New fund established by Underground Railroad Society of Cass County
BUCHANAN — The Underground Railroad Society of Cass County Fund (non-endowed) has been established with the Michigan Gateway Community Foundation, of Buchanan, for the purpose of supporting its mission.
The URSCC aims to to provide a focal point for exploration into the origins and activities of the Underground Railroad, the unique role the people of Cass County and the surrounding region played throughout its existence and how it impacted local, state and national history, as well as the restoration of the historic James E. Bonine House and Carriage House in Vandalia, Michigan, and other local UGRR structures as acquired.
Michigan Gateway Community Foundation President Rob Habicht recently announced the new fund.
“The URSCC board should be congratulated for taking this step toward securing a solid financial future for the organization.,” he said. “They have big plans, and the establishment of this fund, with the prospect of growing the fund through donations and converting it to a permanent endowment, indicates they are intent on succeeding well into the future.”
Financial contributions to the Underground Railroad Society of Cass County Fund from interested individuals and businesses are welcomed by organizer, and donors may benefit from a tax deduction for charitable contributions, due to this new partnership between the URSCC and Michigan Gateway Community Foundation.
“URSCC is here to serve Cass County and the surrounding area by telling the story of the UGRR and saving, restoring and maintaining the historic buildings and relics of the Underground Railroad — what it meant to our community and to the world.” said URSCC treasurer, Cathy LaPointe.
MGCF serves south Berrien and Cass counties. The foundation was established with gifts from many citizens in amounts ranging from a few dollars to hundreds of thousands of dollars. Only the income generated by the investment of these gifts is used in grant making. Thus, a gift to the community funds, such as those from Niles, Buchanan and Cass County, serve these communities in perpetuity.
The foundation manages more than 130 separate endowment funds, with combined assets of more than $19 million. In 2017, more than $400,000 in grants were made from these funds to provide for the charitable needs of the south Berrien and Cass County communities.
For information on establishing an endowment fund, or contributing to an existing fund, contact Robert Habicht at Michigan Gateway Community Foundation, 111 Days Avenue, Buchanan, or call 269-695- 3521.
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