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5 tips to pass on your charitable values

November 24, 2009

We love the fact that Birmingham ranks so high in generosity on a variety of different surveys. The next generation is doing a great job of demonstrating their own support for our community, but we can do more to encourage those efforts.

This holiday season, try at least one of these five tips and let us know what happens:

Bring up the subject of giving. The Ask your children, your siblings, your parents to share stories of what they care about and what would happen if these special charities were not providing these services and benefits.

Make a will – and involve your family in the discussion. No matter how much or how little you have to give, the decisions you make in your estate plan are vital, especially when you take time to tell those you love about your wishes, hopes and dreams.

Volunteer. Your time can make a difference and what you experience as you help out will tell you a lot about the organizations you support. For younger people, volunteering provides great training and potential job experience.

Make giving decisions as a family. It’s a great idea to use a Family Advised Fund at the Community Foundation to engage the next generation in choosing which nonprofit organizations to benefit. Or you can try the do-it-yourself version as you set your own charitable budget, making sure that philanthropy is a priority.

Practice creative gift giving, especially for the loved one who seems to “have it all.” A gift to charity in honor of someone will last long after the last tie has been unwrapped. Involve your children in deciding what charity would be the perfect fit, and in addressing the acknowledgment card that you include with your holiday greeting.

Read the full story, along with all our other “50 Ways” features. And enjoy your time together and maybe you will have some additional ideas to share after the weekend. We are listening!

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