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The Gahanna Foundation

Nice to meet you!

What we’re all about.

The Gahanna Foundation (TGF) was established in July of 2018 to pursue two lanes of civic-minded philanthropy: The first lane focused on projects directly or indirectly related to the Gahanna Sanctuary; the second lane focused on other “worthwhile neighborhood projects.”

TGF’s flagship project — that transformed the historic 1895 Gothic style bell tower in Olde Downtown Gahanna‘s into the community’s tallest and now brightest landmark — was successful fueled with cash donations from 55 donors, including Wesbanco and American Electric Power. The bell tower when illuminated is a lantern of electric art that visitors and locals can appreciate for its contribution to civic espri de corp. An additional project funded lighting street trees on North High Street to compliment the bell tower at night.

After three years working on Sanctuary related projects — during which time TGF raised and transferred over $12,000 in grant dollars to turn the once-dark Peace Lutheran Church into Gahanna’s most recognized historic community landmark — TGF has pivoted to seeking other worthwhile neighborhood projects now that the Sanctuary is profitable.

The Gahanna Foundation has expanded its impressive track record to include the following second lane projects: Sponsorship roles in two Westside cleanup events; Being a pioneering sponsor with ASCO and OCALI of “Band Together Central Ohio,” a monthly event that showcases autistic community performers, and “Red, White and Blues Block Party,” TGF’s yearly fundraiser.

The current civic-minded project TGF is pursuing — “Democracy Challenge” — evolved from “GahannaVotes,” a voter registration event created in 2022 that featured a “Democracy Classroom and Fair,” made possible with partners including Ohio Secretary of State, Franklin County Board of Elections, Gahanna Branch Library, League of Women Voters Metropolitan Columbus and the Community Refugee and Immigration Service.

“Democracy Challenge” is a new and novel, 3-year pilot project designed to boost registered voters and election participation in 15 cities in Franklin County. “DC23” contacted 252 candidates certified by the Franklin County Board of Elections for the November 7th and asked them to accept the challenge, which included three easy, cost-free options to promote and advocate for democracy. The most novel of the three options being the incorporation of the “Vow of Democracy” into meeting protocol following the “Pledge of Allegiance.” “DC24” is underway now, as it redirects TGFs time, energy and fiscal resources on Ohio’s next election on March 19th.

When these small, affordable projects that deliver a big community impact are combined with TGFs multi-year “Democracy Challenge 2024” and a Forecasted Project to redesign Gahanna’s city flag next year, improving the quality of life in Gahanna and across Franklin County, will hopefully charm and inspire other public and private partners to seek avenues of collaboration and partnership.

To learn more about TGF’s past project history and projects on its future radar, and to contribute, please visit our website.

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