In 1997, realizing communities throughout Northeast Mississippi have ongoing needs and special projects that would benefit from local philanthropy, CREATE extended its endowment building efforts by establishing the Community Affiliates program.
CREATE provides a $100,000 challenge grant to each upstart Community Affiliate, which must raise $200,000 in unrestricted endowed funds to receive the grant. These endowed funds, raised and allocated by local people, provide permanent assets to address local community needs and issues. CREATE Foundation currently has 13 Community Affiliates at work in their counties.
Community Affiliates are led by a local board made up of community leaders. The Affiliate manages its own independent grant cycle and makes local grants determined to be important in improving the quality of life in that county. CREATEs Community Affiliate program brings together the best thinking leadership to meet community concerns.