March 1, 2018
The Philanthropic Trends Digest
A Publication of Lawson Associates, Inc.
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Douglas M. Lawson, Ph.D.
Dallas, TX

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Pam Carpenter

Pam Carpenter

Chief Operating Officer

Dallas, TX 




Senior Associates: 

Ben Casey

J. Ben Casey 

Dallas, TX

  Edward M. Ridout
Roanoke, VA and
Washington, DC  540.797.9966

Featured Associates:

Rod Brown 2
 Rod Brown

Dallas, TX  



  Dr. Raymond A. Craig
Lake Wylie, SC 

  Steve Duffy
Lincoln, NM 

 Jane Jordan

Jacksonville, FL 
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Dear Friend:

How does an "Attitude of Gratitude" fit into and help make philanthropy a part of young people's lives today?

Jennifer Breheny Wallace answers this in the Wall Street Journal by stating that we must teach gratitude to young people by expressing it more often yourself.

There are many benefits of counting your blessings regularly.  An expanding body of research points to the many benefits of counting your blessings.  At the same time, however, as shown in a 2017 poll of 2,000 adults by the John Templeton Foundation fewer people, expecially those between 18 and 24, have an attitude of gratitude.  One of the biggest benefits of being grateful is better health, especially mental.  This is also one of the greatest benefits of giving.  I wrote about this in my book, Give To Live.

Gratitude is also a spiritual emotion.  Almost every world religion includes gratitude as a part of its value system.  As a former pastor myself, I have always stressed that the best prayer is one of thanksgiving.

As a back up to her article Wallace sites a 2014 article in School Psychological Review.  She also notes how the Welch family of Texas taught their children how to be generous by first including them in family volunteering opportunities in poverty-stricken communities at home as well as overseas.  By learning through volunteering what poverty was all about they not only taught gratitude but also the joy of giving.

Let's share these same kind of opportunities and instill both gratitude and giving in the young people in our lives.


Douglas M. Lawson, Ph.D.

Jennifer Breheny Wallace, "An Attitude of Giving", The Wall Street Journal, February 24, 2018, p. C1.
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"Success is not a finite resource; share it, wish it on others, and celebrate others." - - Savania China
DISNEY TO DONATE $1 MILLION OF 'BLACK PANTHER' PROCEEDS TO YOUTH STEM PROGRAMS - - Disney has announced it will donate $1 million of the proceeds from "Black Panther" to STEM programs at the Boys & Girls Clubs of America, in support of one of the movie's key themes: how technology can empower young people from marginalized communities. The film is set in Wakanda, a country whose surplus of the fictional metal vibranium has enriched it tremendously. Many of the technologies in the film are invented or controlled by Shuri, the sister of T'Challa, the Black Panther and Wakanda's king. In a statement, the chief executive of the Walt Disney Company, Robert A. Iger, said it was thrilling to see how much the technology in the film had excited young audiences. "It's fitting that we show our appreciation by helping advance STEM programs for youth, especially in underserved areas of the country, to give them the knowledge and tools to build the future they want," he said. The $1 million pledged by Disney is only a small percentage of the money that the film has brought in. In less than two weeks in theaters, "Black Panther" made more than $700 million worldwide, making it one of the fastest grossing films ever. - - Jonah Engel Bromwich, The New York Times, February 27, 2018.  Read more.
DONOR ADVISED FUND GIVING FAVORS EDUCATION BUT NOT RELIGION - - People who give through the country's largest donor-advised funds donate twice as much of their gifts to education and about one-third as much to religion as donors overall, according to a study, produced by the Giving USA Foundation. Those disparities could widen, and congregations could see donated funds tapering off to other priorities as a result of the recent changes in tax law, suggested Una Osili, associate dean for research at Indiana University's Lilly Family School of Philanthropy. Wealthier donors, who have a greater tax incentive to give under the new law, are more likely to turn to donor-advised funds, which advertise their ability to turn non-liquid assets, such as privately held companies, stock, and property, into charitable dollars. "Grant patterns from donor-advised funds don't align closely with overall giving patterns of everyday Americans, where religion is the single most important destination of those dollars," Osili said. "The donor-advised fund landscape looks similar to high-net-worth giving patterns." Donor-advised funds allow people to create an account for money they intend to donate to charity. When they do so, they can claim an immediate tax deduction. - - Alex Daniels, The Chronicle of Philanthropy, February 28, 2018.  Read more. 
LAURA BUSH SPEAKS AT BAYLOR NURSING'S GOING FOR THE GOLD GALA - - Laura Bush was the headline speaker at Baylor University Louise Herrington School of Nursing's Going for the Gold Gala at the Hyatt Regency Dallas.  She discussed her experiences as first lady and her work at the George W. Bush Institute with Baylor University President, Dr. Linda A. Livingstone.  The former first lady is chair of the Women's Initiative at the George W. Bush Institute, and she is a longtime champion of women's health care and child development.  The gala paid tribute to pediatric nurses, and the proceeds will support construction of a new building for the nursing school. - - Holly Haber, The Dallas Morning News, February 16, 2018.  Read more. 
THE NEW TAX LAW:  DEDUCTIONS FOR CHARITABLE DONATIONS - - The number of tax returns claiming deductions for charitable contributions will drop by more than 50% as a result of the tax overhaul, according to estimates from the Tax Policy Center. The nonprofit group expects 16 million filers to take advantage of the deduction for tax year 2018, down from 36 million for tax year 2017. The standard deduction for 2018 is nearly double the level for 2017, rising from $6,350 to $12,000 for single filers and from $12,700 to $24,000 for couples filing jointly. The standard deduction is the amount filers can subtract from income if they don't list "itemized" write-offs for mortgage interest, charitable donations, state taxes and the like on Schedule A. As a result, a filer's itemized deductions for 2018 will need to be greater than new standard-deduction amounts for the filer to benefit from listing deductions separately. Givers may want to consider donor-advised funds, and donors who are 70½ or older have another good strategy if they have individual retirement accounts. Many can benefit from contributing up to $100,000 of IRA assets directly to one or more charities. - - Laura Saunders, The Wall Street Journal, February 13, 2018.  Read more. 

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