The Straits Area Community Foundation (SACF) was created by the communities of Cheboygan County and Mackinaw City for the long-term benefit of those communities. It is a charitable organization that is dedicated to making it as easy as possible for those who want to make lasting contributions to their community to do so. By wisely investing donated funds, SACF is able to increase the impact of initial gifts and provide ongoing support to donor-designated community nonprofits and programs, scholarships for students and nonprofit grantees. SACF is an affiliate of the Community Foundation for Northeast Michigan.
The Community Foundation accepts and receives gifts for the community's endowment. It is the income from this endowment that is returned to the communities we serve each year in the form of grants. In essence, each contribution is a legacy to future generations because income is distributed year after year for generations to come.
The Straits Area Community Foundation is a granting organization that funds other nonprofits' programs and services through an application process.
SACF is a "collection" of permanent endowments designed to achieve our donors' individualized charitable goals through one simple vehicle.
The Community Foundation for Northeast Michigan (CFNEM), the lead foundation, serves the counties of Alcona, Alpena, Montmorency, and Presque Isle. However, in order to serve our neighboring counties that were not previously being served by a community foundation, CFNEM created three affiliates. They are: North Central Michigan Community Foundation (NCMCF), which serves Crawford, Ogemaw, and Oscoda Counties; Straits Area Community Foundation (SACF), which serves Cheboygan County and Mackinaw City; and Iosco County Community Foundation (ICCF), which serves all of Iosco County. All these assets together make up the Community Foundation for Northeast Michigan.
In general, contributions made to the Community Foundation are not spent -- they are invested for growth. Five percent of the fund's assets, averaged over 12 rolling quarters, are available for spending. As the corpus grows, so too does the amount available to spend or grant.
By agreement, both principal and income may be expended (also sometimes called a "principal and income fund"). A non-permanent fund, however, does not appreciate at the same rate as a permanent fund and the tax benefits are not as great.
The Community Foundation's assets, which include the assets of the lead foundation and each of the three affiliates, were approximately $37 million at the end of our 2015 fiscal year, September 30, 2015. Approximately $2 million of those assets are with the Straits Area Community Foundation.
The Community Foundation is invested through The Iles Group of Merrill Lynch.
An independent audit is conducted yearly, and the 2015 audit has been completed by the auditing firm of Boldrey, Senchuk, Rouleau, and Williams, CPA's, PC. The IRS Form 990, audited financial statements, and specific investment management details are available upon request.
501(c)(3) nonprofit organizations, and tax exempt schools, churches, and governmental entities.
The Community Foundation charges fees from its funds. The fees range from 1% to 2% of a fund's assets computed annually, but no less than $100 per year, per fund.
At the end of the 2015 fiscal year, September 30, 2015, the Community Foundation for Northeast Michigan had 460 funds, with new funds established on a regular basis. Currently there are 48 funds within the Straits Area Community Foundation.
No, we are a resource for them. We hold many of their endowment funds, work to develop their assets, and make grants to their institutions.
We derive our assets from many donors rather than one, have broad charitable purposes and a demographically diverse, non-compensated Board of Trustees. Because we are a public charity, we receive more favorable tax treatment, do not pay excise taxes on income, and have more flexibility in our operating ability.
Groups with a Common Purpose
Agency (nonprofit organization) Funds
Donor Designed Funds
Donor Advised Funds
Field of Interest Funds
Fund contributions become assets of the Community Foundation and, as such, are under the control of the Board of Trustees. The Community Foundation is organized for charitable purposes and should not be confused with a bank or an investment service. Fund distributions receive Board approval and, except in extraordinary circumstances, the principal of a permanently endowed fund is not invaded.
Management and investment of dollars
Annual financial reports to donors - semi-annually or quarterly upon request
Assistance with staffing of advisory committees
Handling all governmental reporting requirements
Facilitating the grants program and ensuring accountability
Acknowledging and receipting contributions
Fund stewardship and audit services
Providing planned giving expertise
Public relations and marketing initiatives
The Community Foundation for Northeast Michigan was established in 1974. In 1997, CFNEM added its three affiliate foundations including the Straits Area Community Foundation.
In addition to the hallmark functions of grantmaking, donor services, and community leadership, the Community Foundation is committed to building a stronger community through youth development. We take particular pride in our YAC (Youth Advisory Council) -- a youth advisory committee to the Board of Trustees. These young people, ranging in age from 12 to 21, represent all the school districts in our service area. They are committed to community service, philanthropy, and volunteerism.