowment Funds provide nonprofits with a permanent and reliable source of support that grows over time. Agency Endowment Funds are a great way to engage donors who want to make a gift that will continue to support a nonprofit and help provide a more stable financial future. As the troupe’s Executive Director Linda Sopheap Sou said, “We are so excited to be celebrating so many milestones with the Angkor Dance Troupe these past couple of years, and as we continue to grow, we look to grow our endowment as well. The GLCF endowment program and services has supported us in thinking about our future.”

To support the Angkor Dance Troupe’s Agency Endowment Fund or to learn more about creating your own fund, please call 978-970-1600.


The Ramos Lopez Fund Inspired by Childhood Examples of Goodwill

Ramos Lopez FundFerney Lopez and Geovanna Ramos, inspired by his father and her mother, want to give a helping hand to those in need. As a young boy, Ferney remembers when his father left for America. Ferney’s father worked with textiles in his native Colombia, becoming a machine operator for a textile company in Lowell after relocating. His father would send money back to Colombia while working to become a permanent resident, always saving for the day when he could bring his family to Lowell. Even while saving for these goals, Ferney’s father was a generous man: on trips to Colombia to visit family, he would always arrive with suitcases stuffed with food for the hungry in the surrounding villages.

Geovanna was likewise inspired by her mother’s example from an early age. The family didn’t have a lot, but Geovanna’s mother understood the significance of helping those who had less. Feeling that it was better to give than to receive, she donated part of her family’s income to charity every week, thereby supporting efforts to help community members in need-and teaching Geovanna the importance of giving. Among Geovanna’s earliest memories are those of her mother teaching her to be an instrument of love in the world.

These examples of benevolence remained with Ferney and Geovanna into adulthood. By establishing the Ramos Lopez Fund, they hope to memorialize their parents’ example: to have a large impact by showing a little kindness. In Ferney’s own words, “Everyone needs a helping hand at some point in their life; that’s why my wife and I started this fund.”

For more information on starting a donor advised fund,  please call 978-970-1600.


Girls Inc. Agency Endowment Fund Supports Inspired Programming for Local Girls 

Girls Inc FundThe mission of Girls Inc. is simple. They inspire all girls to be strong, smart, and bold through youth development programming that instills independence and personal responsibility. More than 450 girls from the Greater Lowell area benefit from outcome-based programming that promotes creativity, success, and learning. Both after-school and summer programs focus on building healthy relationships, college and career planning, and self-empowerment. Girls are able to develop skills in computer science, athletics, cooking, the arts, photography, and science and technology through a curriculum offered by instructors who are certified in child development and program design. The girls at Girls Inc. form friendships with peers from across the city that last a lifetime.

Like most nonprofit organizations, the leadership at Girls Inc. understood the importance of creating a lasting source of revenue to support the long-term goals and the mission of the organization. With these goals in mind, Girls Inc. established an agency endowment fund at the GLCF. “An endowment gift will nourish our community organization long after we’re all gone. Our Endowment Fund through GLCF will help ensure the long-term financial stability of Girls Inc. and I believe that this is a good investment in the future, for our community, and for us as individuals,” said Tracy Reilly-Ingersoll, Executive Director of Girls Inc. of Greater Lowell.Through donor support and the GLCF’s strategic investments, Girls Inc. now has one of the more substantial agency endowments at the GLCF. This endowment ensures that future generations of girls living in Lowell will benefit from Girls Inc.’s unique and relevant programs.

To support the Girls Inc. Agency Endowment Fund, or to learn more about creating your own fund, please call 978-970-1600.


The Sandi A. Wilson Youth Homelessness Endowment Fund

Sandi Wilson FundLocal resident Sandi A. Wilson, a 22-year employee of Enterprise Bank, has always put our community first in business and in charitable endeavors. To honor Sandi’s lifetime work as she retires this month, an endowed fund has been established by Enterprise Bank at the Greater Lowell Community Foundation. The immediate goal of the Sandi A. Wilson Youth Homelessness Endowment Fund will be to support short-term emergency housing, job skills, and education for homeless youth, thereby realizing Sandi’s dream of eliminating homelessness in the Merrimack Valley.

“What a wonderful image: providing shelter to young people who don’t feel safe at home or who are living on the streets, in parks, or abandoned buildings. It is hard for me to think about kids wandering around at night hungry, cold, and at risk,” Sandi said. The Sandi A. Wilson Youth Homelessness Endowment Fund will provide a critical first step to help youth living on the streets move towards a brighter future.

To support the Sandi A. Wilson Youth Homelessness Endowment Fund, please call 978-970-1600.