Taking the Pulse of a Community

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By Sharon Danosky

More than any other single organization, community foundations have a strong understanding on the wants, needs and aspirations of a community.

Strictly speaking, community foundations bring together resources from individuals, families and businesses to support the nonprofits in their communities. In reality, they do so much more. From helping emerging philanthropists to maximize their contributions to building capacity in the nonprofit sector, community foundations play an integral role in addressing community needs and improving the lives of all those who reside there.

They also take the pulse of the community. They understand how its residents are doing and where there are gaps in services and opportunities.

I have had the privilege of working with many community foundations and I continue to be impressed by the depth of their work and their commitment to improving the lives of those living in their communities. Recently, I was fortunate to attend an event for one of the foundations where they launched their 2019 Community Wellness Index. Many community foundations across the state undertake such studies within their communities on a regular basis. The wealth of information found in these studies is invaluable – for nonprofit managers, boards of directors, community leaders, philanthropists and even consultants.

Therefore, I have decided to share links to these studies below.

I hope it brings greater understanding of the community where you live.

The Community Foundation for Greater New Haven

Connecticut Community Foundation

Fairfield County’s Community Foundation

Hartford Foundation for Public Giving

Northwest Connecticut Community Foundation

Valley Community Foundation

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