November 15th National Philanthropy Day
Local Advisors “Ask the Giving Question”
Guelph Guelph and Wellington County has one of the highest volunteer rates in Canada, earning it the title of ‘Most caring community’ but do residents put their money where their mouth is? The answer appears to be a resounding Yes!
According to the Guelph Community Foundation’s VitalSigns® released in October, almost 1 in 3 residents of Guelph and of Wellington County reported making charitable donations on their tax return in 2007, above the 1 in 4 provincial average. With a median amount of total giving pegged at $320 ($290 for Guelph tax filers) we’re not talking a $20 donation here and there. In fact, the median donation has gone up 3.2% in Guelph and in Wellington County (+3.6% in Guelph) since 2006.
“Time and time again, I am gratified to see the extent to which we live in a very generous community,” says Andrea Olson, Executive Director of the Guelph Community Foundation. “People from all walks of life and every social strata dig deep to help one another.”
While many support friends for a run or event or make memorial donation on an ad hoc basis, others seek the advice of their accountant, lawyer, investment advisor or insurance agent to make their money work not only for them, but for their community.
“It’s not just for the rich and famous,” laughs Bob Berry, a local Guelph lawyer and member of the Guelph Community Foundation’s professional advisors committee. “A professional advisor can provide a number of short or long term giving strategies that benefit not only the donor, but the donor’s family and the community, including strategies which allow the family continued involvement in the selection of the charitable organizations to which the donor’s money is being given.”
Still, professional advisors may hesitate to “ask the giving question”. That’s why the Guelph Community Foundation has just re-released its professional advisors’ tool kit. The Professional Advisors eResource, available at www.guelphcf.ca, offers advisors a wide range of basic and more technical information about charitable giving including:
* Adding giving to your practice
* Talking about charitable giving
* Detailed information on six common gift options
* Handouts that advisors can personalize and share with clients
* Donor stories that illustrate how giving can be used to help clients meet their financial and personal goals
“The Community Foundation’s core philosophy is that anyone can build a legacy” adds Olson. “To this end we provide tools like the Professional Advisors eResource to spur conversations and strategies and Vital Signs to provide a snapshot of our community and highlight where need is the greatest.”