The New York Community Trust connects past, present, and future generous New Yorkers with vital nonprofits working to make a healthy, equitable, and thriving community for all.
A public charity, The Trust is a grantmaking foundation dedicated to improving the lives of residents of New York City and its suburbs. We bring together individuals, families, foundations, and businesses to build a better community and support nonprofits that make a difference. We apply knowledge, creativity, and resources to the most challenging issues in an effort to ensure meaningful opportunities and a better quality of life for all New Yorkers, today and tomorrow.
Since 1924, The New York Community Trust has helped make our region a better place for all: Young and old, newcomers and life-long residents. Our work is made possible through the enduring generosity of donors—from teachers and taxi drivers to Rockefellers. Nearly a century after we were founded, The Trust continues to produce a signature brand of philanthropy that is patient, strategic, and effective.
Our diverse mix of professionals are experts in philanthropy, investment, and grantmaking. They are committed to helping donors take their vision for New York and transform it into a long-term plan to change the city for the better.
Twelve dedicated New Yorkers—selected for their judgment, integrity, and understanding of philanthropic needs—serve as our board. Six are nominated by civic authorities: the Mayor of New York City, the Chief Judge of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit, the chairmen of Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts and the Partnership for New York City, and the presidents of the City’s Bar Association and the New York Academy of Medicine.
Our financial statements are available. Click button below. If you would like copies or have any questions about our work, contact The Trust.
Philanthropy is most effective done locally. That’s why we created divisions in Westchester and Long Island. They are close to the donors in their communities, steeped in the most important issues, and overseen by boards of committed civic leaders. They work in many areas, from clean water to affordable housing, from job training to afterschool arts programs.
Community foundations such as ours exist to make it easy for people to be philanthropists, and to build an endowment to help meet changing needs over time.
The first community foundation was started in 1914 by a Cleveland banker who felt the practices of the day were needlessly eroding charitable funds. It was expensive to administer charitable trusts in banks, which knew more about investing money than giving it away. And when charitable funds had outlasted their purposes, it was expensive to go to court to make the changes needed for the funds to stay useful.
Today, there are more than 700 community foundations in all 50 states. Some continue to use the original trust model and others are organized as charitable corporations. In addition to building a permanent endowment through wills and bequests, community foundations today offer services to donors during their lifetimes.
What is commonly known as The New York Community Trust is actually two entities: The first, The New York Community Trust, is an unincorporated association of charitable trusts. Each component fund is held in trust by one of our approved bank trustees which has adopted “The Resolution and Declaration of Trust creating The New York Community Trust” (the R&D).
The second, Community Funds, Inc., is a New York State not-for-profit corporation. A fund established in Community Funds does not have a trustee. Charitable funds within Community Funds are invested by money managers retained and overseen by our distinguished Investment Committee.
The two entities are both public charities and file a combined report with the IRS. Both exist for the same essential purpose: to ensure donors’ giving makes the greatest possible difference to their chosen causes.
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