A couple of days ago I found myself defending the importance of legacy giving. It was during a conversation with someone outside of the fundraising industry, so the easy assumptions I usually make weren’t there to support my case.

“Why is legacy giving important?” she asked.

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Martha (not her real name, of course) had a dream to leave a legacy. She intended that each of her four grandchildren and her favorite charity would receive a substantial benefit when her house was sold. In fact, that was the only reason she was still rattling around in the old barn. Read more

Back to basics series: this post covers the basics of legacy giving. If you’re new around here, you might find it especially helpful. Go ahead and check out back to basics for other articles covering key concepts.

So, what is legacy giving anyways? Read more

Fingers curl with arthritis. Muscle mass disappears faster than a burger from a gobbling teenager’s hand. Minds become so full of what has happened there is no room left to remember what we were doing or why we even entered into the room in the first place.

My mother said, “Getting old is not for the faint of heart.”

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Never in my life have I been able to mystify my children. They saw through all my object lessons, magic tricks and efforts to get them to make healthy choices. We have no grandchildren. There are three grand dogs but no heirs. Our youngest is getting married this month and — while marriage is no longer a prerequisite — no grandchildren are in sight. Read more

I had a great time at the Canadian Association of Gift Planners Conference in Toronto. (You can read what Dad had to say about it here.) I was one of four parent and child combos, where both were professionals attending the conference. That intergenerational thing appears to be catching on, which made me happy. Read more

I once worked with an elderly donor who had a great idea for her legacy. She was in the process of ‘baking’ her legacy when I met her. Read more

I’ve been thinking about philanthropy lately. And if you’re a fund-raiser I’m sure you have too.

I’ve been thinking about more than the day-to-day mechanics of fund-raising, which is often where we get caught up. For example, have you edited the next direct appeal letter yet? Is the data list up to date? Have you responded to the donor who wants to change their credit card number on file? All of these, and many more, are incredibly important necessary details of raising money. Read more