Increasing Philanthropic Resources

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As Greater Boston’s community foundation, the Boston Foundation is dedicated to building and increasing philanthropic resources for our city and our region The Foundation holds some 900 separate funds established by individuals, families or businesses either for current giving or as a legacy for the future.  We also raise funds for our endowment and for civic leadership work and for special initiatives focused on some of our community’s central challenges .


more than
$1 billion in grants
to nonprofits
since 2015

The Boston Foundation works closely with donors who establish Donor Advised Funds to enhance their giving in informed and effective ways.  We also offer support to donors through the The Philanthropic Initiative, which provides customized philanthropic consulting to individuals, families, foundations and companies looking to increase the impact of their giving.

We also conduct an annual campaign for the Civic Leadership Fund, which supports all of the Foundation’s research, convenings and public policy work in Greater Boston and helps the Foundation inform and ameliorate the underlying forces that affect poverty and inequity in our community—and we raise funds to support Special Initiatives in areas such as college completion and community safety. 

We raise around
$1.5 million annually
to support the
Civic Leadership Fund.

The Permanent Fund for Boston, the large, flexible endowment that supports all of the Foundation’s grant making in Greater Boston, is primarily funded through planned and legacy gifts.

We encourage young and startup companies to build philanthropy into their DNA by joining Pledge 1% Boston, committing to give one percent of their company to support their communities.

And we are proud to host the Giving Common, an innovative, web-based resource for giving in Massachusetts that provides current information about nonprofits and invites easy and quick giving online—with the goal of increasing philanthropy in the Commonwealth.


Also See...

Latest News

Equality Fund at the Boston Foundation announces $88,000 in grants for LGBTQ organizations
Date: June 01, 2017
The Equality Fund at the Boston Foundation, the first permanent, endowed fund for the benefit of members of the Greater Boston LGBTQ community and their families, today announced its fifth round of grants – totaling $88,000 – to eleven Greater Boston organizations serving the LGBTQ community.
Venture capitalist announces major commitment to Boston Foundation grantees at local launch of national business-philanthropy movement Pledge 1%
Date: September 30, 2016
Jeff Fagnan, founder of Accomplice, a venture capital firm with more than $400 million raised to date, announced Wednesday evening that his company would begin committing one percent of its equity to support Boston Foundation grantees.  The announcement came at the launch event for Pledge 1% Boston, a new regional chapter of Pledge 1%, a national corporate philanthropy movement dedicated to making new stakeholders in support of local communities.

Co-investment Opportunities

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The Giving Common

The Giving Common is an innovative, web-based technology platform designed to provide comprehensive and current information about nonprofit organizations across the Commonwealth—and to make online charitable giving easy and quick.

Visit the Giving Common.


The Permanent Fund for Boston Longley-Elisio-photo

At the heart of everything the Boston Foundation has done over the last century—every grant it has made, every innovation it has supported, every cause it has championed—is its endowment, the Permanent Fund for Boston.  Established through bequests left by hundreds of visionary and forward-thinking Bostonians since 1917, this essential fund fuels all of the Foundation’s work and provides the resources that have sparked positive change and enabled new ideas.

The Civic Leadership Fund Golden Dome photo 2016 Over the last 15 years, the Boston Foundation has become a major civic leader for Greater Boston and our region—with crucial support from the Civic Leadership Fund. The Foundation and its many partners in the business and nonprofit communities—as well as numerous public officials—have had a real impact on a series of issues that are critical to the economic competitiveness and civic health of Greater Boston.