How to Donate - Foundation
How to Donate
An important question for many is how they can participate in the effort to carry out God's will. There are many options depending upon the circumstances of the giver. Over the years, the Westwood Foundation has primarily achieved its growth through traditional memorial gifts, bequests and gifts in honor of persons and special occasions. These have been the bedrock upon which the Foundation has grown, for which we are most thankful. More recently, however, the Foundation has been the recipient of certain special forms of gifts, such as planned gifts and gifts of appreciated assets, which add another dimension and have the potential to bring the Foundation to a new level in its ability to help secure the future of Westwood, which we love so dearly.
Gifts of cash or appreciated assets can be relatively straight forward. Unlike cash, however, appreciated assets, including stocks, bonds, mutual funds, life insurance, and real-estate, offer tax advantages to the donor. For income tax purposes, deductions from income are determined by the current value of the asset rather than the original cost. In addition, the capital gains tax on the appreciation does not have to be included as income on your tax return.
Deferred (or planned) gifts come in many forms; the most common of which may be through wills or estates. Other forms of planned gifts include making the Westwood Foundation the beneficiary of a life insurance policy, a retirement plan, or a charitable annuity contract. Creating a charitable trust, providing the Foundation with a lead gift or remainder after your family needs have been covered, is an attractive option. Many in the Westwood congregation have taken advantage of this special IRS sanctioned option. Are you thinking about your legacy? Give life to your future by considering a charitable unitrust. The charitable unitrust can be a powerful financial and estate planning tool. We call this the win-win planning arrangement. Your family will win because a charitable unitrust: • May increase the family income • Will help you avoid capital gains tax • Will offset taxable income • Will reduce the size of your taxable estate • Will provide for surviving loved ones And most of all, it will give you the enjoyment and satisfaction of providing a meaningful gift to benefit Westwood ministries with your name(s) memorialized for the future. If you wish to learn more about gifting options and what might be best for your needs, please feel free to contact the Foundation President, John Steinke, or the Planned Giving Committee chairperson, Linnea Sodergren. The Foundation has people skilled in these matters and would be happy to discuss options with you.
More Information and Resources
The following links may be helpful as you consider your estate planning:
• Thrivent Choice - www.thrivent.com/thriventchoice/
• ELCA Foundation - www.elca.org/fo
• Westwood Lutheran Memorial Foundation and Annual Report 2011-2012