Uniting a Generous Community

The Peninsula Community Foundation was recently featured in Lakeside Magazine. Hear from Lakeside and several of our board members about how we truly are uniting a generous community.

In 2021, The Peninsula Community Foundation hit a major milestone, namely 20 years of uniting the resources of the Peninsula Community to empower the work of local nonprofit organizations. “We are proud to say that our neighborhood Foundation has contributed over $2 million dollars since it was founded in 2001 by a small group of Peninsula Club golfers,” according to George Searle, current PCF President. In answer to the question, Why give to the PCF?, Searle explains that the “PCF helps organizations right here in our backyard, in the Lake Norman area. Many of the charities we help fall below the United Way target and have to rely on local fundraising options. These local charities are making a huge impact right here where we live. The PCF helps out in many different ways other than fund raising. Many of the volunteer board members have business, technology and other useful skills that can help organizations with their operations. We also host luncheons for charities to share best practices with each other and to build partnerships.”

Despite not being able to host in-person fund-raising events since the Covid19 Pandemic began, “thanks to the generosity of our neighbors, we have been able to raise over $200,000 and mobilize dozens of volunteers to help local charities collect and deliver food to the first responders and those in need,” says Ron Bruce, a PCF’s treasurer.

“Thanks to the effort and talents of HypeMill, a Cornelius-based marketing firm, we were able to completely redesign our website last summer, making it mobile device-friendly, “says Caroline Stevens, PCF board member, “and we continue to develop it into a resource for charities who can advertise their need for donations of goods or volunteer hours.” “I believe the logo reboot, which still includes The Peninsula Club’s green flag and the Peninsula Yacht Club’s yellow and blue flag, is a great reference to our major organizational supporters, and the tagline, ‘Uniting a Generous Community’ is a brilliant communication of our mission,” Stevens added.

Tracy Podesta, the PCF’s longest serving board member, is particularly proud of the relationships the PCF has established with its supported charities. “We go beyond financial support whenever we can help,” Podesta says, “hosting lunches for charities who serve the same or similar groups of people so they can network and help each other with ideas and resources.” “We were able to help deliver lunches to local elementary school students with Neighborhood C.A.R.E. while students were learning remotely, for example.”

For those interested in becoming more involved – either by financially supporting the PCF’s work or helping local nonprofits by attending their fundraising events or donating goods or services – The Peninsula Community Foundation’s website, YourPCF.org, is the best resource. All of the nonprofits who have received grants from the PCF have their own webpages on the site, along with homepage listings of their current needs.

“We are lucky to have generous, loyal corporate sponsors, like Lake Norman Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram, a Gold Sponsor, and Ivester Jackson Distinctive Properties and First National Bank, both Silver Sponsors,” says Garry Zage, one of the PCF corporate liaisons. “We are hoping to be able to celebrate our 20th year milestone with all of our donors and sponsors sometime in 2022,” according to Stevens,” We will just have to rename it our “Twenty-ish Anniversary Celebration!”

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PCF is committed to helping local nonprofit organizations develop and expand not only through direct financial contributions but with their entire mission. We work alongside them to increase marketing and PR, improve fundraising efforts, enhance volunteer recruitment, expand their presence in the community and improve their strategic planning and corporate governance. Our recipient organizations benefit not only from our financial contribution, but from the direct involvement of PCF Board Members, neighbors, and volunteers in the Peninsula and Cornelius community. PCF is uniting a generous community. Take your first step in joining this community and help the Peninsula be stronger together as we empower the work of nonprofit organizations.