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Beckley Area Foundation celebrates opening of new location


As the organization celebrated the opening its new location on South Kanawha Street on...
As the organization celebrated the opening its new location on South Kanawha Street on Thursday, WVVA News got an inside look at how the organization works to lift up the surrounding community.(wvva)
Published: Jun. 23, 2022 at 3:58 PM EDT
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BECKLEY, W.Va. (WVVA) - For 26 years, the Beckley Area Foundation (BAF) has quietly worked behind the scenes to lift up local non-profits, charities, and schools. As the organization celebrated the opening its new location on South Kanawha Street on Thursday, WVVA News got an inside look at how the organization works.

According to Dena Cushman, a significant part of the organization’s charitable work is a nearly 60 million dollar fund. As contributions are made to that fund, the organization donates the interest. Last year, the foundation gave away 1.6 million in grants and scholarships.

“The donations that are given to us are invested and we spend the growth on those investments. They’re permanent endowments. They’ll be here forever.”

Local teachers, non-profits, and other charitable organizations can submit a grant application for funding.

But the organization also manages many other funds separately.

“We have a lot of funds started for specific organizations such as the United Way or Women’s Resource Center for example. We oversee 500 different endowments.”

For example, when the Pandemic hit, President Doug Ramsden said the organization set up a relief fund that enabled contributions of $120,000 to 43 different non-profits and food banks.

“It was just an incredible opportunity. Through COVID, we feel like we oversaw the needs of the community with that.”

To learn more about the organization’s work, visit BECKLEY AREA FOUNDATION - LOCAL GIVING. LASTING LEGACIES. - Home (bafwv.org)

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