Frequently Asked Questions

What is the Watertown Foundation?

Fifty people living in Watertown and Oakville started the Watertown Foundation 1925. United by a desire to make a positive impact on the quality of life in our community, they established a community foundation. A community foundation is a tax-exempt, non-profit institution created to grow the charitable gifts of its members for the common good of the community they share.


What does a community foundation do?

Community foundations have two important responsibilities. The first is to assess the needs of the community regularly. The second is to identify, combine and invest the charitable gifts of its members to benefit the community.


Does every community have a community foundation?

No. There are fewer than 700 community foundations in the U.S. The Watertown Foundation is the only one created to support the diverse nonprofit organizations that enhance and enrich the Watertown and Oakville community.


Who are the members of the Watertown Foundation?

The foundation’s members are local residents and others who want to make a positive impact in Watertown and Oakville through charity.


How does the foundation award grants?

Each year, members of the Watertown Foundation consider grant requests from tax-exempt organizations that offer services or respond to needs in the community. The foundation uses the investments earned on its endowment to fund grants and scholarships.


How does the foundation govern and manage its funds?

Professionally accredited and licensed investors manage the Watertown Foundation’s funds with oversight from a volunteer 15-member Board of Trustees. A part-time consultant administers the foundation.


Are contributions to the Watertown Foundation tax deductible?

Yes. Donations to the Watertown Foundation, a public charity, receive the maximum tax benefit allowable by law.