Kristyne Gilbert’s grandma and dad were big gardeners. She remembers that they would talk about how, when they planted a tree, they may never sit in its shade or taste its fruit. But that was okay. They were caretakers of the land for generations to come.
Gilbert sees her role as Executive Director of Buchanan Center for the Arts (BCA) similarly. “I want to do whatever I can to make sure that whoever is here in the future has the tools they need to make the arts accessible in our region for generations to come.”
To do that, the BCA is working with Galesburg Community Foundation to build their endowment. Gifts made to the endowment fund are invested and grow over time. Each year, the BCA receives a percentage of the endowed fund’s value to support their work, while the rest stays invested and grows. As the fund grows, so does the amount the nonprofit can use toward its mission. “Endowments allow nonprofits to be more strategic and focus more on their work and less on raising new resources,“ says Sarah Grant, Galesburg Community Foundation Director of Development.
To give the BCA the opportunity to focus on building their endowment, the Community Foundation provided the nonprofit with a three-year grant and materials that the BCA can use to tell their story and promote their fund with donors. The Community Foundation is also bringing the BCA together with a cohort of other nonprofits who are also building their endowments so that they can share their experiences and learn from each other.
In addition to building their endowment, the BCA is also undertaking a capital campaign. “We are tight on space,” says Gilbert. “There’s a waiting list for classes and our theater productions in the gallery compete with the artwork on display. Our gallery is already booked years in advance and our permanent collection has outgrown its storage space.”
By renovating the second floor of their location on the square in downtown Monmouth, the BCA will add an additional gallery, second classroom, dedicated performing arts space, and storage for their permanent collection. “Building our endowment will support the additional resource needs of the expanded space, which in turn will allow us to fill the demand in our community for more opportunities in the arts.”
Gifts of any kind—from cash to securities to real estate to grain—can be made to support the BCA’s endowment. “Supporters of the BCA might also consider making a gift that will carry forward their generosity long after their lifetime through a planned estate gift,” says Grant.
Like the shade provided by the trees planted by Gilbert’s family, the BCA’s endowment will also provide for future generations. “With our endowment fund, we can make sure that the experiences our community has enjoyed at the Buchanan Center for the Arts will continue for the next generation.”
To make a gift toward the BCA endowment or other endowed funds at Galesburg Community Foundation, visit yourgcf.org/give. To learn more about endowments, contact Sarah Grant at firstname.lastname@example.org or 309.344.8898.