In the name of love

You can warm the heart of friends and family during the holiday season by giving to help others in the name of loved ones.

That’s part of the alternative gift-giving option of the annual Grant A Wish program from The Heritage Fund: The Community Foundation of Bartholomew County. The program that runs through Dec. 19 this year has totaled more than $260,000 in donations to area nonprofits over the past six years, according to Heritage Fund organizers.

That overall total includes a record $60,241 last year. Organizers say they would like to top that this year.

“As your community foundation, Heritage Fund is committed to raising awareness of community needs,” said Kristen Munn, Heritage Fund’s director of development. “Grant A Wish 2016 offers a wonderful opportunity to shop for gifts that will make a difference in the life of an adult, a child or an animal.”

Grant A Wish, launched in 2010, operates simply. Local nonprofit organizations submit wishes to be fulfilled in estimated dollar amounts.

This year’s 129 wishes from 49 organizations represent needs or items that will allow them to better serve the community. Heritage Fund compiles this list and shares it online at so people can donate to make the wishes come true.

Some examples:

A gift of $20 can help the Bartholomew County Historical Society preserve artifacts.

A total of $100 can help the Columbus Area Arts Council with arts-education programs.

A donation of $30 can cover two parasite-prevention treatments on an animal at the Bartholomew County Humane Society.

Jane Irwin, the humane society’s shelter manager, said that besides the direct financial boost, the program consistently has helped build awareness of the agency’s year-long needs because it has led many donors to check out details on the society’s website.

“People later have frequently told us, ‘I never knew you also regularly need office supplies,’” Irwin said.

Wishes submitted to Grant A Wish include, but are not limited to, enabling children to participate in camps and music programs; providing proper nutrition to animals in need; and furthering community betterment in Bartholomew County.

Elwood Staffing and MainSource Bank team with the Heritage Fund locally match donations dollar-for-dollar up to $30,000 total. Heritage Fund will match up to $500 per individual gift or $1,000 per couple/family/group, with a cap of $3,000 for each organization.


[sc:pullout-title pullout-title=”How to give with Grant A Wish” ][sc:pullout-text-begin]

  • Go to
  • Click on the Grant A Wish logo.
  • Scroll through and choose a wish or wishes to fulfill.
  • Complete the information on the Heritage Fund site for the donation amount and information about a gift card.