You have the privilege of recommending grants to sectarian and nonsectarian organizations subject to review of each organization’s tax-exempt charitable status and approval by our Board of Trustees.
You may recommend as many grants as you wish at no extra charge, although the amount of each grant must not be less than the minimum established for your fund type (i.e., $36 for Children’s Giving Funds, Bar/Bat Mitzvah Funds and NextGen Giving Funds; $36 for all other funds when recommending online grants to charities that do not require research; in all other cases, $100 minimum). Both income and principal are available for grant distribution.
You may recommend grants from your fund by logging into our secure website or by sending us a signed grant recommendation form.
View a sample Grant Letter
View an anonymous Grant Letter
While donor advised funds can be used to support a wide range of charitable purposes, there are certain guidelines and limits set forth by the IRS. Donor advised funds are not permitted to fulfill enforceable (legally binding) pledges of financial support on behalf of its donors/recommenders or any third party. Donor advised funds cannot be used to pay for galas and events. For more information on pledges and events, please click on the links provided for detailed information on Grant-making Procedures.
2. Grant Review: Each organization recommended by you is reviewed by our staff to verify its tax-exempt status and official mailing address. All grants issued by the Jewish Communal Fund must be made to organizations that qualify as tax-exempt under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code and that are classifed as either public charities as described in Sections 509(a)(1), (a)(2), or (a)(3) of the Code, private operating foundations as described in Section 4942(j)(3) of the Code, or government instrumentalities exempt under Section 501(c)(1) of the Internal Revenue Code. This process typically takes 1 – 4 days, although during high volume periods processing may take slightly longer.
3. Grant Letters and Checks: You may indicate in your grant recommendation the person(s) whom the organization may thank for recommending the grant. If you wish the organization to acknowledge a third party, this information will be included in the letter to the organization. The letter will be attached to the check and will display the JCF logo and the name of your fund, unless you request anonymity.
Grant recommendations are processed by staff members who verify that all grant-making requirements have been met. Grant checks are mailed to qualified grantee organizations typically within 5 business days of receipt of your recommendation, although during high volume periods processing may take slightly longer. Grant processing may require more time in the event additional review is required to determine a recommended organization’s tax-exempt status or classification, or if clarification is needed with respect to your recommended purpose. The kind of situations that will often prompt a call to you, or to the recommended organization, before a grant recommendation can be approved include: reference to an event, membership, individual, or pledge without clarifying language (e.g., “no tickets,” “declining benefits,” “in honor of,” “not a legally binding pledge”).
In the event there is a delay processing your grant recommendation, a member of our staff will notify you generally within 7 business days of receipt of your grant recommendation and keep you apprised of continuing efforts to obtain the necessary information to approve the grant.
The Pension Protection Act (PPA) of 2006 imposed new requirements on grants to supporting organizations from donor advised funds.
Generally, a supporting organization is a 501(c)(3) public charity that operates to support another related public charity. Common examples include alumni associations, hospital foundations and “Friends of” organizations.
In cases where a grant is recommended to a supporting organization, the Jewish Communal Fund must now obtain additional information as part of our due diligence before approving the grant. Under the PPA, we are not permitted to make grants to an organization that is a non-functionally integrated type III supporting organization. If an organization is a type I or type II supporting organization, the donor will be required to sign an additional certification and the grantee will be asked to provide an opinion of counsel.
Please be advised that grants to all supporting organizations necessitate an increase in research and due diligence in order to ensure compliance under the PPA and will increase the processing time.
If you have questions about supporting organizations, please contact our Vice President of Grants Administration, Melanie Marchfeld.