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GIFT VII – Matching Fund Grant Announcement


Contact Information:      Danka Klein: 
dklein@ucfoundationinc.org, phone: 765-458-7664 or 765-580-0962

January 7, 2019


The Union County Foundation, Inc. has received a grant of $500,000 as part of Lilly Endowment Inc.’s seventh phase of its Giving Indiana Funds for Tomorrow (GIFT) initiative.   With GIFT VII, Lilly Endowment is making up to $125 million available to help Indiana community foundations strengthen the towns, cities and counties they serve.

Union County Foundation can use this matching fund grant to build our financial assets and support our charitable activities. Two-thirds of the matching fund grant were designated to support the growth of Union County Foundation’s unrestricted endowments also known as the Community Impact Funds, which over time will provide flexibility to help the foundation to meet community needs.  Lilly Endowment will provide $2 for every $1 contributed to Union County Foundation’s unrestricted endowments during the matching period, October 1, 2018, through December 31, 2020. 

Union County Foundation chose to designate one-third of the matching fund grant to support foundation’s other existing and new charitable funds and endowments.  Lilly Endowment will provide 50 cents for every $1 that Union County Foundation raises during the matching period for these funds.

“Our goal is to meet this generous match of $500,000 from Lilly Endowment to strengthen support for our community. The unrestricted endowments/Community Impact Funds give us the ability to respond to both needs and opportunities in Union County,” said Danka Klein, Executive Director of the Union County Foundation.

According to Board President Dic Worcester, “This is a great opportunity to grow our unrestricted endowments – where every donation gets tripled. Whether $10 or thousands, every donation adds together to create benefits now and in the future.”

The Union County Foundation is a publicly supported philanthropic institution governed by a volunteer board of local citizens. The foundation manages contributions donated by individuals, businesses and corporations as a permanent community endowment. Distributions from these funds are given back to the community in the form of grants to nonprofit organizations and scholarships to residents. To date, more than $4.5 million in grants and scholarships has been awarded to enrich the lives of the residents of Union County.

The GIFT initiative is part of Lilly Endowment’s grantmaking to strengthen Indiana communities and has been a priority of Lilly Endowment since the first phase of GIFT in 1990.  The initiative’s primary aim is to help Indiana community foundations develop the philanthropic capacity to identify, prioritize and address local opportunities and challenges.   

To encourage the engagement of Union County Foundation’s board of directors, the Endowment also will award an additional $100,000 unrestricted grant if the foundation achieves 100 percent financial support from our board members during the period January 1, 2019, through June 30, 2020.    

Starting in 2019, Union County Foundation will have the opportunity to apply for more funds through GIFT VII’s community leadership grants.  This component includes both planning and implementation grants, which are available to help the foundation deepen its understanding of the challenges and opportunities facing its community; convene key local stakeholders and explore how it can effectively play a leadership role in implementing initiatives and strategies that enhance the quality of life in Union County.

Lilly Endowment Inc. is an Indianapolis-based private philanthropic foundation created in 1937 by three members of the Lilly family – J.K. Lilly Sr. and sons J.K. Jr. and Eli – through gifts of stock in their pharmaceutical business, Eli Lilly & Company.  The Endowment exists to support causes of community development, education and religion.  Lilly Endowment’s community development grantmaking is designed to support efforts that enhance the quality of life in Indianapolis and Indiana.