Tara Sumner lives in Springfield and has served 21 years as vice president of Advocates for Springfield, a grass roots group involved in promoting good land uses in its town. The group has successfully encouraged the town to adopt a comprehensive plan, a zoning ordinance, and other land use laws. As the vision and actions of the Town’s governing bodies have aligned with the goals of the Advocates for Springfield, the group found it had worked itself out of a reason to exist. The group wanted its remaining financial resources to be put to good use for the benefit of Town residents.
Tara and other officers decided to turn Advocates’ money over to the Community Foundation of Otsego County (CFOC). They established a Field of Interest Fund that will now be managed by CFOC as it issues grants to fulfill the wishes established by Advocates for Springfield.
Tara says, “Setting up a Field of Interest Fund was an excellent way to extend the impact of our group. We had a great 21-year run that can now continue in perpetuity. CFOC designed a fund just for us and we will rely upon them to support good projects within our town.”
Some of those projects could be to encourage young students through vocational scholarships, summer jobs, and early childhood education. Also support for local non-profits that add to the fabric of the community, such as the volunteer fire department and the library. And finally, to encourage the creation of affordable housing, good public transportation, and high-speed internet communications.
Advocates for Springfield stipulates that the Community Foundation will make periodic grants in amounts that allow the fund to maintain its original principal.
[Photo of Tara Sumner by Edward Ford]
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