Every Person’s Foundation
By Kirby Tello
By: Kirby Tello Illustration by: Alexis Gillis
Founded in 1981, The
Coastal Bend Community Foundation (CBCF) was established to provide a vehicle
for individuals to make donations to charitable organizations within the seven-county
Coastal Bend area. Starting with an initial gift
of $150,000, the foundation has grown to over $84.3 million as of June
30, 2018. These funds allow CBCF to provide grants to local nonprofits and
post-secondary scholarships for local students. CBCF’s funding is unique
because it comes from countless donors who have supported the foundation over
the years. In a private foundation, one family or a small group of donors
typically generates funds. Therefore, CBCF is known as “every person’s
The 2008-2009 economic downturn severely impacted many nonprofit organizations. The recession birthed the creation of The Coastal Bend Day of Giving. CBCF joined forces with eight other funders to provide $150,000 in matching funds for a one-day, internet-based fundraising campaign. During Fall 2009, the first ever Coastal Bend Day of Giving raised $410,000 for 25 different nonprofits in a 24-hour period.
“Every year since, the event has grown, raising over $2.36 million in 2017,” Karen Selim explains. Selim is the President and CEO of the Coastal Bend Community Foundation. “One of the most exhilarating privileges is distributing the checks to the participating charities in early December,” she says. “Being able to see the thanksgiving and gratitude from these charities is unmatched.”
For the upcoming 10-year anniversary, The Coastal Bend Day of Giving will have the largest number of participating charities in the history of the event. Fifty charities will be seeking online donations for their causes and have their raised funds matched by CBCF. These organizations encompass foundations that support the arts, education, environment, human services, families and children, and almost any other charitable endeavor imaginable. Additionally, the largest amount of matching funds CBCF has to distribute has been raised for 2018 – over $875,000.
November 13th marks the 2018 Coastal Bend Day of Giving, and it is shaping up to be a memorable and record-breaking event for the 10-year anniversary. The CBCF team believes the growth they have seen this year will continue for years with donations given by individuals who want to help the community into the future. These individuals are the backbone for which grants and scholarships are made and ultimately provide support to the Coastal Bend.