There was a lot to highlight at the Celebration of Philanthropy event on Sept. 9. The annual event hosted by the Community Foundation of the Holland/Zeeland Area celebrated the many ways the community responded to challenges over the past 18 months.
The theme of the event, “A Reason to Celebrate
,” was designed to honor local nonprofits and celebrate their contributions to keeping members of the community fed, housed, and healthy. At the event, the foundation unveiled a music video, Sweet Town of Mine
, a tribute to the foundation's partner nonprofits and donors that came together over the past year to support the community.
Mike Goorhouse, CFHZ president and CEO, and Elizabeth Kidd, vice president of Community Impact, highlighted the stories of local nonprofits who collaborated, innovated, and adapted their service delivery, scaled up their services, and worked tirelessly to meet the needs of our community. Community Action House, Beacon of Hope, Good Samaritan Ministries, The Bridge Youth Center, and the Immigrant Relief Fund were among the nonprofits featured in the program.
“The most challenging aspect of planning our program for the evening was deciding which stories to feature,” says Kidd. “There are simply too many stories of incredible work, which I think says it all. Our nonprofits have scaled, pivoted, collaborated, and really stepped forward to care for community members in the most meaningful way — all while navigating a pandemic and its impact on their personal lives. This celebration was truly a moment to honor their dedication and show gratitude for the sacrifices they made to care for our community.”
CFHZ President Mike Goorhouse and his predecessor Janet DeYoung announce the foundation's $100 million asset milestone.
In addition to honoring local nonprofits, the Community Foundation also had a significant milestone to celebrate. In late 2020, for the first time in its history, CFHZ exceeded $100 million in total assets.
Goorhouse and past CFHZ President Janet DeYoung made the announcement, giving thanks to donors, early founders, and visionaries who realized the power of a strong Community Foundation and a robust Community’s Endowment.
They also took a moment to honor another past CFHZ president, Bill VanderBilt, who oversaw the merger of the Holland and Zeeland Community Foundations.
“This milestone in asset growth is not about the money, it is about the growth in impact that we are able to have with these resources,” says Goorhouse. “And what truly makes this growth special is the growth in relationships, trust, and leadership role in the community that has come with our growth in assets.”
He added that the CFHZ would not have been able to respond in such a significant way to the challenges of the past 18 months if it weren’t for all of its Community’s Endowment donors.
“We are deeply grateful to the donors, partners, and supporters who trust in our ability to help this community thrive today, tomorrow, and forever,” he says.
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