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Number of community foundations: 17 (2024)
Oldest community foundation: Fondation de Lille (1997)
Population: 68,1 million (2023, Eurostat)

French Foundation Center (Centre Français des Fonds et Fondations)

The French Foundation Center was established in 2002. Its mission is to support and develop endowment funds and foundations in France through different actions including advocacy, seminars, publications, and field trips. The CFF has pioneered the transposition of the community foundation concept in France through workshops since 2008 and a publication in 2013, interpreting “community” in a geographical way, more appropriate to the French culture and reality. Community foundation is not a legal status in France, but a way of acting with and for a territory.

The current development is dynamic throughout the country. It is difficult for the organisation to give a precise number of community foundations. There is a wide interest by public institutions like municipalities due to shrinking public subventions. This launched a debate on how, in this context, the concept of community foundations should be developed as a private tool that is independent of politics.

Fondation de France

Established in 1969 Fondation de France acts in many ways like a national community foundation. In particular it plays a role in stimulating philanthropy and in hosting donor advised and community foundations.