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The kind of gift that keeps giving

An endowment makes for a sustained impact
June 15, 2016
By Silvia Ugolini

While on a trip to Italy in 1884, the only child of Leland and Jane Stanford succumbed to typhoid fever. Heartbroken at their loss, Leland founded Stanford University with a large endowment, saying to his wife in consolation: “The children of California shall be our children.”

students An endowment can support students directly through scholarships or any number of other areas of the university, such as libraries or public lectures.

Being a wealthy industrialist isn’t a prerequisite for creating a poignant legacy or tribute. While the limit varies, a named endowment can be established at many non-profits for a modest sum. This kind of gift preserves the donor’s name or the name of a loved one.

How does it work?

An endowment is set aside in perpetuity. The capital itself remains untouched, while the annual payout is put toward advancing your cause. This ensures your gift will serve a meaningful purpose in a lasting way. Examples of what you could support include scholarships, bursaries, public lectures and research.

In talking to people, I always encourage them to create a plan that aligns with their personal goals. An endowment is a way of enabling future generations to grow in areas you care about. You can create one through a regular charitable contribution and through a planned giving strategy.


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