Key Findings

  • Assets of Southeastern foundations have grown by 60 percent since 2005.

    In 2015, assets for private, community and operating foundations in the 11-state SECF footprint totaled just under $99 billion. Assets have shown steady and increasing growth since the Great Recession.

  • Education remains the leading focus of foundation funding in the Southeast.

    In terms of subject focus, education was the leading recipient of grant dollars awarded by Southeastern foundations in 2015 for each of the 11 Southeast states as well as for the region overall.

  • The majority of giving by Southeastern foundations stays within the region.

    Close to two-thirds of grant dollars awarded in 2015 by the region’s foundations went to recipient organizations located in the Southeast.

  • Of the more than 15,000 active foundations in the region, 86% held assets of $5 million or less in 2015.

    While the Southeast is home to many large and prominent funders, a majority of foundations in the region are smaller in size and more locally focused.

  • Community, corporate and health legacy foundations accounted for close to a third of all foundation giving in in the Southeast in 2015.

    Although these three foundation types made up only 4% of the total number of foundations and held just about a fifth of all foundation assets in the region, they were the source of one out of every three grant dollars awarded.

  • Previous Southern Trends Report

    The 2016 Southern Trends Report provides key data on the growth of Southeastern philanthropy, including trends in the number of foundations, assets and giving over a ten-year period. The report also offers an overview of responses to questions regarding foundations’ grantmaking practices from a 2016 market analysis of the Southeastern Council of Foundations’ membership.