By Marcey Ciaccio, Interim Executive Director, The Community Foundation for McHenry County

The Community Foundation often highlights the variety of funds, scholarships and grants we oversee, since “Connecting people who care with causes that matter” is the reason we go to work each day.

However, one fund we don’t often talk about is “The Community Foundation for McHenry County Operating Fund,” which supports our daily operations and strengthens our ability to deliver vital philanthropic services. This fund fuels actions that grow a robust, local, charitable landscape. Services include:

Personalizing a fund: We provide a trusted home for fund management which simplifies processes for local philanthropists and their visions. For instance, Cary residents Dana and Greg Gliniecki of Cary came to us to bring Bernie’s Book Bank to McHenry County, so all children have the chance to build a personal library. As a result, 713,070 books have been distributed to 36 McHenry County schools and 12,313 students!

Building awareness: We help other nonprofits raise awareness as well as funds. We often collaborate with friends, such as Marengo Park District, McHenry County’s Police Social Work Division or the Arts & Culture Fund for Woodstock to develop communication materials, coordinate special events or provide educational opportunities.

Empowering budding nonprofits: The director of a newer charity recently told us how our support goes far beyond writing a check. While many worthy organizations have a clear vision, our staff spends hours guiding and supporting them, providing vital information to bring that vision to fruition.

Building a charitable town square: A rising tide lifts all ships. The Foundation and our onsite Philanthropy Center represents a truly collaborative gathering place where donors and nonprofits can gather, learn and uplift one another.

Innovating daily: Because most nonprofits need to focus their resources on their distinct mission, we do the research and build the programs, like GIVE360, that inspire and promote collaborative giving to benefit them all.

Simplifying complex donations: Donors and nonprofits often approach us because we facilitate a variety of donations—many that are unconventional. For example…

Introducing a New Path to Local Giving

Speaking of simplifying unconventional donations, The Community Foundation for McHenry County just launched a new option for giving: IRA Required Minimum Distribution (RMD).  Many people are surprised to learn The Community Foundation can facilitate diverse monetary gifts—life insurance, investment funds and now RMDs.  In some cases, the type and timing of these types of gift benefit both giver and receiver.

We recently celebrated our first IRA RMD gift from a generous donor to our operating fund!

Because an IRA Required Minimum Distribution (RMD) is a qualified charitable distribution gift, seniors, ages 72 and over, may opt to directly donate their IRA’s RMD instead of writing a check.

Possible benefits of gifting a qualified charitable distribution to The Community Foundation

  • May satisfy an annual RMD, which the IRS requires individuals aged 72 and older to withdraw from their IRA. Typically, RMDs are taxable income, which can impact a person’s tax bracket as well as Social Security income and Medicare benefits.
  • Reduces taxable income, even for those who don’t itemize deductions, which may help with Social Security income and Medicare benefits.
  • No taxes on direct transfers up to $100,000 from an IRA
  • Not subject to the deduction limits on charitable gifts
  • Keeps money in McHenry County

If all of this information seems overwhelming, that’s okay. The Community Foundation works closely with donors and even financial advisors, who can help clients understand how their RMD might impact their taxable income and benefits. Those wishing to reduce their tax burden while supporting local charities might consider this path.

Making a qualified charitable distribution The Community Foundation Operational Fund

Our door is open to all donors, including those who want to learn more about gifting their RMD. You can also browse our website thecfmc.org to peruse the many funds managed by The Community Foundation or even learn about establishing a new one.

If you have any questions about donating to our Operating Fund or another cause important to you, we would be happy to assist you. Just contact The Community Foundation for McHenry County at 815-338-4483 or contact your IRA plan administrator.