Community Foundation Training

In addition to CF Boot Camps held multiple times a year in Indiana, IPA offers community foundation training at your location or virtually.


Invest in yourself with a guide to everything your foundation does and can do in the community.

Community Foundation Boot Camp is a comprehensive overview of the structure and operations of a community foundation. Trainers work with local hosts, which include community foundations and philanthropy-supporting organizations, to deliver a multi-day, 12-hour workshop with robust curriculum. CF Boot Camp is also offered as an accelerated course called CF Basics, and can be tailored for each audience. View our full curriculum here.

No matter their role or tenure within the foundation, CF Boot Camp provides tactical information every staff and board member should know, covering the following topics.

  • Community Foundation Overview
  • Governance
  • Fund Management
  • Asset Development
  • Finance and Investments
  • Grantmaking & Community Leadership
  • Operational Sustainability
  • Community Foundation Lifecycles

Experienced Trainers

CF Boot Camp is conducted by a team of experienced trainers—all of whom have led successful community foundations. For more than 25 years, IPA has housed a dedicated program that offers technical assistance and training to over 90 community foundations in Indiana. IPA now brings this expertise to community foundations across the United States.


  • In-Person or Virtual, Full CF Boot Camp (12 hours, 3+ trainers)
    This option is ideal for groups of foundations with at least 30 participants.
  • In-Person or Virtual, CF Basics (6 hours, 1+ trainer)
    This option is ideal for single foundations or small groups with under 30 participants.

Trainings each cover the standard curriculum delivered by expert trainers, as well as resourse books for each attendee. IPA trainers are happy to work with hosts to customize program content for an additional fee. Each host is responsible for providing and managing their workshop's registrations and accommodations, including event promotion, venue, catering, and name tags. 

Become a CF Boot Camp Host

For information about bringing CF Boot Camp to your community, please contact Rosemary Dorsa at or call 317-630-5200 x114. We will work with you to develop a workshop best suited for your unique audience.

Subscribe for Exclusive Invites 

Go here to sign up for exclusive invites to IPA community foundation trainings and offerings.


“I can now answer questions donors might have quickly, correctly, and with confidence.”

Community Foundation of Grant County, Indiana

“A great opportunity to learn a variety of tried and true strategies from colleagues in the field.”

Community Foundation of the Gunnison Valley, Colorado

“Bootcamp should be a requirement for all foundation employees.”

LaGrange County Community Foundation, Indiana

Over 80% of my current board attended this training and they were so glad they did!”

Benton Community Foundation, Indiana

“I learned things I didn’t know about community foundations, but more importantly, I learned what we are doing well.”

Community Foundation of Macon County, Illinois


Unit 1: Community Foundation Overview
Definition, roles, history

National Standards

IRS Code and tax exempt orgs

Key legal concepts Key legal documents  
Unit 2: Fund Management
Definition of component fund

Types of funds

Fund agreements

Fund management issues Community project funds/fiscal sponsorship Donor relations re funds
Variance power UPMIFA code Making changes to funds
Unit 3: Governance
Key legal concepts in governance

Governance vs. management

Unique challenges of CF boards

Board leadership Board orientation and education Board member and exec roles
Strategic planning Triple A board roles – ambassador, advocate, asker  
Unit 4: Asset Development
Types of gifts/planned gifts

Asset building vs. fundraising

Working with professional advisors

Donor characteristics Donor stewardship and engagement Policies and planning
Unit 5: Finance & Investments
Understanding fiscal responsibility

Investment/Finance/Audit  committee(s)

Investment policy/spending policy

Working with investment professionals Asset allocation UPMIFA
Investment request-for-proposal Fund accounting Financial statements vs. audit
Financial reports to board Operating budget Reporting
Audit Tax compliance – Form 990

Public support test

Unit 6: Grantmaking & Community Leadership
Grant guidelines and processes

Responsive and strategic grantmaking

Legal issues in grantmaking

Expenditure responsibility Scholarship grants Types of community leadership
Unit 7: Operational Sustainability
Sustainable revenue sources

Asset-expense mismatch

Fund types as products

Fee model of CFs Calculating your sustainability Developing a sustainability plan
Ideas to improve sustainability    
Unit 8: Community Foundation Lifecycles
Major influences in the development of community foundations

Growth cycles of community foundations

Future challenges