A foundation is a legal categorization of nonprofit organizations that will typically either donate funds and support to other organizations, or provide the source of funding for its own charitable purposes.This type of non-profit organization differs from a private foundation which is typically endowed by an individual or family.DescriptionOne of the characteristics of the legal entities existing under the status of "Foundations", is a wide diversity of structures and purposes. Nevertheless, there are some common structural elements that are the first observed under legal scrutiny or classification. Legal requirements followed for establishment Purpose of the foundation Economic activity Supervision and management provisions Accountability and Auditing provisions Provisions for the amendment of the statutes or articles of incorporation Provisions for the dissolution of the entity Tax status of corporate and private donors Tax status of the foundation Some of the above must be, in most jurisdictions, expressed in the document of establishment. Others may be provided by the supervising authority at each particular jurisdiction.EuropeThere is no commonly accepted legal definition in Europe for a foundation. There is a proposal for a European Foundation, a legal form that would be recognised throughout Europe, see European Foundation Project.Foundations in civil lawThe term "foundation," in general, is used to describe a distinct legal entity.Foundations as legal structures (legal entities) and/or legal persons (legal personality), may have a diversity of forms and may follow diverse regulations depending on the jurisdiction where they are created.