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River Counties Community Foundation celebrates 25 years

Mason Brent grew up and built his career in Richmond but spent weekends and summers throughout his life at his family’s farm in Heathsville. Upon retirement, he moved to the farm where he now enjoys the perks of small-town life – beautiful scenery, friendly people, and a slower pace. It is also where he got involved in serving on boards of local nonprofits and began to recognize what a force for good the River Counties Community Foundation (RCCF) is for the region.  

“In a rural environment, you can see the need as you go about your regular activities, but you can also see where philanthropy is making a difference,” said Mason, who is now a board member for RCCF. “I’ve seen a lot of changes in the community over the years, but the creation and growth of RCCF has been among the most consequential to leveraging the generosity of our community to be a perpetual source of funding across all areas of need.”

Established in 1996 as an affiliate of the Community Foundation for a greater Richmond, River Counties Community Foundation became part of a national movement to expand the community foundation model into rural communities. Within five years, the Mathews and Gloucester Community Foundations were created to further expand reach into the Middle Peninsula and Northern Neck.

Margaret Nost, who has served as the Regional Affiliate Director for nearly 20 years, notes, “Small communities like ours do not have the same breadth of resources as our urban and suburban counterparts. Our strength comes from the dedication and leadership of our board volunteers, the trust and generosity of our donors, organizational support from our Richmond colleagues, and a caring community that sees the value of coming together to support one another. We’ve created something very special that will have ripple effects for generations to come.”

Over time, RCCF has been able to substantially grow its assets, grants and relationships to create greater impact in Northumberland, Lancaster and Middlesex Counties. The evidence is all around – from improved technology infrastructure for a community with limited access to the internet, to creative and collaborative nonprofit partnerships, to the availability of responsive funding in times of crisis.   

This month Mason hosted a 25th anniversary celebration at his farm to honor and thank RCCF partners and supporters who are Together.Stronger. On behalf of the Richmond team, we congratulate RCCF on its success thus far and look forward to continuing this journey with you in the years to come. 

To help celebrate this occasion with a gift to the RCCF Together.Stronger campaign, please click here.