For more than 90 years, we have been called upon to serve in a significant leadership role in the five-county region of Central New York by addressing the community’s most pressing needs as they evolve, encouraging unprecedented innovation and collaboration, and helping generous residents support the causes they care about, now and in the future.

We are your community foundation.

Year Founded

1927

Total Assets

$393M

Grants Awarded

$20.7M

How We Get Results

By combining the experience and networks of multiple funders and community partners, we are able to tackle new problems that arise, such as the COVID-19 crisis; address issues that require new approaches, such as childhood lead poisoning; or help entire communities, such as adult learners. We channel more resources, expertise, and attention when we work together with our funder, academic, nonprofit and community member colleagues, making our efforts exponentially more effective.

Our work goes hand-in-hand with the work of local city and county governments. Our grants support new projects that government can then expand, help communicate program results to residents or provide the flexibility that leverages larger government resources. In addition, often systematic change can only be achieved through efforts to change or establish new public policies or programs. Our policy advocacy for lead poisoning reform in Syracuse promises to yield lasting improvements.

None of our grant objectives can be achieved without a vital nonprofit sector. Our capacity building efforts have included creating synergies in and between nonprofits to enhance program delivery, training mid-level managers for leadership positions, and improving data measurement to help organizations track their efforts.

Our grants and programs help nonprofits continuously improve the services they provide local residents. By supporting new approaches to education, employment, or human services—and rigorous assessments of the outcomes—our grants contribute to the collective knowledge of what works and what does not.

Impact Highlights

A Say Yes Scholar works on a laptop at Syracuse University

Racial Equity

By addressing structural inequities in Central New York, we‘ll move a step closer to ensuring opportunity for all.

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Safe Housing

Unsafe housing, especially where lead poisoning is involved, comes at a cost paid by all of us. The resulting health complications undermine community efforts to increase literacy rates, encourage high school completion and foster successful careers.

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Mother holds baby next to a pile of diapers

Poverty & Economic Development

While our community is facing some of the highest concentrated poverty rates in the nation, much is being done to bring opportunities and new hope to our region’s residents, paving new paths for the benefit of current and future generations.

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Nonprofit Effectiveness

Equipping the region’s nonprofits with the tools and know-how to manage healthy operations and impactful programs helps them to accomplish their missions and serve the community in the most effective way possible.

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Children listen in a reading circle at Earlville Library

Education & Opportunity

Access to a quality education is a foundational value that addresses numerous community challenges – from poverty and unemployment to kindergarten readiness and healthcare outcomes.

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Mercy Works

Crisis Response

When a crisis like the coronavirus pandemic hits, we are not going to do less as a community because of uncertainty; we are going to do more, because our neighbors need us.

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Community Investment Stories

Man and woman stand together
Stories February 12, 2024

Giving Perspectives: Susan & Michael Meath

The Community Foundation’s 5forCNY initiative, which invites community members to give back to the region ...

Linda Verni Williams
Stories November 15, 2023

Centered Giving: Linda Verni Williams

When Linda Verni Williams first opened the Oneida Lakes Arts & Heritage Center (“the center”) ...

Debbie & Harvey Kliman
Stories October 1, 2023

Amplified Giving: Debbie & Harvey Kliman

Despite two very different upbringings, Harvey and Debbie Kliman developed similar values around giving. Harvey, ...

Erie Canal
Stories June 23, 2023

Building Bridges of Opportunity

John Winter's legacy as a devoted father, philanthropist, and advocate for marginalized communities lives on. ...

Woman standing in front of statue
Publications May 2, 2023

Gwen Webber-Mcleod

Gwen's parents grew up in the Jim Crow South and met while studying at North ...

Headshot of Rhoda Sikes along with a photo of Onondaga Lake
Blogs February 21, 2023

A Lifetime Commitment to the Community: Rhoda Sikes

Even well after her tenure ended at Heman Street Elementary School, Rhoda Sike's passion for ...

Pamela Monaco sitting with her dog
Stories November 21, 2022

Giving With Energy & Heart: Pamela Kip Reisman Monaco

It was an “a-ha” moment for Pamela Kip Reisman Monaco when she read another woman’s ...

Angel Winfield and Lance Lyons stand in front of the Rev Theatre Company in Auburn
Publications November 21, 2022

Forging Pathways for the Future: Angela Winfield & Lance Lyons

Giving Voice Fall 2022: Donor Story

Man and woman stand together
Stories February 12, 2024

Giving Perspectives: Susan & Michael Meath

The Community Foundation’s 5forCNY initiative, which invites community members to give back to the region ...

Linda Verni Williams
Stories November 15, 2023

Centered Giving: Linda Verni Williams

When Linda Verni Williams first opened the Oneida Lakes Arts & Heritage Center (“the center”) ...

Debbie & Harvey Kliman
Stories October 1, 2023

Amplified Giving: Debbie & Harvey Kliman

Despite two very different upbringings, Harvey and Debbie Kliman developed similar values around giving. Harvey, ...

Erie Canal
Stories June 23, 2023

Building Bridges of Opportunity

John Winter's legacy as a devoted father, philanthropist, and advocate for marginalized communities lives on. ...

Woman standing in front of statue
Publications May 2, 2023

Gwen Webber-Mcleod

Gwen's parents grew up in the Jim Crow South and met while studying at North ...

Headshot of Rhoda Sikes along with a photo of Onondaga Lake
Blogs February 21, 2023

A Lifetime Commitment to the Community: Rhoda Sikes

Even well after her tenure ended at Heman Street Elementary School, Rhoda Sike's passion for ...

Pamela Monaco sitting with her dog
Stories November 21, 2022

Giving With Energy & Heart: Pamela Kip Reisman Monaco

It was an “a-ha” moment for Pamela Kip Reisman Monaco when she read another woman’s ...

Angel Winfield and Lance Lyons stand in front of the Rev Theatre Company in Auburn
Publications November 21, 2022

Forging Pathways for the Future: Angela Winfield & Lance Lyons

Giving Voice Fall 2022: Donor Story

View More