The Community Foundation for the National Capital Region facilitates individual and organizational giving in the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area in an effort to build philanthropic capital that enhances quality of life in the region. As part of this goal, CFNCR strengthens D.C.-area nonprofits by funding projects and experiments that offer new solutions to the community's needs.
Purpose of Site:
To disseminate information about the foundation's mission, background, and current programs and events. The site also provides information on giving opportunities and resources for grantseekers.
Founded in 1973, CFNCR received its first big funding boost five years later when Exxon Corporation (now ExxonMobil) joined several other major companies in opening funds at the foundation. CFNCR made its first grant distributions in 1979. In 1989, the foundation became the fiscal and administrative agent of the Barbara Bush Foundation for Family Literacy, which was started that year to fund programs building family literacy nationwide. CFNCR's growth took off in the 1990s: From 1992 to 1997, under the direction of chairman R. Robert Linowes, the foundation's assets increased from $10 million to $50 million. The next year, the organization's assets doubled to reach $100 million in time for its twenty-fifth anniversary.
The foundation's home pageoffers visitors a blueprint of the site. A "what's new" section is featured in the middle of the page with links to the site's new items. Links to the main sections of the site — About Us, Giving, Professional Advisors, Grants & Programs, Regional Affiliates, and News & Events — are arranged along the left side. A user moving a mouse over one of those links can see the subsections of a particular area. For example, if the mouse is on "About Us," links to the foundation's mission statement, trustees, staff directory, publications, and contact page appear on the home page, and users can easily move to a specific page.
The resources for donors are extensive on CFNCR's Web site and cover everything from setting up a fund with the foundation to the tax benefits available to donors. The page entitled "How to Give to the Community Foundation" provides a flow chart and detailed step-by-step instructions for setting up a donor-advised fund. Prospective donors can research the types of funds that can be created, including ones that target specific areas of interest such as education or specific nonprofits in the D.C. area. Users who are ready to take the plunge can download the paperwork for creating funds in Microsoft Word format, which can be easily e-mailed or faxed to the foundation. The site also offers a similar resource for attorneys, accountants, brokers, financial consultants, and other professionals who are planning charitable tax planning strategies for their clients. In addition, a panel on the right side of Web pages throughout the site lists frequently asked questions relevant to the subject matter on a particular page, providing users with helpful information on the topic they are researching.
For grantseekers, CFNCR provides detailed information on how to apply for grants from its various funds. Since the requirements differ for many of the funds that the foundation manages, the site offers application information specific to each fund. CFNCR also has provided a feedback form on its site that allows grantseekers to indicate their interest and ask for more information.