With a focus strictly on maintaining and bettering the community for all of the residents living in the area, the St. Croix Valley Foundation works tirelessly to ensure everyone is cared for. Offering charity opportunities, providing resources for residents, creating programs to unite members of the community and forming partnerships between companies and businesses with goals to aid the area are all part of the important work the foundation does on a daily basis.
“From the beginning, the St. Croix Valley Foundation has helped donors make a difference in the quality of life for all who live, work and play in the St. Croix Valley,” Heather Logelin, president of the St. Croix Valley Foundation, says.
Since 1995 when the foundation was first formed in the basement of a bank in Somerset, it has remained committed to promoting philanthropy and working to make sure the needs of the population in the valley region are fulfilled.
The organization is partnered with 10 different foundations in the six-county region and includes the Hudson Community Foundation and the Stillwater Area Community Foundation. Within these partnerships the focus is on three main fields: philanthropic leadership, grant making and community initiatives. They help their donors make educated donations with their money; they offer 90 scholarships equaling $150,000 to students every year. They also give around two million dollars to support charity organizations in the area such as the Hugh J. Andersen Foundation and the United Way St. Croix Valley.
Anyone can become involved in the foundation in a variety of ways such as joining the board, becoming a committee member and donating to organizations affiliated with the foundation or the foundation itself.
Angie Pilgrim, grants and programs officer, began working with the foundation in 2014 because she too has a passion for building communities. Some of the programs she has worked with to uplift the region include State of the Valley, which looks at the needs of the areas so they can increase grant making and programs for specific communities.
“I believe we should build communities that are compassionate and responsive. I believe we should build communities that provide ample opportunities for residents to thrive. I believe we should build communities that engage members in important, respectful conversations,” Pilgrim says.
The foundation hosts events throughout the year to support special causes such as the Remember Project, a function to support those living with dementia. An ongoing event is the Conversations in the Valley luncheon lecture series that occurs once a month. It is led by speakers who discuss issues the region faces and try to raise awareness for different organizations working to solve them.
Looking into 2019 the foundation is currently working on a $7.5 million campaign entitled Together we are Stronger which is about encouraging individuals in the area to come together to better battle issues faced by the community as a whole. They are also going to break down stereotypes and encourage recovery for people who are addicted to substances, with the Heroin, Opioid Prevention Effort.
“We like to say that the river is not a boundary, but a bridge that brings us together for a common good,” Logelin says.