Mission & History

Our Mission

Our mission is to build permanent endowment funds and meet charitable community needs. The Foundation achieves its mission by:

  • Enabling donors to fulfill their charitable desires
  • Increasing the capacity of nonprofit organizations to fulfill their individual missions
  • Facilitating prudent management and care of funds
  • Promoting community philanthropy through education
  • Providing affiliate services to neighboring communities
  • Meeting needs through grants, scholarships, and pass-through funds

Our History

The foundation was established in 1999 by a committed group of individuals who wanted to create a vehicle that would promote endowment building in the Salina community. The group recruited a board of directors who donated the funds and time to complete the paperwork to create the nonprofit corporation.  A founding donor campaign was initiated and completed within the first year.  Board members secured $2.9 million in gifts and pledges from more than 100 donors to form an administrative endowment for Foundation operations.  In 2000, the foundation’s first executive director was hired and served in the role until 2015. Today, the foundation has grown to 9 staff members in the Salina office, one in the Russell office, and one in Hays.

The foundation’s name was chosen with care to reflect a desire not to limit the scope of its work within the boundaries of Salina. With Salina being the “hub” of a region of smaller communities, the board of directors felt it was important to allow these smaller communities to be included, thus resulting in the addition of the word “Greater” to its name.  The first affiliate was established in 2000. Additional affiliates were added over the years and GSCF now hosts 14 regional affiliate foundations and serve north central Kansas.

Since 1999, the Foundation has enabled donors to generously contribute through its 501(c)(3) status to benefit charitable organizations in Salina and throughout the nation.  The first Foundation Board set a goal to have $10 million in assets in 10 years.  On the foundation’s 10th anniversary, GSCF had assets of more than $50 million and had distributed more than $20 million on behalf of its donors.  The foundation’s assets are now over $200 million. Currently it is the largest community foundation in the state and has grown to include more than 600 funds, serving the needs of hundreds of nonprofits, initiatives and funds throughout greater Salina and north central Kansas.

The Greater Salina Community Foundation continues its vision to multiply the impact of charitable giving by connecting community members, nonprofits and other partners to look forward to a brighter future.  Much has been accomplished and we are ready to do more.

View this timeline to see brief snippets of the Foundation’s growth over time.

Recent News

Assaria Community Fund awards grant

The Greater Salina Community Foundation recently awarded a grant from the Assaria Community Fund. The Assaria Family Park Committee received $1,000 to purchase two new bike racks for the park. As park usage continues to increase, so does the number of bicycles on park grounds. The committee plans to place these new racks at both the north and south ends of the playground to improve safety and security. “It is exciting to see great efforts to continue to make our communities better,” said Steven Johnson, a representative of the Assaria Community Fund Grants Committee. “The foundation fund provides a way to help[...]

GSCF announces grant cycles for new fiscal year

The Greater Salina Community Foundation is now accepting grant applications for its August grant cycle. Online applications are due by 11:59 p.m. on August 15, 2019. Over $135,000 is currently available through the following funds: Assaria Community Fund – supports charitable projects that improve quality of life for citizens of Assaria, Kansas. Dane G. Hansen Community Grant Fund – supports projects or programs that address arts and culture, community beautification, community social services and security, conservation and environment, education and health care. Fund for Early Childhood Care, Education and Development - supports organizations or programs whose work furthers the care, education, development, health, safety[...]