The Community Foundation for Northeast Michigan (CFNEM) has been re-accredited with the nation’s highest standard for philanthropic excellence. National Standards for U.S. Community Foundations® establish legal, ethical, effective practices for community foundations everywhere. CFNEM serves as the lead foundation for three affiliate foundations, including the Straits Area Community Foundation, which serves Cheboygan County and Mackinaw City.
“Meeting the National Standards benchmarks is a rigorous, comprehensive process,” said Randy Royster, Chair of the Community Foundations National Standards Board. “This accreditation is a significant accomplishment that indicates the Community Foundation for Northeast Michigan demonstrates a commitment to transparency, quality, integrity and accountability as it carries out its mission.”
The National Standards for U.S. Community Foundations® program requires community foundations to document their policies for donor services, investments, grant making and administration. The program is designed to provide quality assurance to donors, as well as to their legal and financial advisors.
“This is critically important to our donors,” said Patrick Heraghty, Community Foundation Executive Director. “When people make a charitable bequest or establish a fund, they are putting their trust in us. They are counting on us to manage their investment wisely, honor their charitable wishes and, in some cases, provide lifetime income to a loved one. The National Standards accreditation says our house is in order.”
CFNEM works to meet critical community needs and support local causes, including education and scholarships, healthcare and nutrition, arts and culture, economic development, senior care, environmental stewardship, nonprofit capacity building and recreation. The Community Foundation offers a range of charitable funds, allowing donors to advance a cause, support an individual organization, provide flexible support for community needs or recommend individual grants. In addition to affirming the organization’s philanthropic services, the accreditation validates CFNEM’s grant making practices for the nonprofit community.
“Grant making is a lot like investing,” said Heraghty. “We need to assess risks, weigh potential gains, diversify assets, monitor performance and operate fairly. With our National Standards accreditation, you can be assured that we’re doing just that.” National Standards for U.S. Community Foundations® is the first program of its kind for charitable foundations in the United States.
Through philanthropic services, strategic investments and community leadership, the Community Foundation for Northeast Michigan helps people support the causes they care about, now and for generations to come. CFNEM is the lead foundation for three geographic affiliates: Iosco County Community Foundation, North Central Michigan Community Foundation and Straits Area Community Foundation. CFNEM and its affiliate foundations serve nine counties in Northeast Michigan.
The Community Foundations National Standards Board is a supporting organization of the Council on Foundations and is responsible for the quality, value and integrity of compliance with National Standards. For more information on the National Standards Board, visit its website at www.cfstandards.org.