Michigan 4-H Foundation

Make the Match to Build County 4-H Endowments

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Michigan 4-H Foundation launches county 4-H endowment match campaign

County 4-H programs in Michigan have historically been funded by a partnership between federal, state and county governments, Michigan State University and gifts from private supporters. With increasing reductions in public support, 4-H families, volunteers, clubs, alumni and other friends are coming together to build private support to sustain 4-H in local communities.

Supporters of county 4-H programs can double their personal support for 4-H by donating to the Make the Match Campaign for their county 4-H program. The goal is to raise $1 million in endowment for county 4-H programs in Michigan that will in turn be doubled by a match fund.

The Make the Match Campaign match fund is made possible by grants from the Herbert H. and Grace A. Dow Foundation, the Rollin M. Gerstacker Foundation and individual leadership gifts from Gary and Eiko Seevers and the Seevers Family Foundation, Donald and Rebecca Jost, Dale and Sally Stuby, Noel and Sandra Clarkson Stuckman, Larry and Julie Chapin, and Lowell and Marilyn Rothert.

Several counties have set goals of raising a minimum of $10,000 locally, which, if successful, will qualify the county 4-H program to receive a 1:1 match from the Michigan 4-H Foundation of every dollar raised to build an endowment to support their county’s 4-H programs.

An endowment is a fund that is permanently restricted. The corpus of the fund is invested and held intact, and the earnings from the fund are used for program support. Professional managers oversee endowment funds, investing the money in stocks, bonds, and other instruments.

Annual earnings from the fund’s investment can provide annual support for current 4-H program delivery, including scholarships for 4-H youth out-of-county experiences and participation fees; purchase of or development of new program and learning materials, or any future areas of great need to advance the county 4-H program.

Counties currently participating in the match campaign to build new endowments are Chippewa, Eaton, Luce, Mason and Midland.

Counties that already have general endowed funds with the Michigan 4-H Foundation can also use the match campaign to grow existing endowed funds. Clare and Houghton/Keweenaw counties are taking advantage of this opportunity. Both counties established 4-H endowment funds in 2007 and 2008, respectively, and have launched local campaigns to continue to grow their current endowments to make a larger investment for the future.

Kalkaska County also plans to grow the Kalkaska 4-H Youth Development Fund through this match campaign. Their endowment was created in 1987 by the Kalkaska County 4-H Leaders Association with proceeds from a real estate donation from Paul Johnson.
Kent, Osceola and Shiawassee counties have already met the maximum match and will also be receiving match funds.

The match pool has also grown from gifts from Lana Dart, Wayne and Faye Adam, James Mulvany, and W. Conard and Mary Search.