About Community Shares

About Community SharesOur vision is for Community Shares to be a fund for social change groups throughout the State of Tennessee.

  • Community Shares is a federation of Tennessee based community groups who have joined together to raise money cooperatively for their programs.
  • Community Shares was organized in April, 1985 by four East Tennessee groups, in an effort to increase their revenues from individuals and lessen their dependence upon foundation grants.
  • The membership has grown each year to include groups across the state.
  • Community Shares has 501 (C)(3) tax status which means donors to Community Shares can deduct their contribution on their federal income tax form.
  • With Community Shares you are part of a track record of remarkable results.


  • Assist over a quarter of a million women and children involved in domestic violence situations
  • Provide housing, food and support groups to 8000 people affected by HIV/AIDS and educate 30,000 people about the causes and effects of AIDS.
  • Introduce the art, music, theater, and dance traditions of various cultures to over 100,000 children.
  • Educate over 13,000 children and adults about the humane treatment of animals.
  • Recycle 5 million pounds of paper, saving the equivalent of over half a million trees.
  • Clean 8000 miles of Tennessee Streams and Rivers.


Community Shares is dedicated to supporting Tennessee social change organizations in order to promote a more just and caring community. Its purpose is to raise funds for its member groups, primarily through employee giving campaigns, to foster a strong and viable network of social change organizations in Tennessee, and to provide members with training and technical assistance.


We believe there is a grossly inequitable distribution of wealth, resources and power, which leads to major gaps between rich and poor, and a poor quality of life for the majority. We believe significant change happens when we address these problems at the systems and institutional levels, as well as at the individual levels. Additionally, we believe that the people being affected by a problem should be involved in the decisions and problem-solving processes.


Community Shares defines social change as work which: promotes a more equitable distribution of resources, wealth, and power; gives people the tools to act together to affect change on a systems level; eliminates the social, economic, cultural, and political barriers that keep people from fully participating in society; and promotes respect for the environment and its sustainability.