Starting a fund

Hamilton Community Foundation is a valuable resource to donors who want to give in a way that has impact in the community, is meaningful to them, and leaves a legacy. We combine our community knowledge, grantmaking and professional investment expertise to offer you a complete range of philanthropic services. At HCF we:

Chris and Jared celebrated their wedding by setting up a fund at HCF to support organizations making a difference for gay and lesbian youth. “We weren’t exactly kids when we got married; we didn’t need toasters,” Chris says, so they encouraged friends to launch the fund with their gifts instead. That was in 2018 and they have not looked back. Read their story here.

Fund minimums and fees

Most funds have a minimum of $25,000 but can be given over five years, and fees are typically two percent annually.


Funds can grant to registered charitable organizations that meet the fund’s purpose. This can include charities in Hamilton or throughout Canada. Funds grant according to our spending policy which is currently four percent.

Types of funds

We provide a full range of giving options – from establishing your own fund with the name and purpose you choose, to having a named fund in the Community Fund. You can fundraise for your funds and allow others to make donations, or have your fund anonymous and private. Funds can begin immediately or as a deferred fund when we receive your estate gift through your will.

Agency Fund

Establishing an agency endowment fund at HCF is a simple and efficient way to build a permanent source of income for your charitable organization.

Community Fund

Addresses Hamilton’s highest charitable needs and opportunities as they arise. Donations of any amount are welcome. Donors whose accumulated endowed donations total $5,000 may choose to have a named fund with the Community Fund.

Designated Fund

Benefits specific charities named by the donor forever, through annual grants.


Enables donors to recommend the charitable organizations or programs that will receive grants. Your endowed donation support the issues you care about forever.


Enables donors to support a specific interest area, such as arts and culture, education, environment, health and human services, and recreation, with HCF selecting appropriate grant recipients each year.

Scholarship & Bursary

Assists and encourages students who may be challenged by the costs of education. Funds are paid directly to the student’s educational institution on their behalf.

Have a question? Contact us

Learn more about giving at HCF: