In 1998, members of the Garden Grove City Council, community, and business leaders came together with a common goal: to create an organization that would enhance the quality of life for Garden Grove residents and businesses. Out of their efforts came the Garden Grove Community Foundation (GGCF). Founded as a 501 (c)3 non-profit organization, the Foundation helped to create a better image of Garden Grove, regionally, showcasing this community’s unique features, its diversity, and economic progress.
The founding Board Members for the GGCF worked to lay the groundwork for a program to support the mission and goals of the organization.
The program, originally named Renaissance Garden Grove, provided free summer concerts and Food for Thought programs to the community. In 2005, the Renaissance Garden Grove name was replaced with the GGCF name to avoid confusion and establish a permanent identity in the community.
Since the 1990’s, Garden Grove has transformed itself from a bedroom community to a growing and dynamic city with a population of close to 172,000 residents. Garden Grove is one of the most culturally diverse cities in Orange County, with approximately one-third each of equal representation of Latino, Asian, and Caucasian residents.
The GGCF has tried to help in this transformation. In 2000, the Foundation built and dedicated the Main Street Brick Walkway in historic downtown Garden Grove. In 2002, the GGCF added a 45-foot tall clock tower north of Main Street named the Tower on the Green. The Tower is located in the city’s oldest park, the Village Green. Both projects were funded by private donations and after completion, dedicated to the residents of Garden Grove.
In 2013, the Garden Grove Community Foundation celebrated it's 15th Anniversary. Foundation Board and staff participated in a visioning workshop in order to confirm the Foundation's mission and direction and build consensus around initiatives and activities to pursue during the next 10 to 15 years. Based on the discussion, the Foundation developed a new Mission/Vision Statement:
"The Garden Grove Community Foundation will improve the quality-of-life in our community by providing opportunities for people of all ages and cultures to gather together."
The Garden Grove Community Foundation is proud to have been a part of this transformation and will continue to be a part of this thriving city for many years to come.