Guest author Joy Selak writes on trends in charitable giving

Hello Megan,

We are happy to introduce you to the author of this month’s newsletter, our friend Joy H. Selak, PhD. Joy worked as a financial advisor for 14 years and currently helps individuals and non-profits as a Chartered Advisor in Philanthropy. In addition, she is the author of CeeGee’s Gift which won a Pencraft Award for Young Adult Fiction


Three trends in charitable giving The COVID pandemic, economic instability, and accelerating change has affected all aspects of American life, including philanthropy. But this is not necessarily bad news. The philanthropic sector was due for modernization, and to their credit, the wealthiest Americans are proving to be the most willing to look at charitable needs through an updated lens. Here are some of the changes and how they are shaping the sector.


¨     More Virtual, Less in Person – The model of the annual fundraising event was wiped out by COVID, but digital fundraising has increased. Donors give online more, and younger, tech savvy staff is modernizing systems. The result is reduced costs, more revenue going to mission and the generation soon to inherit family wealth is more engaged, with a focus on social impact and measurable returns.


¨     A Broader Reach, Less Control – Donors are now willing to take a longer view at a broader landscape by awarding more multi-year grants with fewer restrictions and giving beyond their own communities. Younger donors are doing more rigorous research and serving on boards and staff positions and moving away from traditional family foundations to form their own, often through giving collaboratives.


¨     Simpler Charitable Giving Instruments, Less Regulation – The Donor Advised Fund is now available through most financial firms and community foundations. Using a DAF, donors can contribute to their fund and receive the full tax deduction, then later select nonprofits to receive donations. So, while an estimated $45 billion was awarded to charities from DAFs in 2021, a staggering $234 billion remained in the funds. A possible solution is to require DAFs to award 5% annually, the same as private foundations.


Would a Donor Advised Fund make sense for your family? We can help you decide and set one up for you. click here for more information: 

Click Here for Donor Advised Fund Info. 



Megan, Bleckley and Cass

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