AACF Campaign Receives SDCF… | South Dakota Community Foundation

AACF Campaign Receives SDCF Challenge Grant, Celebrates 40th Anniversary

June 2, 2024 // Community Savings Account
Aberdeen area community foundation check presentation

About two years into its fund drive to double its endowment fund, the Aberdeen Area Community Foundation (AACF) received a boost from the South Dakota Foundation (SDCF). In 2022, SDCF, which partners with AACF through its Community Savings Account program, offered a challenge to the Aberdeen foundation in that if it raised $400,000, SDCF would add $50,000 to its endowment. That milestone has been achieved, a fitting moment in AACF’s 40th anniversary year.

“We’re very excited to receive the challenge grant from SDCF,” said Heath Johnson, chair of the AACF board of directors. “It’s a great program they offer to support their local community foundation partners. We thank everyone who donated to support the Foundation’s work and help us reach this part of our goal.”

With the grant, AACF has raised $475,000 in cash and pledges to increase its endowment and its funds available for grantmaking every year. “While we reached our target for the challenge grant,” Johnson added, “we see that $500,000 level and $1 million in total funds. That will double our endowment value from when we started our campaign and increase how much we can make in grants every year. So we’re not quite finished fundraising.”

AACF was established in 1984. Over time, it has made more than $300,000 in grants to the community, more than a third of that total since 2020. With its endowed funds invested in SDCF, AACF can use a portion of its assets for grants every year. With the near doubling of its assets in the past couple years, AACF’s grantmaking will nearly double as well.

“A lot of people don’t know much about us,” Johnson said, “but when they learn that we’ve supported one or several of their favorite nonprofits in town, they realize the impact we are having. We want to tell more people about what we do and encourage them to support us.” People interested supporting AACF can visit its website for information on donating (including how to donate online) at https://aberdeencommunityfoundation.com/donate/

Pictured above: Patrick Gallagher (second from left), SDCF community development coordinator for northeastern South Dakota, recently presented a ceremonial check representing SDCF’s $50,000 challenge grant paid to the AACF for raising $400,000 in its endowment campaign. Flanking Gallagher to receive the check are AACF board members (from left) Matt Harr, chair Heath Johnson, Don Kainz, Bea Smith, and Robert Fouberg.

The Aberdeen Area Community Foundation was established in 1984 as a standalone 501(c)(3) nonprofit corporation with a goal of creating a long-term funding source for charitable causes in the local area. With careful investment, the fund will continue to grow and enhance quality of life in the local area forever. This fund is one of more than 80 Community Savings Accounts in partnership with the South Dakota Community Foundation. For more information, visit https://aberdeencommunityfoundation.com

SDCF is a public non-profit organization established in 1987. SDCF, with offices in Pierre, Rapid City, Sioux Falls and Aberdeen administers 1,200 funds benefiting hundreds of charitable organizations annually. The Foundation distributed nearly $31 million in grants in 2023 which made a tremendous difference in communities statewide. This would not have been possible without the generosity of our donors. If you have a specific cause you would like to support or would prefer to give for the general good of our state, please visit https://sdcommunityfoundation.org/giving to learn more or call 1-800-888-1842.