You may have heard about the tax advantages of a Giving Fund (donor-advised fund) at NCF, but the benefits don’t stop there. A fund makes it easy and fun to share the joy of generosity with your friends, family, and employees. Here are seven creative ways:
1. Circle up with friends – With a Giving Fund, you can join forces with friends near and far in mutual efforts of generosity. Create a Giving Circle among friends and contribute to a single Giving Fund so you can multiply your impact. Whether you focus on one cause or many, giving together will help you bond in ways that few other activities can.
2. Engage employees – You may have spent most of the year only connecting on Zoom, but generosity can create some much-needed meaningful camaraderie with your colleagues. Open pre-loaded Giving Funds to recognize your top performers and let them experience the joy of generosity firsthand.
3. Share it with your spouse – When it comes to actually writing checks to charity, that responsibility usually falls on one spouse or the other, like paying bills. But a Giving Fund makes it easy to go online together to set aside funds for giving, check your balance, review your grant history, research charities, and make granting decisions together, all in a moment’s notice.
4. Make it a family mission – A Giving Fund can make it easier to open up the generosity conversation with your adult children or other family members. Ask everyone to articulate their passions, look for common priorities, and explore differences. Then, use your fund to pool your resources, challenge each other with matching grants, assess impact, and accomplish a shared mission.
5. Set goals and track progress – Giving is often reactionary, especially when the needs all around seem so great. But with a balance set aside in your Giving Fund, you and your family can take time to be more intentional, clarify your causes, and get focused. Your fund makes it simple to set up recurring grants to meet goals and to print reports so you can check your progress.
6. Use your “cents” to teach younger children – The next time you gather with your children or grandchildren, give each child five pennies. Then, ask them to “vote” for the causes or charities they want to support using their pennies. After everyone has discussed and voted, reveal that each penny is worth $100 (or any amount you choose). Then, use your fund to go online together and recommend grants to the charities they chose.
7. Give in memory – Use a Giving Fund as an “In Memoriam” Fund to honor a loved one. Name the fund in their honor to carry on their memory with every grant. Because a Giving Fund can collect donations from multiple givers, an “In Memoriam” Fund could even be the recipient of gifts in lieu of flowers for those who want to honor someone in a more lasting way.
These are just a few of the ways you can use your Giving Fund to spur others to greater giving. We hope these ideas help inspire some more of your own. And if you don’t have a Giving Fund, open one in minutes.