In an effort to inspire philanthropy broadly, the Trust sponsors its own donor advised fund program as well as donor advised fund programs for financial institutions. As of September 30, 2021, the Trust’s consolidated assets totaled more than $4.7 billion. In addition, during the fiscal year, the Trust received new gifts totaling more than $1.7 billion and made combined grant commitments totaling more than $1.4 billion across the Trust and affiliated donor advised fund programs.
Donors may work with the Trust to create and contribute to one or more types of funds. Donors can shape charitable gift funds to meet their specific interests and objectives by using one or all of the basic fund types as building blocks.
An advised fund provides donors the opportunity to remain actively engaged in the grant making process. Advised funds are efficient alternatives to private foundations, may involve successor generations and may be endowed for perpetual giving.
At the time a designated fund is established, the donor designates specific charitable organizations as the perpetual recipients of the income from the fund. The Trust ensures the designated recipients receive support as long as they remain in existence and continue to fulfill their intended charitable purpose.
Donors with significant charitable assets, including complex assets like business interests, may establish a supporting organization to manage their philanthropy. As with advised funds, a supporting organization is an attractive alternative to a private foundation, providing significant tax benefits and grant making support through the Trust.
The Trust’s competitive funds are available to nonprofit organizations in metropolitan Chicago that serve the residents of the region. Competitive funds include the following:
- Field of Interest Funds: Individuals and organizations may pool their charitable gifts of any size into a common fund that addresses an issue of importance to them and to the community. Income from these funds is distributed by the Trust in accordance with each fund’s specific purpose.
- Restricted Funds: A donor may establish a fund dedicated to an area of concern to the community. These funds enable the Trust to respond to ongoing needs in specific areas.
- Unrestricted Funds: Through unrestricted funds, donors enable the Trust to respond to the community’s most pressing challenges in creative and flexible ways. These funds provide some of the Trust’s most important resources capable of addressing the ever-changing needs of the community.
The following charts compare the total assets, contributions, and combined grant commitments of the past five years for The Chicago Community Trust for the fiscal year ending September 30, 2021.
COMBINED GRANT COMMITMENTS
During fiscal year 2021, The Chicago Community Trust received contributions of $1,780,364,955. The following is an analysis of these contributions by fund type.
2020 CONTRIBUTIONS BY FUND TYPE
Board and management work closely to ensure charitable dollars given through The Chicago Community Trust are used for their intended purposes. Mindful of the cost associated with fulfilling the mission of the Trust, expenses are carefully monitored. During fiscal year 2021, total consolidated operating expenses exclusive of grants and program-related expenses were $30,844,164 (administrative expenses of $21,739,604 and investment management and custodian fees of $9,104,560), representing 0.64 percent of total assets.
FISCAL YEAR 2021 CONTRIBUTIONS BY FUND TYPE
GRANT COMMITMENTS BY FUNDING SOURCE
Competitive Grant Making
The growth of The Chicago Community Trust and Affiliates is achieved through a combination of new contributions received and investment performance. The Trust’s Investment Committee, with the assistance of professional investment consultants, is responsible for establishing investment policy and the continual monitoring of individual managers and their investment performance. The following are charts that summarize the asset allocation target for the Trust, the investment performance and relevant performance benchmarks.