Philanthropic Letter of Intent - The Community Foundation for

Sample Philanthropic Letter of Intent
I was raised in Fayetteville, Georgia. My father was very hard working, as he grew up in
the Great Depression. My father passed on his work ethic and from the time I was 11
years old I was working summer jobs, etc. I was taught to be conservative and never
flaunt anything. These values have served me well and have shaped the kind of person I
am today.
I believe in hard work, saving, and investing. I was fortunate to get in the position where
I rose to the executive level of BellSouth Corporation. This position and the ownership
position I accumulated in the Company put me in a secure financial position. When it was
clear that the Company would be sold, I decided to establish the Sample Family
Foundation Fund.
My reasons were as follows:
1. I made my wealth by serving Fayette County, so I want a method of supporting
charities there as a way to give back to the community that helped me become
2. A donor-advised fund would provide a training ground for my family and in
particular my daughter. I felt it was a good way to get all involved and educate my
daughter about the responsibility that comes with wealth.
The purpose of this document is to convey wishes for current and future members of the
Sample Family Foundation Fund. It is also to set out my feelings about philanthropy so
that future directors of the Sample Family Foundation Fund have a clear idea of my
priorities and motivations. I hope these will guide the fund advisors and that they
maintain my legacy through their work with the fund.
I hope that one of my legacies will be a passion for philanthropy. When those with
philanthropic dollars are passionate about how they use those dollars, their philanthropy
tends to be more committed, thoughtful and effective.
In general, the gifts that are the most rewarding are the causes in which one takes some
particular interest and some direct involvement. Where we have first-hand knowledge of
the organization and contact with the participants of the organization, then the chances
are that the involvement will produce more satisfaction.
Also, it is generally more rewarding to give to causes that consider your gift “a big deal.”
For this reason, I think those involved with the Sample Family Foundation Fund going
forward will find their passion for philanthropy by focusing on organizations that are,
perhaps, more “grass roots” or “entrepreneurial.” Communities certainly benefit by
having large nonprofit institutions, but new, smaller nonprofits often have a great impact
on people’s lives and seeing their work has been one of the most rewarding experiences
I’ve had.
I also want to pass on the importance of making grants with an impact. The history of the
fund to-date has been to give large amounts ($50,000-$75,000) to a few number of causes
(4-5 each year). There has been no particular pattern and requests for gifts have been
generally based on whoever asked or mailed a request, but at least with larger gifts to
fewer organizations, we’ve had a bigger impact.
While I am fund advisor, we will consider funding to organizations in the following areas
(in order of importance):
1. Scholarship programs
2. Early Childhood Education
3. Job training programs.
This plan does not exclude miscellaneous grants for small one time or annual gifts,
although we wish to keep this giving to a minimum.
These interest areas reflect one my most closely-held values: opportunity. While future
directors should not feel bound to these specific interest areas, the Sample Foundation
Fund should always promote causes that help people help themselves.
Finally, the Sample Foundation Fund is meant to be a mechanism for bringing extended
members of the family together each year. We hope each family member will attend
family meetings in person. We also hope that each meeting will be on a weekend during
which family members will return to Atlanta to spend quality time together.
By Sample