To steward long-term resources for the Great Lakes Conference and distribute appropriate income to its ministries.
The Foundation makes transformative grants to congregations and agencies of the Great Lakes Conference from a portion of its unrestricted assets. Grants fall into the three main categories of facility renovation or expansion, infrastructure, and ministry programming, each designed to add growth to the Kingdom of God so that what is happening in heaven above may be worked out on earth below. The Foundation supports visionary initiatives rather than ongoing operational expenses, benevolent responsibilities or circumstance that may create dependency.
· Stewardship - Promoting the practice of biblical stewardship
· Vision - Stimulating visionary strategic planning
· Discipleship - Cultivating committed discipleship
· Creativity - Encouraging intentionality and creativity
· Sacrifice - Nurturing proportional giving and sacrificial benevolence
· Kingdom - Managing available resources for Kingdom growth
· Service - Serving those who serve
A Brief History of The Foundation
The Foundation was created by action of the Ohio Conference in June 1997 after an eighteen month conversation and negotiation with Blanchard Valley Health Association (BVHA) to purchase Winebrenner Village, a long-term care facility owned and operated by the Ohio Conference. As part of the transfer, Blanchard Valley Health Association made a commitment to provide intentional spiritual care for patients at the Blanchard Valley and Bluffton Hospitals as well as continuing education for clergy and laypersons. In turn, The Foundation made a financial commitment to support the chaplaincy program, and over the next 17 years made annual contributions that totaled nearly one half million dollars.
The Foundation is incorporated in the State of Ohio as a nonprofit corporation and is governed by a seven-member Board of Directors. Directors are elected by the Executive Board of the Great Lakes Conference (successor to the Ohio Conference) and serve three year terms. A President and Financial Controller manage the work of The Foundation.
Nine grants totaling $380,900 were awarded in 1999 as part of the first grant-making cycle. Through 2019, a total of 218 grants totaling $5.6 million has been awarded in support of congregations and agencies of the Great Lakes Conference.
In January 2004 The Foundation established a means of investing long-term resources for Great Lakes Conference congregations and agencies. These Investment Facilitator Agreements (IFA) create a contract in which The Foundation serves as custodian of the agency’s long-term financial resources and provides quarterly distribution as instructed by the congregation or agency. Through 2018 four IFA covenants have been created totaling more than $800,000.
By mid-2019 total assets of The Foundation approach $8 million including Investment Facilitator Agreements and Donor Restricted Funds. In its grant-making responsibility, The Foundation makes available for annual distribution a maximum of four percent of the Net Assets without Donor Restrictions calculated on the previous three-year rolling average as of December 31.