Strategic Priorities

Strategic Priorities

Over three decades, Berkshire Taconic Community Foundation has become a trusted partner to donors and nonprofits with deep local knowledge, broad relationships and considerable resources in place to strengthen our four-county region. As we look to create a more vibrant future for residents, BTCF must simultaneously respond to the highest priority issues, address their root causes and expand the role of philanthropy as a force for change.

We have identified a set of priorities where we believe philanthropy can make a measurable difference, BTCF can provide leadership and opportunities exist to collaborate with our donors, volunteers and other partners for lasting impact.

Educational Attainment

Increase educational attainment across the age continuum, from early childhood through adult learning, as a pathway to greater economic mobility.

Investing in education is a proven pathway to greater economic opportunity and financial security. But a decades-long decline in social mobility has created a stubborn opportunity gap for kids who aspire to attend college but face financial and other barriers. The jobs of today and tomorrow require education beyond high school, and will typically pay more and offer careers with advancement opportunities.

Furthermore, there is a correlation among attaining education beyond high school and earning more, being healthier and achieving higher levels of civic engagement, such as volunteering and voting.

  • Early literacy among young children improves
  • More youth with college aspirations overcome obstacles to achieve education beyond high school through certificate and degree programs
  • More adults complete degree and certificate programs that help them more fully participate in the economy


Community Engagement

Increase involvement, foster connections and harness the skills and expertise people can bring to organizations and communities.

Involvement in communities or organizations provides opportunities for people to act individually or collectively to address an issue or solve a problem by offering their time, skills and expertise. Research also shows that relationships and networks are strengthened through involvement in nonprofits, community initiatives or service to local government.

In turn, those relationships and resources create far-reaching benefits, contributing to higher levels of trust and reciprocity among residents.

  • Levels of involvement in the arts and creative process increase among year-round residents and organizations
  • More people are engaged in service and leadership activities in their communities and through organizations


Economic Opportunity

Strengthen entrepreneurship and the conditions that allow the economy to grow and residents to prosper.

The need for high-quality jobs with career opportunities remains a primary concern for residents. While philanthropy is not an engine of job creation, it can play a vital role in bringing partners together to develop strategies that improve the conditions for economic and business growth. It can also support the development of promising sectors by contributing to the development of a qualified workforce, and helping connect mentors with business experience to entrepreneurs seeking to expand their business ventures.

  • Jobs are created in new enterprises and small businesses because of greater access to capital and technical assistance


Philanthropic Stewardship

Increase the effectiveness of Berkshire Taconic Community Foundation as a philanthropic institution.

We will continue to invest in our capacity in order to advance our strategic priorities, provide exemplary donor service, manage our core work and allow for continued growth of the foundation’s assets, impact and influence.

Contribute to this work with a gift to the Community Fund


We hosted a webinar to discuss these priorities in April 2018. The webinar featured a review of current activities, along with a preview of new work already underway to support our efforts to build a stronger region.

Watch the webinar


A community assessment process helped BTCF learn more about the pressing issues facing our region. Working with a research partner, we held a dozen focus groups, launched four online surveys and reviewed existing data and reports. An interactive website and a comprehensive report resulted from that process.

Visit  Read the Report  Watch the Webinar


Photo by John Dolan