We recently shared some great news about the JCC, and this positive change has made us reflect.

Like many people during major shifts in their lives (marriage, kids, retirement) we’ve been thinking a lot about the future—about legacy.

The JCC, the JCC Ranch Camp, and the Mizel Arts and Culture Center were recently accepted to participate in a ground-breaking legacy giving program, the Live On | Life & Legacy program—a four-year partnership program of the Harold Grinspoon Foundation and Rose Community Foundation.

We asked our Donor Stewardship Coordinator, Pamela Kalinowski, some questions about the program and what this means for the future of the JCC, the JCC Ranch Camp, and the Mizel Arts and Culture Center.

So why is the Live On | Life & Legacy program a big deal?

Pamela Kalinowski: This program has had such an enormous impact on the future of Jewish communities across the country. By training Jewish organizations to secure legacy gifts—which are gifts left in wills, trusts, retirement plans, and similar instruments—the Live On | Life & Legacy program has already helped participating organizations secure over half a billion dollars for Jewish communities. Participating in this program gives us a chance to offer donors the opportunity to change lives forever. I think that’s absolutely incredible. A legacy gift can be one of the most powerful gifts you ever give.

Is it difficult to make a legacy gift?

PK: It doesn’t have to be! It can be as easy as revising beneficiary designations. You can also make a legacy gift through a will or trust. There are many options to choose from. I would advise anyone interested in making a legacy gift to consult with an attorney or financial advisor. These professionals can simplify the process for you, especially if your needs or goals are a little more complex.

How are legacy gifts different from regular donations?

PK: Legacy gifts give you a special chance to reach into the future and shape lives not for dozens, but for hundreds of years. Unlike regular donations, legacy gifts are self-sustaining. These gifts are used to build our endowment funds, from which we receive an annual income. Even modest gifts produce a steady flow of income year after year, for as long as they exist. So, by giving a legacy gift, you will make it possible for the JCC to continue its programs and serve the community for generations to come. And if you commit to a legacy gift to the JCC, Ranch Camp, or the Mizel Arts and Culture Center, you will join our society of Legacy Champions!