What is GIFT VII?

GIFT VII is a Lilly Endowment Inc. grant initiative that was offered to community foundations throughout the state of Indiana. Rush County received $500,000 to build unrestricted endowment funds (aka “community grant funds”), providing our donors the limited-time opportunity to have their donations matched $2 : $1. Additionally, RCCF has received $50,000 in community leadership planning funds, as well as $100,000 that will be used for community action planning this summer. In 2022, the community foundation will have the opportunity to additionally apply for up to $5 million for Rush County! GIFT VII is truly a gift to our community.


What do community grant funds do?

Our community grant funds are tremendous endowment funds that support the changing needs of the community at the RCCF’s Board of Directors discretion.  Since our first community grant in 1993, $1.3 million has been awarded to 116 different organizations serving Rush County.  Learn more here.


Explain “community leadership”

Lilly Endowment Inc. is encouraging community foundations to take a leadership role in their communities by investing time and resources in convening, researching, and understanding their communities better.  Understanding our community in its entirety equips us with the knowledge to make the best decisions when granting our donors’ dollars.  As a recognized community convener, we can assist facilitation of meetings, coordination of efforts, and ideally, combine duplicate efforts to ensure Rush County’s tremendous, volunteer-lead agencies are maximizing their time and energy.


RCCF has already received $50,000 to begin community leadership planning work.  Throughout the Fall of 2019, we hosted community conversations through Rush County to connect with as many residents, businesses, and nonprofit organizations as possible to receive input on Rush County’s greatest strengths, weaknesses, and opportunities. The information that was gathered from the various conversations was compiled and assisted us with our grant application for $100,000 to implement an idea(s) that best impacts Rush County. RCCF was fortunate enough to receive this $100,000 grant that will be used for community action planning in the summer of 2021. We will then consider how we can best apply for the $5 million grant opportunity.



Contact us!  GIFT VII is an exciting initiative that has the potential to transform our community foundation and shape the future of Rush County.  We would love your questions, engagement, and feedback as we navigate the fun ahead.


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