Supporting Kern County’s Hard-Working Nonprofit Community

Kern Community Foundation strives to support the nonprofit community of Kern County not just for today but for generations to come. This support comes in the form of our Nonprofit Strengthening Initiative and includes competitive grants, donor-directed grantmaking, our Give Big Kern online day of giving, the Nonprofit Empowerment Center on our website, and a wide range of professional development and networking opportunities. Our goal is to foster a vibrant and collaborative nonprofit community by increasing the visibility, capacity, sustainability and resiliency of local nonprofits.

Attracting Donor-Directed Funding from the Foundation

Because we are a community foundation, the majority of our grants are directed by our fundholders according to their interests. This donor-directed grantmaking continues to have a major impact in our community. The Foundation has grown to almost $30 million in total assets; however, more than 65% of those funds are endowed, meaning that we must protect the principal and can only grant out a small percentage annually.

Registering with the Foundation and maintaining a Silver or higher transparency rating on GuideStar.org, as well as engaging in our many services to nonprofits can give your agency the added visibility and credibility with fundholders looking to invest in local charities.

Registration with the Foundation is the Gateway to Our Nonprofit Services

We encourage local nonprofits serving Kern County to register with Kern Community Foundation. Registration is free and opens the door to a wide range of services that include:

  • Listing in our Community Giving Guide and its online companion, the Nonprofit Search engine on our website;
  • Eligibility to apply for our Available Grants;
  • Eligibility to participate in our online day of giving, Give Big Kern, which not only helps nonprofits raise unrestricted funds and recruit volunteers, but also includes a robust capacity-building training component built around best practices for 21st-century online fundraising and donor engagement;
  • Inclusion in our extensive Nonprofit E-mail List, so your agency can stay up to date with useful news for the local nonprofit sector;
  • Access to web-based resources available only to Foundation Registered Partners, including the ability to submit your agency’s events (fundraisers, resource fairs, etc.) for posting on our website’s Community Events Calendar, and access to grant searches through Candid’s Foundation Directory Online, flagship service of our Nonprofit Empowerment Center;
  • Exclusive training and networking opportunities for nonprofit leaders;
  • And more!

To Register with the Foundation

First search for your agency in our Nonprofit Search. If you are already listed, you are registered with Kern Community Foundation and are eligible to receive our services.

If your agency’s name does not appear in the Nonprofit Search, complete this two-step process:

1) Use this link to access our Online Grant PlatformOnce there, create an account using your e-mail address and a password. Fill out information about yourself as an applicant, as well as about your agency. When you get to the Applicant Dashboard, click on the hyperlink for “Apply” at the very top of the page next to the home icon. On the application choices page, choose “Nonprofit Registration for Foundation Services.” Fill out the online registration form and submit.

2) Visit GuideStar.org to confirm your nonprofit’s Transparency Rating using your agency’s name or EIN (Tax ID) number. Acceptable ratings for agencies registering with Kern Community Foundation are Silver, Gold and Platinum only. If your agency profile page on GuideStar.org doesn’t have a rating, or has only a Bronze rating, you must upgrade your rating to a minimum Silver level for your registration with the Foundation to be approved.

The Support option in the menu at the top of the GuideStar home page has easy-to-use tools to guide you from claiming your agency’s profile to building it up through the transparency levels: from Bronze to Silver to Gold to Platinum. Remember, Kern Community Foundation only requires a minimum Silver level.

Proactively Creating Long-Term Stability through the Foundation

Through an Agency Fund with the Foundation, community organizations can set aside funds to increase long-term stability, plan for future growth or add to the organization’s credibility with key donors. When you partner with the Foundation, we work closely with the leadership of your organization to help establish a fund that supports your goals for today and in the future. As an additional benefit, the Foundation handles the administration of the fund, leaving your staff and board free to focus on what matters – your mission on behalf of the community.

Questions? Write to us at info@kernfoundation.org or call 661.325.5346.

Community Events

  1. Free IRS Webinar: How to Apply for Tax Exemption

    June 23 @ 10:00 am - 11:00 am
  2. Free Webinar: Improve Your Smartphone Photography Part 2

    June 30 @ 10:00 am - 12:00 pm