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Are you ready? How can you tell if your organization ready for a proactive legacy giving program?

Today’s quiz will focus on what you need to be ready for legacy giving at your organization. In case you are unsure about what I’m referring to, legacy giving, (also known as planned giving,) is a particular kind of fundraising: inviting your existing donors to consider leaving a gift to your organization in their will or estate plans. This kind of giving is a way for a donor to take what is important to them now and extend that far into the future, leaving a legacy that matters. Read more

Are you ready? How can you tell if your organization is ready for a proactive legacy giving program?

Legacy giving, or planned giving, is a particular kind of fundraising: inviting your existing donors to consider leaving a gift to your organization in their will or estate plans. This kind of giving is a way for a donor to take what is important to them now and extend that far into the future, leaving a legacy that matters. Read more

A recent blog suggested that the multitrillion dollar inheritance from one generation to the next was really an illusion. The author said his organization has not seen a great spike in bequests, despite being well into the Havens and Schervish report’s time-frame for that projected $41 trillion. He had done the numbers for both his organization and his area and concluded the windfall was not there.

Is it an illusion? Not according to many. Institution after institution receives bequests from people that are not in their donor database. Support has come without a meeting with the fundraiser or an identifiable ask. But, we ask, is legacy giving worth it? Are bequests on the rise? Are people living longer? After the economic downturn(s), will there be enough in the estates to fulfill the bequests?

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I’ve been meeting my mother at the ferry terminal when she comes home from work. It’s a long commute for her, but she’s been making “ferry friends” and, on this occasion, introduced me to one of her neighbours whom she met on the boat that day.

As we all started up the hill together, he asked me what I do. (It’s a short walk home, but pretty much all uphill.) I told him about Tiny Frog Strategies and then accidentally slipped into industry language, saying that we focus on planned giving.

“What’s that?” he asked. Read more

When I think about leaving a legacy, one of the first things that comes to mind is an article from a magazine in the 1990s that talked about a $1 trillion inheritance windfall for Canadians. The article suggested baby boomers in the US stood to inherit $10 trillion dollars over the next several decades. Canadians, the article mused, would inherit $1 trillion. The estimate was later updated in 1999 by a study from Center on Wealth and Philanthropy of Boston College. Schervish and Haven’s report cited the oft quoted $41 trillion as the figure to be passed from one generation to the next in the United States.

The initial article and later research study served to focus my five year quest for a doctorate of ministry in stewardship studies (church fundraising). It also served as a touchstone for a career in fundraising.

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