Donor Advised Funds

Frequently Asked Questions

What kind of grants can a donor advised fund recommend?

Donor advised funds can recommend grants to a variety of nonprofit organizations in support of charitable activities. However, you are not able to use your donor advised fund to fulfill a pledge or purchase tickets or tables to fundraising events.


Can I make grants to churches and schools?

Yes, churches and schools are charitable organizations that qualify to receive grants from your donor advised fund.


Can I make a grant to a national charity?

Yes, the Community Foundation facilitates grants to local and national charities.


Can these funds recommend grants to individuals?

No. The Pension Protection Act of 2006 prohibits making grants from donor advised funds, including scholarships, directly to individuals. Grants must always be made to a qualifying nonprofit organization.


Are grant requests ever denied?

We have a legal obligation to deny grants that do not meet criteria established by law. This includes a grant request that is not charitable in nature, provides a direct benefit to the donor advisor or a related party or is directed to an individual.


Can I donate to my fund as much as I like?

Yes. You can contribute multiple gifts to your fund anytime with a variety of gifts including cash, stock, and real estate. Make a gift by contacting Horizon Community Funds.


Can I invite others to give to my donor advised fund?

Yes, others can give gifts to your donor advised fund if the gifts are not designated for a specific purpose.  Active fundraising efforts (like events) cannot be held for your donor advised fund.


Do grants have to be made every year?

No. One advantage of establishing a donor advised fund over a private foundation is that grants do not have to be made every year. However, if we are unable to contact fund advisors after three years of inactivity, the fund may be turned into a designated fund or the Community Impact Fund so that it continues to meet the advisor's original intent.


Can more than one person be an advisor?

Yes. In addition to individuals, groups, boards, and companies can also be named.


Can a donor advisor change current advisors or name successor advisors?

Yes. Successor advisors may be named at any time by the original fund advisors. Fund advisors can also be changed at any time. A majority of fund advisors must approve a change.


How does an advisor recommend grants from a donor advised fund?

Complete and return the Grant Recommendation Form provided by Horizon Community Funds.


How often can grants be recommended?

You can recommend grants as often as you like. 

What Horizon Community Funds brings to the table is ability to use OUR resources to address OUR needs. Keeping the administration in Kentucky provides tax advantages as well. As an individual, I’m not be able to tackle big projects alone. In collaboration with other Northern Kentuckians making gifts big and small, I can help make lasting changes in a growing community to benefit future generations.
— Kit Andrews, Member, Horizon Community Funds of Northern Kentucky Council of Trustees