Rotary Foundation Sunrise
Foundation 2021 Update
Coldwater Township Sunrise Rotary Foundation The Coldwater Township Sunrise Rotary Club (CTSRC) chartered on October 8, 1986. In the following year the Club founders established the Coldwater Township Sunrise Rotary Foundation (CTSRF). The original intent of the CTSRF was to raise $40,000 for the Endowment and potentially eliminate the need for future fundraising activities. However, over the years, the Sunrise Rotary Club’s fundraising activities and events have become a hallmark for the Club which is widely recognized and respected in the community. As the Club’s fundraising capability increased, the size and scope of the charitable projects the Club has supported in the community has also increased. The Sunrise Rotary Club members believe that the active, dedicated engagement of our diverse membership with the strength of our Foundation set us apart from other community support organizations which has reinforced the success the Club has enjoyed over the history of the organization. The CTSR Foundation is a non-profit 501c3 organization and all donations are tax deductible to the fullest extent of the law, however we always advise our patrons to consult with their tax advisor. Just as the Club has grown and strengthened over the years, our Foundation has also grown and evolved. With donations from members and the public plus the Club’s commitment to donate 50% of the proceeds from the annual Drawdown event in January, the Foundation Endowment grew to $165,000 by 2013. With the oversight of the Foundation Board and a prudent investment strategy the Endowment has reached the $600,000 level in the past couple years. We strongly encourage support from our membership at whatever level they are comfortable with and have established a recognition program named “Hal and Lillian Creal Service Above Self” that recognizes giving levels and includes accumulative donations. There have been several years in the recent past where 100% of the members have donated at some level to our Foundation – quite an achievement and an indication of how important the Foundation is to our membership. The Foundation distributes funds every year based on a calculation specified in the bylaws (4% of the 5-year average of the fund value at the fiscal year end) and has primarily focused on supporting education and scholarships, although has the flexibility to fund other charitable projects as long as they qualify under the IRS 501c3 regulations. In fiscal year 2021/2022 the Foundation will have around $17,500 to distribute of which $9,000 is current earmarked for supporting scholarships. The Foundation is overseen by a Board of Directors and is governed by the established bylaws which are reviewed on a routine basis. The Board currently consists of 11 Directors including 4 officers, the Chair, Vice Chair, Treasurer and Secretary. Directors are elected to three-year terms and the Directors terms are staggered so that generally no more than 4 director’s terms expire in any given year. Officers’ terms are also 3-year terms. Directors and Officers are nominated and elected during the annual meeting which occurs after the fiscal year ends on June 30. There is also a requirement that two of the Foundation Board’s directors are also directors of the CTSRC Board, one of those being the Immediate Past President of the CTSRC, to ensure that there is continuous collaboration and communication between Boards. Over the past couple of years, the Foundation Board has undertaken a major initiative to strengthen the governance process including several revisions and improvements to the bylaws, establishment of an approved Gifting Policy, creation of an approved Gift Receipt and Thank You letter (for donations), additional financial reporting and a disciplined requirement for review of the financial records and investment strategy, establishment of electronic data storage, and added Directors and Officers insurance policy coverage. Recently a Club-wide team has taken on a project to totally retool the Club’s social media platform and has launched our redesigned and upgraded website coldwatersunriserotary.com with newly added capability of accepting online donations and payments. There are Standing Committees that report to the CTSRF Board and the Board may appoint Ad Hoc Committees from time if the need arises. Committee members are recruited by the Committee Chair appointed by the Board which may be any active member of the CTSRC. We encourage anyone who might be interested in becoming a Foundation Director or serving on one of the committees to let any Board member know their interest. In 2018 several of our Club members partnered with external stakeholders and initiated a project called the Sunrise Rotary Promise Project. With initial support from the Club ($15,000/yr. for 3 years) and our Foundation ($5,000/yr. for 5 years) the Sunrise Rotary Promise Scholarship Program was launched in partnership with the Kellogg Community College Foundation. In the fall of 2019, the first round of Sunrise Promise Scholarships totaling $20,000 were awarded to 19 KCC students in the healthcare and skilled trades programs. Of the first-year awardees, nine complete their programs. In the fall of 2020, the second-year awards were made to 22 students of diverse background. With hard work and the engagement of over 30 of our Club members the Promise Team has secured five more years of direct funding for the Promise Scholarship Program and in 2018 established the Promise Endowment Fund, a separate fund under the umbrella of the Foundation and thus far has raised over $350,000 toward the goal of $500,000 by the end of 2025. This will ensure the sustainability of the Promise Scholarship Program for a long time to come. In September 2021 the third round of Sunrise Promise scholarships were awarded to 22 KCC student totally $23,000 and bring the three year total to over 60 scholarships awarded and $60,000.