Member Spotlight: The Community Foundation of Frederick County

CFCC member spotlight
For more than three decades, The Community Foundation of Frederick County has been working to build a stronger, more vibrant community not only for today but for the future. In addition to being a long-time member of Maryland Nonprofits, the Community Foundation works closely with donors and nonprofits in Frederick County, and we wanted to take a moment to celebrate the amazing work that they’ve been doing in their community.

With $78 million in grants and scholarships invested into Frederick County since 1986, the Community Foundation has helped strengthen its community by translating simple good intentions into powerful acts of philanthropy that emphasize providing long-term solutions for immediate and future needs.

Moreover, the Community Foundation is constantly working to maximize the power of philanthropy. They have spent the past year conducting research and stakeholder interviews and gathering data, all of which will help inform a new strategic plan for the coming years. They have also created a robust Data Visualization Tool based on their last human needs assessment that provides a common set of core facts for everyone in Frederick County to reference in discussions about human needs, and they recently hosted an event to show the community how to use the data to tell stories and build a case for support.

“The Community Foundation of Frederick County partners with Maryland Nonprofits each year to conduct program evaluation training for area nonprofits. The training is our way of offering top-notch training locally in a subject area that helps our nonprofits tell their stories through data and outcomes.”

The Community Foundation of Frederick County is dedicated to connecting people who care with causes that matter to enrich the quality of life in Frederick County now and for future generations.
The Community Foundation has guided thousands of generous Frederick County citizens in creating funds that capture their unique visions or contributing to existing funds that closely match their charitable intentions. These funds provide scholarships to students pursuing their educational dreams, and grants to area nonprofits.

The Community Foundation of Frederick County was founded in 1986 and in 1990 the organization saw its first formalized grantmaking process, funding 14 grants. In July 1995, Elizabeth Y. Day became the Executive Director and serves as the president and CEO today. The organization has grown to a staff of 15 and last year funded $5.1 million in grants and $1.8 million in scholarships.

Impact & Initiatives:
In fiscal year 2021, the Community Foundation distributed $5.1 million in grants to hundreds of nonprofits serving in the areas of health and human services, youth programs, historic preservation, basic human needs, the arts, elder care, animal well-being, the environment, and much more. Scholarships, totaling $1.8 million, helped 392 students with their post-secondary education. All of this was made possible by the 1,838 donors who contributed 3,479 gifts to one or more of the Community Foundation’s 750 component funds, with most gifts going to our existing endowment that spends five percent of the annual market value.

The Forever Frederick County Fund
What will be the most pressing needs as a community in ten, twenty, fifty years and more? Homelessness, substance use disorder, parents who can’t feed their children, lack of public education? It’s impossible to know, yet preparedness is key. In June 2019, the Community Foundation launched its unrestricted endowment campaign to establish a flexible and sizeable endowment fund to prepare for the future and, last year, the Community Foundation exceeded its $20 million fundraising goal for the endowment. Grants from the Forever Frederick County Fund will help address the most pressing issues in the community now, and as they evolve and change over time. The Forever Frederick County Fund will help ensure that solutions can be achieved quickly.

The COVID-19 Emergency Relief Fund
The COVID-19 Emergency Relief Fund, a component fund of the Community Foundation, was established in 2020 to provide grants to nonprofits in support of emergency relief services. During FY2021, the Community Foundation provided support to multiple nonprofits, including The Religious Coalition for Emergency Human Needs to help prevent evictions for households impacted by COVID-19, grants to Frederick Rescue Mission with its food coordination efforts for Frederick County, and assistance for COVID testing for staff at Montevue Assisted Living and Citizens Care and Rehabilitation Center of Frederick.


Learn more about the Community Foundation of Frederick County here.

Interested in applying for a grant? View details and available opportunities here.


Kate moved to Baltimore in 2017 to pursue her B.A. in Sociology at Johns Hopkins University. Kate has worked with a variety of nonprofits in Baltimore, including Thread and Fusion Partnerships. She lives in Baltimore City and keeps busy reading and exploring the city.