Jewish Community Foundation of Los Angeles Jewish Community Foundation Announces 2016 Grants and Contributions

LOS ANGELES —The Jewish Community Foundation of Los Angeles (The Foundation) today reported financial results (unaudited) for the fiscal year ended December 31, 2016, during which it awarded grants totaling approximately $81 million to nonprofit initiatives and organizations locally, nationally and in Israel.  The 2016 grant awards cap a five-year period where distributions were $366 million by The Foundation, the largest manager of charitable assets and planned-giving solutions for Los Angeles-area Jewish philanthropists.

According to The Foundation, approximately $43 million, equal to 53 percent, of total 2016 grants were awarded to causes in the greater Los Angeles area, with the balance going to programs across the U.S. and throughout the world, principally Israel.  Notably, of that $81 million figure, approximately $27 million, or 33 percent, was granted to initiatives and organizations in the secular community while $54 million, or 67 percent, went to Jewish-affiliated causes.  By field of interest, approximately $22.5 million, or 28 percent of total awarded grants, was directed to programs supporting human services, while distributions of $20.6 million, equal to 25 percent, went to education initiatives.  (A complete breakdown of grants by field of interest is included below.)

At fiscal-year end, The Foundation’s total charitable assets under management stood at $1.1 billion, edging upward from about $1.0 billion (audited) at Dec. 31, 2015, reflecting the continued strong inflow of contributions from donors, discussed in greater detail below, and investment portfolio growth.

Contributions (or inflows) to new and existing charitable funds at The Foundation registered $136 million in fiscal 2016, largely unchanged from $138 million the prior year.  Over the past five years, donors have contributed $586 million to Foundation-administered charitable funds.  As point of note, The Foundation reported that it opened 87 new donor advised funds and endowments in 2016.

President and Chief Executive Officer Marvin I. Schotland stated: “The Foundation’s accomplishments last year principally reflect the deep, abiding generosity of our donors who make us doubly blessed – both with their compassion to better the world as well as the resources to do so.  Putting these impressive numbers into context, just over half of 2016 grant monies were deployed into programs locally – the very embodiment of a community foundation.  Yet, even while giving at home, we and our donors directed another nearly $40 million to sustain initiatives across the country and in Israel.  And consistent with prior years, approximately one-third of The Foundation’s total grants went to causes in the general community, underscoring recognition by our donors of the import to repair the whole world, not just the Jewish one.

“The growth of our asset base beyond the $1 billion threshold is significant.  As our assets grow, so too does the availability of monies that can in part be returned to the community in the form of The Foundation’s own grantmaking.  Of particular note, awards made in 2016 through The Foundation’s Cutting Edge, Israel and General Community Grants increased 38 percent from the prior year,” Schotland said.

 The Foundation reported that last year’s $81 million in grant awards breaks down by field of interest (in dollars and percentage of total giving) as follows:

  • Human services – $22.5 million (28 percent)
  • Education – $20.6 million (25 percent)
  • Jewish continuity – $14.1 million (17 percent)
  • Health – $9.7 million (12 percent)
  • Arts, culture and humanities – $6.3 million (8 percent)
  • Civic life – $4.8 million (6 percent)
  • International and foreign affairs – $2.4 million (3 percent)
  • Environment and animal welfare – $0.7 million (1 percent)
  • Science – $0.4 million

Total – $81.5 million (100 percent)

About The Jewish Community Foundation

Established in 1954, the Jewish Community Foundation of Los Angeles manages charitable assets of approximately $1.1 billion (unaudited; 12/31/16) entrusted to it by over 1,300 families and ranks among the 10 largest Los Angeles foundations. It partners with donors to shape meaningful philanthropic strategies, magnify the impact of giving, and build enduring charitable legacies. In 2016, The Foundation and its donors distributed over $81 million in grants to more than a thousand nonprofit organizations with programs that span the range of philanthropic giving. Over the past 25 years, it has distributed more than $1 billion in grants to thousands of nonprofits across a diverse spectrum. www.jewishfoundationla.org