Essex Community Foundation

Benefits of giving through ECF

Investing in your community

There are many benefits to you giving through Essex Community Foundation. 

Local Focus

ECF is managed by local people and makes grants to local causes, unless you specify otherwise. You can be confident that your money will only go to support charities and voluntary groups whose work will benefit local people.

If you establish a Named Fund you have the opportunity to make your giving even more local by focussing on the town or district where you live, or where your business is based.

One-off or unrestricted donations received by ECF are pooled into our Acorn Fund which enables us to respond to the growing needs of local communities and provide much-needed funding, year on year, to local charities.


ECF is able to provide you with a tailormade service, through a charitable Named Fund, reflecting your individual interests and circumstances.  This covers all aspects of the Fund’s operation, from the kinds of issues or special interests you are passionate about, to being involved in deciding how grants are to be awarded from your Fund. 

Moreover, the Foundation’s broad remit means that you may channel donations to a number of charitable purposes that are close to their heart, including individuals and registered national and international charities.


Much of the work involved in registering an independent charitable trust and the consequent time and expense, can be avoided by working with and through the Foundation. Establishing your Named Fund means that you can easily access our skills and expertise. 

Only a simple agreement between us and you, which can be amended later if required, is needed. ECF undertakes all the day-to-day administration involved in managing your fund and fulfils all of the accounting and reporting requirements. We can also administer a full grantmaking programme, from handling enquiries to making decisions. You can be involved as much or as little as you want.

Meeting needs

In a county like Essex, many of the needs and deprivation are hidden from plain sight. A great deal of vital work in the community is undertaken by smaller, less well known groups so it can be difficult to find out about local charitable projects that need support.

ECF’s local knowledge can help to identify suitable recipients and reach those who might not otherwise access such funds.


ECF is governed by a Board of Trustees, supported by a professional team, who provide us with a wide range of skills, experience and an extensive knowledge of the local community and its needs.

It has established comprehensive grantmaking and investment policies and procedures to ensure ECF takes a long-term view, focussing on steady growth and community investment.


ECF is here to stay. By building a substantial, multi-purpose endowment fund for the community, ECF is not only helping to tackle today’s needs, but is also developing the means to address the needs of future generations. Anyone considering leaving a legacy to the local community can be assured that ECF will continue to honour their charitable wishes in perpetuity.