People give for all kinds of reasons, ranging from family tradition, a sense of obligation, an expression of faith, to passionately held beliefs, a drive to “pay it forward” or a feeling of abundance.
Traditional philanthropy often focuses on meeting immediate needs.
While this is very important, I would challenge you to take philanthropy a step farther and think about creating a legacy plan using what I like to call “inspired philanthropy.”
Inspired philanthropy focuses more on cause than effect and can truly change the world.
Begin with your passions and values: what do you care about the most? What do you want to preserve or change during your lifetime or beyond? What kind of support would be needed if you decide to get involved with a cause or organization? Identify the mission, intention and desired outcomes of your giving as specifically as possible.
Remember that you are planning a legacy.
Think about your history of giving. How much do you want to give now or in the future? What will be your lifetime impact? What kind of gift will help you accomplish your philanthropic goals? Reach out to family members, mentors or advisors that can help you get become acquainted with the process of giving gifts.
Learn more about the areas you care about by doing online research, reading their literature and talking to their leaders. Consider volunteer opportunities and evaluate their success as an organization. Are there skills that you need to learn to increase your impact?
Decide what you want to fund and how much to give. Make your gifts with intention. At year’s end, or another time that you designate, review your plan and adjust it if necessary.
If you have children or grandchildren, consider what life lessons you want to teach them. Involve them in the process and let them see how philanthropy makes it possible to affect change. By involving your family, you might just “raise” the next generation of philanthropists.
Developing an inspired legacy plan requires deep thought and consideration but it will be worth it. Few things are as satisfying as helping others. Dream big. You CAN change the world.
Do you have questions about estate planning, planned giving or the Sun Health Foundation? Please call 623.832.5330 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org for additional information.