GCE’s mission is to “provide strategic leadership and resources to help make Gray a healthy, vibrant, and sustainable community”. This last year we’ve been busy with the “strategic leadership” part of the mission – the Bike-Ped plan, in particular, has consumed a lot of our energy and attention.
Now it’s time to focus on the “resources”. The way we can do that is to build an endowment.
What’s an endowment, you ask?
An endowment is like a foundation that (in our case) is dedicated to the people living in the town of Gray. The endowment funds are invested, and we use the interest earned to make grants to organizations that benefit the people or the town of Gray. For example, in recent years we’ve granted $1,000 to the Gray Historical Society to buy a laptop and scanner so they can scan their documents, and make presentations in the schools.
We also used endowment funds to help buy a new snowmobile and groomer to groom the ski trails on Libby Hill.
Our funds are professionally and carefully managed by the Maine Community Foundation, which is a nonprofit that is set up to manage these sorts of endowments. It has assets of $318 million that are held in stewardship for more than 1,400 different funds across the state of Maine.
Currently, our endowment is small, but we’re looking to grow it. You can help by:
- Making a gift of cash
- Donating real estate
- Leaving a bequest in your will
- Making a gift of appreciated stock (a gain in stock isn’t taxable if you donate it to GCE)
- Making gifts of valuable items such as jewelry, antiques, or art
- Naming GCE as the beneficiary of IRAs or other retirement funds, which can reduce the impact of taxes on the next generation’s inheritance.
If you’re interested in discussing this, please call Anne Gass, GCE President, at 657-4935 or talk to one of the other board members.
We can all work together to build a lasting legacy for Gray!