Montanans will transfer billions of dollars to the next generation. The question is: will any of that wealth stay behind in the communities that helped build it?

On the Hi-Line, the Valley County Community Foundation (VCCF) seeks to ensure Valley County’s bright future as a steward of community savings, through which private assets (entrusted by donors) are invested to meet the challenges of contemporary life. VCCF is the guardian of a permanent endowment, used to help fund economic, cultural, and charitable projects.

Since 2000, VCCF has granted more than $225,000 to local projects. Several grants have assisted Valley County schools in making improvements to facilities and programming. (For example, $1,500 fully funded training for a Glasgow Middle School teacher’s certification in the STEM design and modeling curriculum.) Other grants have gone to local institutions, such as cafes and senior centers, which are invaluable assets in their communities.

In addition to grants, VCCF has also distributed more than $36,000 in scholarships through the Feda Scholarship for the Trades. Established in 2007 by Gerald and Audrey Feda of Glasgow, this scholarship is awarded to students interested in post-secondary education in the trades.

According to the Montana Community Foundation, if only a small portion of the wealth which is to be handed down to the next generation—say 5 percent—were protected in permanent charitable endowments, millions of dollars would be available each year to invest in communities.

Following this methodology, VCCF works to make communities across Valley County the types of places Montanans love to call home.

For more information, visit valleycountycf.net or call (406) 526-3245.