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Guest Opinion: On Community Foundation Week
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This week, the Community Foundation of Southern Wisconsin and its component funds, including the Platteville Community Fund and PHS Scholarship Fund, join with more than 750 community foundations across America in celebration of Community Foundation Week.

This is a time to recognize the impact of local philanthropy and express appreciation to all who transform our communities with their gifts of time, talent and treasure.

The Community Foundation of Southern Wisconsin is a steward of more than 550 charitable funds in nine counties including across Southwest Wisconsin. The Community Foundation also holds funds established by individual donors to support causes they care about and organizational endowments that provide ongoing support to a specific nonprofit organization, such as the Platteville Public Library Foundation Endowment. Additionally, the Community Foundation works with a number of education and scholarship funds including those in Platteville, Belmont and at Iowa–Grant.

In 2012–13, grants and scholarships from the Community Foundation’s component funds in Southwest Wisconsin totaled nearly $330,000. These charitable dollars are a significant economic investment in the Southwest Wisconsin region.

But beyond the numbers are the many stories of community projects moving forward and life doors opening. Numerous nonprofit organizations in the Southwest region benefitted from community fund grants this year. Examples of grantees include Habitat for Humanity, the Platteville Community Arboretum, Wisconsin Badger Camp, the Grant County Historical Society, the Lancaster Public Library, the Soldiers Grove Public Library, and the City of Prairie du Chien. Additionally, the scholarship programs including those in the Platteville, Iowa–Grant and Hillsboro school districts, made college more affordable for 111 Southwest Wisconsin students this year, a record number.

Donations to Southwest Wisconsin funds in 2012–13 totaled more than $567,000. There were also several bequests establishing new funds.

Southwest Wisconsin is fortunate to have had nearly 60 community members serve as volunteer advisory board members, raising money for their funds and reviewing grant applications. Many more volunteers assisted with special events including fundraising efforts and recognition ceremonies.

To all who contributed dollars, endorsements, volunteer time, or moral support to the funds and causes of the Community Foundation’s Southwest Wisconsin region, we extend a heartfelt thank you. Thank you for supporting the needs and the people of our communities. We know it feels good to give.

For information on Community Foundation activities in Southwest Wisconsin, contact Daus, 778-3344, For further information or to make an online visit the Community Foundation of Southern Wisconsin’s website,