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  • Writer's pictureKitsap Community Foundation

How planned giving helps you plan for your organization's future


woman reading to children

You and your team are well aware that bequests to your organization can make a huge difference to your bottom line. With the average size of a bequest reported to total more than $78,000, it’s easy to see how the numbers can add up quickly.

Still, focusing on planned giving is hard. You and your team are busy with annual campaigns, fundraising events, and major gifts. Fitting in a conversation about planned gifts sometimes seems impossible!


The key is to break it down and make it easy. Here are three tips to help streamline your planned giving efforts.

  • First, start by taking a look at all of your marketing materials to be sure you have at least mentioned the opportunity for planned giving somewhere on each marketing asset. Make sure your website mentions your endowment fund at the community foundation. The same goes for printed materials and one-pagers. Similarly, every email newsletter to your donor base should include at least a very small section at the bottom to remind donors that they can leave a meaningful legacy to your organization through an endowment gift in their will or trust. Another key marketing piece is the annual appeal letter. Even though you are asking for a current gift, don’t forget to mention that you’re always open to a discussion about endowment gifts through a bequest or charitable remainder trust.

  • Second, talk with your major gift donors about the importance of your endowment operating reserves to the organization’s ability to weather the ups and downs of the market and community needs. Sometimes donors don’t think about the “business” side of nonprofits.

  • Third, share stories with donors about other people (with their permission, of course) who have given endowment gifts and how those gifts have made a significant difference in your organization’s ability to serve its constituents. Keep an eye out for eye-catching mainstream news articles about charitable giving that you can post on your social media channels or mention to donors in a meeting.


We look forward to working with you to help you grow your endowment! The Kitsap Community Foundation is committed to your success and to philanthropy’s ability to improve the quality of life in our region through the outstanding nonprofit organizations delivering services to people who need it most. Thank you for all you do.

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