Connecting Generations Through Philanthropy

Most wealth holders agree that passing on their values is at least as important as passing on their valuables. In one study, members of the greatest generation and boomer generation were asked to rank the following sources of family wealth in order of importance:

  1. Family history, traditions, life stories, shared values
  2. Instructions and wishes to be fulfilled
  3. Personal possessions of emotional value
  4. Financial assets

Both generations overwhelmingly agreed that financial assets were the least important

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New course teaches students about charitable giving

Palm Beach Daily News – February 24, 2014
Reading, writing and ’rithmetic are so old school.

Today’s schools are focusing on STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) programs and other high-tech fields.

Tomorrow’s educational domain might even include philanthropy education. Already, two private schools in Palm Beach County — Oxford Academy of the Palm Beaches and The Benjamin School — are incorporating philanthropy into their curricula.

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Students take ‘GIVING BACK’ journey

From the Jupiter Courier – May 8, 2014

The concept of charity beginning at home has come much closer to reality for a number of Jupiter area eleventh-graders.

It’s all part of what’s called the Main Street Philanthropy program, a pilot course headed up by local professionals devoting their off duty time and encouraging young people to learn more about charitable giving with a hands-on approach.

Editorial: The value of ‘giving back’

The May 8 edition of the Jupiter Courier featured an editorial on the concept of charity beginning at home.

It was encouraging to see on two fronts — charitable giving and fundraising — that the art of giving back is in itself a great enabler.

Students saw that raising awareness and involvement benefited the less fortunate, while adult fundraisers saw the same for medical research.

Both were transformational.

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Philanthropy: The Tie that Binds

What’s keeping you up at night? This question (or some variation of it) is a common way for an estate planning professional to break the ice with a new client. The answers reveal an overlapping and perhaps surprising pattern. No, the typical worry is not a vendor relationship for the client’s business, an estate planning technique, high taxes or rising interest rates. Rather, the most frequent answer is that clients are worried about their most precious asset – their kids.

This concern transcends all wealth levels. Parents worry about whom their kids’ friends are, or a child struggling at school or possibly even battling substance abuse. Parents worry about not being able to pass on the unique values and stories of their family. Parents worry about connecting with their kids and grandkids in a world where many of us now connect using 140 characters or less.

Of course, these are all complex issues, and surely, estate planners cannot solve these problems through a well-drafted document. However, thoughtful planners can help the family engage in a process that can ignite their collective passion and can help build bridges among generations. The vehicle for this process is philanthropy.

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