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ST THOMAS — Since 1990, The Community Foundation of the Virgin Islands (CFVI) has operated as a philanthropic organization managing a permanent collection of funds and essential programs and services to benefit the citizens of the USVI. The organization was created to serve both donors and nonprofit organizations of the Virgin Islands that want to ensure the highest quality of life for present and future generations. Its primary goal is to build a collection of permanent funds, which will be used to enhance the educational, physical, social, cultural, and environmental well-being of the children, youth, and families of the Virgin Islands. To date, CFVI has established named funds with over $10 million in endowed assets and more than $3 million in annual grants, awards, and scholarships throughout the U.S. Virgin Islands.

“The best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of others.” — Mahatma Gandhi

CFVI is governed by an independent, all-volunteer board of directors whose members are drawn from citizens who are deeply involved in the Virgin Islands community. The responsibility of CFVI board of directors is to establish and govern all foundation policies with respect to operations, investments, and grants. Thanks to generous annual donations of $500 from CFVI Angels, the largest philanthropic network in the territory, the organization’s programs, operating costs, and much of their community outreach are covered. For almost 25 years, Angels have provided a total of $7.5 million in unrestricted funding from individual and business donors.

CFVI awards grant funds to address pressing community needs, support ongoing activities, and provide opportunities to enhance the lives of community members. Grants include The Rapid Response Fund, which provides grants to families faced with unexpected financial emergencies, and Hodge Senior Citizens Assistance Fund, which provides funding to senior citizens aged 60+ in need of emergency assistance.

Their primary focus around education is to provide scholarships to USVI students pursuing degrees in higher education. The 2023-2024 academic scholarship cycle awarded $178,455 in scholarships to 63 students. A review committee of 26 individuals reviewed 205 applications and made recommendations based on the specific criteria for each scholarship. Undergraduate scholarships range from $1000 to $3000, and graduate scholarships range from $2500 to $5000. The newest scholarship created and funded under CFVI was the Lawyers’ Scholarship, which was established in 2022 by former St. Croix attorneys Lisa Harris Moorhead and Susan Bastress. The Fund, which awards up to two scholarships of $5000 each, was set up to provide scholarship assistance to eligible Virgin Islands residents planning to attend law school, with priority given to St. Croix residents with limited financial resources.

Visit to learn more about this amazing organization and the tireless work they put in to support the U.S. Virgin Islands community. There are numerous ways to support their work through donations, volunteering, establishing a fund, and much more.

Written by Anquanette Gaspard