Prime the Pump Fund offers new opportunities

SIDNEY — A unique charitable fund will help the Community Foundation of Shelby County spur initiatives and support necessary projects. The Prime the Pump Fund was created by an anonymous donor to honor the memory of Alma Wilson Allinger and Robert Lochard Allinger.

The fund’s name relates to childhood memories of the water well pump on the donor’s grandparent’s farm. In those days, a pump needed a little water added to the valve to prime it. Once primed, the pump operated better and produced volumes of water in excess of the amount used to prime the pump. Similarly, the Community Foundation is primed to initiate efforts when it has the resources to make all parts of a project come together.

“The Foundation does a wonderful job and the staff sees so much that could be done,” said the anonymous donor. “I believe they should be on the cutting edge of things that need to be accomplished. My hope is that this fund is a catalyst that will generate significant additional monies which will, in turn, bring forth significant important new initiatives to support the people and future of Shelby County – beyond the value of the priming.”

Motivation for creating the new fund came from the donor’s ancestors who were active in civic groups and community events. It is intended that the fund is a resource to support causes or aspects of a project that are necessary, but may not be as attractive to other donors. Additional donors to the fund are encouraged, and further recognition is available and welcomed by the fund’s originator.

“The Prime the Pump Fund gives the Community Foundation an opportunity to seek out emerging local issues and opportunities,” said Marian Spicer, executive director. “Things like Match Day and Skills Scholarships were once unknown and it was difficult to gain support at their beginnings. Going forward, we are grateful to have a resource to pursue other new initiatives.”

The Community Foundation of Shelby County administers charitable funds that help donors give to community needs and favorite charities now and in the future. To learn more, view their website at or contact Jessica Fortkamp, Donor Relations director at 937-497-7800.