The Janesville Area Foundation Fund became a reality on July 24, 2012, at an Indian Island Winery event. It was organized by a Janesville Rotary Club committee led by Dr. Dave Pope, a longtime resident and community activist. The evening featured presentations from Patrice Abbe, MN Philanthropy Partners Gift Planning Specialist, and Gail Schmidt, the New Richland Area Foundation representative on the Waseca Area Foundation Board, who has been instrumental in getting the Fund in New Richland established. With the combination of these presentations and the donations given by the people from Janesville, the Janesville Area Foundation was born.

Over the past few years, the Waseca Area Foundation had a series of conversations with people from both New Richland and Janesville about the opportunity to establish an endowment fund for their local communities, with the purpose of supporting local projects, with local money. The Janesville Area Foundation wishes to stimulate philanthropic giving to a permanent fund that will provide money for community needs for now and for the future.

In order to establish an endowment fund, each of the communities needed to raise $25,000. The purpose of the Janesville, New Richland and Waseca Foundations is to provide grants for community development projects and programs which are responsive to the changing community needs in promoting quality education, cultural, wellness, recreational, social service, environmental and civic opportunities. The money is invested in Minnesota Philanthropy Partners, with an annual return averaging around 5%. The spending policy that is followed for each of the funds ensures that the principal will exist forever.

The grants given by each community are determined by local members of that specific area. Grant applications are available on the Waseca Area Foundation website under the Grants tab.  Grant applications may be submitted by anyone in the Janesville area but can only be awarded to a nonprofit entity.  Applications are due September 30th each year to Karen Buum, Executive Director of Waseca Area Foundation.  

To view the Janesville Area Foundaton's latest brochure, click here.

If you have any questions or need further information, you may contact Karen Buum-Executive Director, Board Members below or the JAFF Representative, Dave Pope.

Board Members meet April, May and June, as well as Sept, Oct, and Nov, on the 3rd Thursday at 6 pm at the JWP High School Media Center.

JAFF Board Members:
Arlene Pooley (Chair)
Terry Gardener (Vice-Chair)
Dave Pope (Secretary)
Mike Finley (Treasurer)
Pete Adams
Pastor Griffin
Bill Adams
Jill Conlon

NEWS UPDATE: The Janesville Area Foundation sponsored a friend-raising activity in November 2013.  The event had an Italian theme and provided Italian music from one of our board members, Arlene Pooley.  The event was called “A Piece of the Pie” and free pizza was served.  We were grateful  for the great representation made by the Waseca Area Foundation Board.  Their attendance did much to cement relations between our two communities.   We met at the Purple Goose in Janesville and we appreciate their hospitality.

We gave away our first 9 grants at this event.  A total of $2800 was given in grants.

Quite a bit to time and effort was spent in generating a mailing list of Janesville residents, former residents and graduates of Janesville and JWP.  Mailings were sent to encourage support for the Janesville Area Foundation.   This mailing included a blue gift-giving envelope as well as a copy of our new brochure.  A second mailing was sent to promote the free-pizza event.  The mailings and pizza event were helpful in increasing our fund to about $109,000. 

Our future plans include a series of informational meetings about the Foundation and charitable giving.  We also hope to provide information about the Janesville area in detail.  City government, voluteerism, and visioning for the future of Janesville are some of the topics being considered.  We hope to get people thinking about projects and programs that would improve life in Janesville.  

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Special recognition for donors of $10K or more
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