Myths & Misconceptions

Myth: CICF only works with high net worth families.

Reality: We make it easy to contribute as little – or as much – as you wish, and any dollar amount can be donated to benefit the community or a specific organization through a fund at CICF. While we do require a $25,000 minimum to create a fund, CICF offers dozens of organizations and field-of-interest areas that can be supported by your clients through a restricted gift to CICF.


Myth: Donors can only open endowment funds at CICF.

Reality: Our “non-permanent” funds provide the ultimate in flexibility by having 100 percent of the fund’s assets available for distribution.


Myth: CICF must invest all its charitable assets, therefore, my client can’t use his/her investment manager.

Reality: Our goal is to serve as a valuable and appropriate contributor and member to financial advisement teams. The reality is investment managers don’t have to lose their client’s book of business by opening a fund at CICF, and we have many arrangements with fund holders to maintain investment management outside of our standard investment accounts.


Myth: My clients have to live in Hamilton or Marion County to work with CICF.

Reality: There is no geographical limitation for CICF donors or fund holders.


Myth: CICF donors and fund holders can only give to qualified organizations in Hamilton or Marion County.

Reality: Distributions from funds can be made to any qualified not-for-profit organization in the United States. And many of our donors give internationally through a qualified U.S. 501(c)3 organization.


Myth: CICF has its own agenda and “tells” donors and fund holders where to make contributions.

Reality: CICF encourages donors and fund holders to follow their passions, and give where those passions lie. While we do make our own grants and have our own giving priorities, we do not influence donors and fund holders to give where we give.

Myth: Since CICF’s Board has to approve all distributions from funds, there’s a chance that my grants won’t be honored.

Reality: The only time CICF’s staff or board will not approve a grant is if it is illegal or if it might be detrimental to our own 501(c)3 status.

Myth: Donors can’t give to religious organizations.

Reality: Distributions from funds can be made to any qualified not-for-profit organization in the United States, including faith-based organizations.

Myth: Donors and fund holders can’t have their children or grandchildren involved.

Reality: Nothing could be further from the truth! CICF encourages families to be engaged in multi-generational philanthropy and actually has trained-experts on staff to work with various family structures and compositions.