Advised Fund Guidelines

In 1935 The Winston-Salem Foundation established its first donor-advised fund, which was also just the second donor-advised fund to be established in the U.S.  Since then, the Foundation has experienced marked growth in the establishment of donor-advised funds, both endowed and non-endowed in nature, allowing donors to support the issues and organizations that they care about.  A $1,000 minimum balance is required for non-endowed advised funds. There is a $25,000 minimum balance for endowed advised funds, with a $250,000 balance required for access to principal.


  • The minimum grant recommendation is $100.  There is no maximum on the number of grant recommendations a donor advisor can make from his or her fund. Advisors must recommend at least one grant every three years.  If no grant is made within three years, the Foundation will contact the advisor to discuss options for converting the fund. If the Advisor(s) cannot be located, fails to respond in a timely fashion to Foundation correspondence or lacks capacity to provide the Foundation with advice as an Advisor, the fund will be considered inactive and the assets will be managed and distributed at the discretion of The Winston-Salem Foundation Committee. 
  • Grants may be recommended online, by mail, or by fax.
  • Donor advisors may recommend grants to the Foundation from the fund if they are consistent with the charitable purposes of the Foundation.  The Foundation will consider and evaluate all recommendations.  Such recommendations will be solely advisory, and the Foundation is not bound by such recommendations.
  • Grant recommendations will be paid by the 15th and 30th of each month.
  • As a donor's company policy allows, grant recommendations may include corporate matching gift forms.
  • Recipient organizations must either be recognized as exempt public charities under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code or be religious organizations, educational institutions, nonprofit hospitals and medical research organizations, or governmental entities.  (Private foundations are not eligible for donor-advised grants.)


  • To organizations that are not classified as 509(a)(1) or 509(a)(2) public charities under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code.  Therefore, private foundations and supporting organizations are not eligible.
  • If donors, fund advisors, related parties or designees are entitled to material benefits from the organization (such as athletic booster club benefits, dinners or other special events)
  • Grants, loans, compensation or similar payments to donors, fund advisors or other parties
  • Pledges and other legally-binding financial obligations made by donors, fund advisors, or related parties
  • Political campaigns or lobbying activities
  • To support a specific person or family, including assistance with scholarships, humanitarian efforts, bills, or to assist specific persons following a catastrophic event, accident or injury

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