Barnesville-Lamar Community Foundation
On December 7, 2006, a group of interested local citizens met at the Barnesville-Lamar County Library to learn about the possibility of establishing a community foundation for Lamar County. Following that meeting, an interim board of directors was named and approved its status of an affiliate foundation of the Community Foundation of Central Georgia and a start-up grant of $10,000 for BLCF. Affiliating with CFCG was a win-win opportunity. BLCF was able to begin accepting tax-deductible donations immediately, and CFCG provided expertise, managerial assistance, accounting, and fund management services. Our government recognizes that community foundations are remarkable forces for the common good. Therefore, Congress established the most favorable tax incentives for community foundations that encourage citizens to use a portion of their assets for the building of permanent endowments. The Barnesville-Lamar Community Foundation was created to serve this purpose as well.
The Barnesville-Lamar Community Foundation has been building awareness and soliciting contributions to grow two endowment funds to support Lamar County public schools and St. George's Episcopal School. In 2010, both of these funds reached a corpus of $50,000, and the BLCF Board of Directors has turned their focus to growing a library endowment fund for Milner.
"With each Community Grant that we make, people in the community know a little more about us and understand us a little better, " said Joe Edwards, the Foundation's Vice-Chair. "We're hoping to receive legacy gifts, to be named in people's wills - we have been named in one already," Edwards said.
The economic downturn has delayed some of the board's plans, Edwards said, but the corpus remains intact and the board is optimistic about the future. "I believe that when the economy turns, we're going to do great things," he added. Working with CFCG is "just wonderful," Edwards said. "When we need them, they are there, they have the expertise, and they advise our donors excellently, confidentially and professionally."
All Lamar County citizens share a common interest. We want our schools, churches, governmental entities, civic charities, and the community we call home to be the best they can be. BLCF has the potential through its grants to encourage and enhance local charitable entities to make Lamar County a better place to live and work. It will not happen over night, but with community support over the years, BLCF can make a real difference. Many longer term residents feel a deep obligation to give back to the community that helped us over the years. Many newcomers to our area will hopefully sense a need to contribute to an entity that can make their new home a better community. BLCF will provide a tax advantaged opportunity for these contributions.
For more information on making a difference in our community and donating to the Barnesville-Lamar Community Foundation, please contact a member of the BLCF Board of Directors or the Foundation's office at 1-866-750-9338.