Achieving Today. Sustaining for the Future.
The Health Foundation Fund

About the Fund

    Nearly all the healthcare conversion foundations across the country were converted from health plans or hospitals to private foundations.  However, when it converted from Central Mass Health Care, Inc., a non-for-profit HMO, The Health Foundation of Central Massachusetts, Inc. intentionally sought to retain the plan’s tax exempt status as a 501 (c)(4) in order to retain the capacity to lobby.   Private foundations are prohibited from lobbying.   The Foundation’s capacity to lobby has been strategically woven into its grantmaking, most notably in the Health Care & Health Promotion Synergy Initiative, where advocacy and lobbying are expected to secure sustainability of the projects.    

    A negative aspect of the 501 (c)(4) tax status is that contributions to it are not tax deductible. Because the Board of the Foundation anticipated that as the Foundation’s grantmaking became well known, individuals or corporations would seek to make charitable contributions to it, the Foundation created The Health Foundation Fund, Inc. in 2000 as a 501 (c)(3) fundraising affiliate to support the purpose and mission of the Foundation through donations, memorial contributions and gifts of life insurance.  While the fundraising capability of the Fund has not as yet been widely marketed, it has received charitable contributions over the years to augment the foundation's grantmaking. For example, reflective of the Foundation’s early grantmaking focus on oral health, two named funds (i.e., the Dr. Leo and Irma Berg Memorial Fund and the Gusha Family Oral Health Fund) have been established.  In addition, five Foundation Directors and staff have enabled the Fund to own life insurance policies on them, and they provide contributions to cover the annual premiums.  The total value of these life insurance policies is $1,800,000.