Leading Change. Transforming Communities.



We support and a coordinate a number of targeted and collaborative initiatives and programs that are working to make Essex County a better place to live, work and raise a family.

For ECCF, improving the quality of life is about drawing nonprofit, civic and philanthropic leaders in the county together to create a strong, effective plan to deliver lasting change in the areas where Essex County has challenges.

County-wide Inititatives

Impact Essex County

Launched in early 2016, Impact Essex County will be the focus of ECCF’s community leadership efforts over the next decade.  Through this effort, ECCF will gather, analyze and present data to help us identify critical issues facing our county, and raise funding and gather partners to address and solve our most pressing needs. Learn more...

Essex County Hunger Relief Project

Created immediately following the economic downtown in 2008, the Essex County Hunger Relief Project helps hunger organizations find the supplies and funding they need to meet the demand for services, and provides a directory of food resources by town for those in need of food assistance. Learn more...

Creative County Initiative

In partnership with the Barr Foundation, ECCF’s Creative County Initiative seeks to enhance the quality of life in Essex County and increase the vibrancy of our communities by investing in the transformative power of arts and culture. Coming soon...

Teaching the Leaders

Institute for Trustees

ECCF is committed to helping to strengthen the ability of nonprofit organizations to serve our communities.  The IFT, our annual full-day conference for nonprofit board members and executive directors, provides education, training and networking opportunities for those who lead these organizations. Learn more...


The Community Foundation's NextGen initiative works to educate and engage the next generation of philanthropists. Learn more...

Community Leadership Funds

Our Community Leadership Funds are special Collaborative Field of Interest Funds focusing on community needs, as well as Funds that support special focus areas of the Community Foundation. A number of these accept grant applications from nonprofit organizations in the region, and all welcome donations to support the important work they do. See Community Leadership Funds to learn more.