Grants skyrocket in Colorado

Grantmaking in Colorado reached $412 million in 2006, a jump of more than half over a two-year period, a new report says.

The 51 percent increase from 2004 to 2006 was fueled by a strong economy a surge in donor-advised funds that drove community foundation assets higher, says the Colorado Giving Study, conducted by the Colorado Association of Funders.

While assets of all types of foundation grew from 2004 to 2006, the combined assets of community foundations in the state ballooned 135 percent.

However, private foundations remained the leading grantmakers in the state in 2006, donating almost $270 million, or about 65 of the total, the report says.

Health and human-services agencies were the primary beneficiaries, collecting almost six in 10 foundation dollars, and became the favorite grantee of private foundations, which had preferred education groups in 2004.

Over the past three years, grantmaking in Colorado has become more statewide, with $119 awarded to nonprofits outside the Denver Metro area, an increase of 75 percent over 2003.

Virtually all Colorado funders expect the grantmaking outlook to remain strong, with 94 percent planning to maintain or increase their grant awards in 2008.

The study is based on IRS and survey data from 299 grantmakers across the state, including 210 private foundations, 49 corporate foundations, 21 community foundations and 19 federated funds.

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