The Women's Fund of the Oshkosh Area Community Foundation was established in 1998 to create measurable social change in the lives of women in Winnebago County, Wisconsin.
Here are some frequently asked questions about the Women's Fund:
What is a Women's Fund?
The Women's Fund of the Oshkosh Area Community Foundation is a partnership of donors, grantees, and volunteers working to advance the status of women of all ages in Winnebago County, Wisconsin. Through grantmaking and fund development, the Women's Fund strives to create measurable social change in the areas of economic self-sufficiency, health and well-being, and safety from abuse and crime. All funds under the Women's Fund umbrella are administered by the Oshkosh Area Community Foundation.
Is the Women's Fund separate from the Community Foundation?
The Women's Fund is a Donor Advised Fund within the Oshkosh Area Community Foundation. Its purpose is to create and develop a permanent endowment that will generate annual income to help address compelling issues affecting women in our community.
Is the Women's Fund one-of-a-kind?
The Women's Fund of the Oshkosh Area Community Foundation is part of a fast-growing national movement. In recent years, more than 105 women-oriented funds have been created, representing assets of more than $96 million and grants of almost $13 million. Currently in Wisconsin, there are Women's Funds in Appleton, Fond du Lac, Green Bay, La Crosse, Madison and Milwaukee.
Why target programs for women?
Our goal is to increase the financial resources available for programs specifically targeted to women in our community. Despite the dramatic advancement of women in recent decades, women are still far more likely than men to be homeless, live in poverty, be unemployed or under-employed, face violence, or suffer with inadequate housing and healthcare. We work to increase literacy, prevent violence, promote economic self-sufficiency, improve physical and emotional health, teach leadership and encourage personal growth for women of all ages.
What's different about this fund?
The Women's Fund is a charitable fund, not a social club or an organization. It supports causes of interest to women through grantmaking and fund development. Our other roles include:
- Empowering women to make a difference.
- Benefiting the entire community through the power of women's philanthropy (pooling charitable dollars that may otherwise go untapped).
- Encouraging new philanthropists to become involved in our community.
- Exemplifying the long-term impact that giving back can have on our community.
Where does the Women's Fund get its funds?
The Women's Fund receives donations from individuals, families and business. These gifts and bequests make up the permanent endowment of the Women's Fund, from which income (or interest generated) is used to make grants. Since it's an endowment, a contribution to the Women's Fund is a gift that will continue to give—forever. Operational funds are raised from other foundations, corporations and special events. Each kind of gift helps the Women's Fund do the important work of convening people who care about women's issues, mobilizing new donors and awarding grants.
Can't I give directly to an organization that serves women?
You can. However, a gift to the Women's Fund of the Oshkosh Area Community Foundation is a long-term gift that will continue to grow, year after year, enabling the Fund to support programs for women—forever. We encourage you to give to the causes you believe in. In addition, please consider giving to the Women's Fund.
What are the Women's Fund goals?
The Women's Fund is working to reach over $2 million in grants by 2016! We are well over the $1 million mark and have many exciting projects in the works that will propel us over that goal!