Donor CentralFacebookTwitter

Overview & Facts About The Community Foundation

The Community Foundation's offices are located at 70 Audubon Street in New Haven, CT

The Community Foundation for Greater New Haven is a philanthropic institution that was established in 1928. For 85 years, thousands of donors have built the community endowment by establishing permanent funds or making gifts to existing funds that distribute grants to nonprofit organizations. These donors, past and present, make their gifts to ensure that programs and causes that matter most to them will be supported today and forever.

The Community Foundation is among the oldest and largest of more than 700 community foundations in the United States and remains the largest grantmaker in a region of twenty-towns located in the heart of central Connecticut. The Community Foundation is recognized by the IRS as a 501(c)3 organization, and as such is exempt from federal income tax; donations are tax deductible to the fullest extent of the law.

Sign Up for Enews

Mission: To create positive and sustainable change in Greater New Haven by increasing the amount of and enhancing the impact of community philanthropy.

The Community Foundation for Greater New Haven is the community’s multi-purpose permanent charitable endowment.

We pursue our mission by:  
  • Inspiring people to get involved in local issues;
  • Providing leadership by mobilizing the community to address key local issues and by supporting others in their leadership roles;
  • Responding to community priorities through grant making and in other ways; 
  • Raising new charitable resources to address current community priorities and for permanent endowment;
  • Honoring the wishes of past donors and collaborating with current donors; and
  • Growing the community’s charitable endowments by managing the financial assets entrusted to us.
We are committed to doing our work in accordance with the following values: 
  • Integrity. The Foundation must have integrity in the eyes of the community.  The Foundation’s decisions must be transparent and understandable to the community and be made independent of self-interest or undue influence of others.
  • Diversity.  The Foundation must serve all of its diverse community.  The Foundation must support the priorities of, and seek and make decisions based on input from, diverse elements of the community.  Diverse elements of the community must feel comfortable working with The Foundation.
  • Vitality: The Foundation must be a vigorous and pro-active agent of change for donors, for community leaders and for the community-at-large.
  • Collaboration: The Foundation must work in support of and in partnership with others in the community and mobilize giving for the non-profit institutions in the community broadly rather than solely for itself.
  • Long-term vision: The Foundation must undertake longer-term efforts to address community issues.
  • Service: The Foundation must be of service to donors, non-profits, philanthropic leaders and the community as a whole.
  • Accountability: The Foundation must on an ongoing basis evaluate its work and the progress of the community broadly so as to hold itself accountable for the impact of its efforts.
  • Excellence: All of the Foundation’s work must meet the highest standards.
- Adopted by the Board  of Directors in 2005
Assets: The Community Foundation currently manages over $430 million in charitable assets. It uses a long-term asset allocation model to provide a predictable, increasing amount of revenue for grantmaking while maintaining the endowment’s purchasing power against the effects of inflation. 

Funds: Approximately 900 charitable funds established by individuals, families, nonprofit and for-profit businesses since 1928.

Grants made: The Community Foundation’s funds distributed approximately $22 million in grants in 2013 (including grants made by funds of its affiliate the Valley Community Foundation) - contributing to the missions of hundreds of nonprofits in Greater New Haven.

Local Communities Supported

  • Ansonia
  • Bethany
  • Branford
  • Cheshire
  • Derby
  • East Haven
  • Guilford
  • Hamden
  • Madison
  • Milford
  • New Haven
  • North Branford
  • North Haven
  • Orange
  • Oxford
  • Seymour
  • Shelton
  • Wallingford
  • West Haven
  • Woodbridge


The  original newspaper ad announcing the birth of The Foundation appeared in the New Haven Register in 1928. It reflects the founding members' vision that the institution become a vehicle to benefit the community, today and forever.

Osborne Day, a lawyer and bank executive in New Haven, was one of a small group that publicly launched The New Haven Foundation at a dinner in February 1928.

The group of 53 of the city’s most prominent citizens met in the President’s Room at Woolsey Hall. The evening’s guest speaker, New York Community Trust director Ralph Hays, explained the benefits of a community trust model to the audience of lawyers, bankers and educators.

The Foundation's Resolution and Declaration of Trust was adopted in 1927; eleven local banks accepted the Resolution and agreed to manage new funds established from that day forward. The Foundation received its first funds in September 1928 from the estate of Nettie J. Dayton.

          85th Anniversary Video

We Love our Nonprofits...
And Here's Why

              Our Community's Future...
What Inspires You?
          80th Anniversary Video
Our History and Impact
      The Community Fund for Women & Girls
Defines Women's Philanthropy Your Local 
Resource for Learning and Giving 

     Download The Foundation's 75th Anniversary Book

     Resolution and Declaration of Trust



more publications
Last updated 1/24/14

About Us

Nonprofit Management Resource Center