For more than thirty years, the Parkersburg Area Community Foundation & Regional Affiliates (PACF) has joined its peers nationwide to celebrate November 12 - 18 as National Community Foundations Week. Created in 1989 by President George H.W. Bush, this week recognizes the important work of community foundations across America, and coincides with National Philanthropy Day, November 15.

The PACF is a permanent charitable foundation founded in 1963 that serves the citizens of Calhoun, Doddridge, Gilmer, Jackson, Mason, Pleasants, Ritchie, Roane, Wirt, and Wood counties in West Virginia, and Washington County, Ohio. It is among a select group that is accredited as in compliance with the National Standards for Community Foundations. Accreditation assures the public and the PACF’s supporters that the Foundation has sound policies and practices that assure accountability.

“The PACF’s deep knowledge of local needs paired with the many wonderful partnerships that we have with generous area citizens and businesses, provides a giving and granting infrastructure for our community that is built to last,” said Judy Sjostedt Ritchie, PACF’s Executive Director. “We work daily with good people who want to make a difference in the lives of their fellow citizens through their giving.”

Community foundations are independent public charities. This past year, the PACF granted more than $3 million for a wide array of important causes and programs. While the PACF is best known for partnering with citizens to build long-term charitable funds for the betterment of the Mid-Ohio Valley, it is also flexible and uniquely positioned to serve as a strong community leader.

Since spring of 2020, the PACF has been actively addressing the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. With many families facing financial and food insecurity as unemployment rose, and the region’s nonprofits experiencing increasing demand for services, the PACF and its donors stepped up with leadership and support. PACF enlisted help from local individuals, other funders, and area businesses and nonprofits to determine how to best allocate resources among regional needs and raise additional funds for community concerns. To date, the PACF’s efforts have delivered more than $450,000 to address its four identified COVID-19 Relief community priorities: essential services, financial hardship relief, access to food, and health services.

“Our region is home to some of the most generous and caring people,” said Sjostedt Ritchie. “The PACF does its best to provide area citizens with the greatest value for their support and to return as much as possible for the good of the region. We are very grateful for the support of our region’s citizens—everything we’ve ever done and all we can ever do is the direct result of their generous support.”

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