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Planned Giving for Small Nonprofits

Planned giving for many nonprofits seems complicated. Often time you don’t believe it is obtainable or you put off the process as something you will get around to. Sure, if someone leaves a gift in their will, you’ll take it, but many small nonprofits never quite get around to launching planned giving.

Setting up your first planned giving effort can be smooth and painless. For this initial phase forget the lawyers, accountants, legal documents, research… all the things that sound time-consuming and expensive.

The truth is planned giving programs come in various degrees of sophistication and scope. There are limitless types of such programs, which means that virtually any nonprofit can and should have a planned giving effort of some sort.

Defining Planned Giving

Before we go further let’s define planned giving it “is the act of making a commitment to give a charitable organization a major gift, over time or at death, as part of the donor’s overall financial and estate planning.”

So here are some basic steps you can take tomorrow to launch your plan giving program.

1. Have your board approve a board resolution to start an endowment. At that time, the board chair should ask your board members to take the lead by remembering your nonprofit in their will.

2. Launch your planned giving campaign by letting donors know to remember your organization in their will and estate planning. This message should be placed on all your communications — social media, letterhead, thank you cards, website, newsletters, email signature block, business cards, etc. The more you remind your donors that you are seeking planned gifts, the more likely they will be to make them.

3. Then, while your planned giving campaign gains momentum, you can research all of the other forms of planned giving available to your nonprofit.

To help you begin that research check out this Sipping Tea with Sabrina interview on Planned Giving for Nonprofits with James Tabak & Adam Tabak-Moreno Financial Advisors with Hearthstone Wealth.

Planned gifts can be a game-changer for a nonprofit organization. Even relatively smaller planned gifts can be used to sustain designated programs or facilities, add capacity, establish endowments, or launch major new initiatives.

So, if you haven’t launched planned giving, now is the time to start!

I hope this helps. I’d love to hear from you on your questions about planned giving. Sharing is Caring.

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