The donor can donate to a project, or to an existing fund, or can establish a new fund (the alternative to setting up a private foundation) for which they may determine:
- the name and philanthropic objectives;
- the duration (undefined, defined, perpetual) and how, what and when to donate;
- the role they want to have and the individuals who can donate;
- the destination of donations (cash, assets, reserves) and how available assets should be distributed;
- the presence, composition and role of possible committees;
- how any assets should be invested;
- what information should be made public;
- how to handle any changes to the goals and operating procedures of the fund.
In addition, the donor can use the Foundation to test the potential of institutional philanthropy with limited resources, before the possible setting up of their own foundation.