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Creating a Sunrise at Sunset

By Jackie Jacobs

Every year, we receive news of new “sunrises” created by the thoughtful planning of donors who include charities in their wills.

One such donor was Florlyn Freedman, who made generous arrangements in her will for five local charities upon her death, which occurred two years ago.

Mrs. Freedman was a member of the “Silent Generation” that was comprised of individuals born between the two World Wars, many of whom who were too young to join the service when World War II started.

She was the exception, a child of the Great Depression who proudly served her country during the Second World War and then chose a government career that lasted for forty years.

In 2012, the year of her death, Americans donated an estimated $316 billion to charitable causes, of which 7.4% came from bequests like Florlyn Freedman’s.

Her bequests were all earmarked for local Jewish organizations—three of which were synagogues.

One of those synagogues used the proceeds to for chapel renovations; the JCC used its gift to update the Women’s Health Center lounge, naming it in her memory.

The remaining other recipients created endowment funds with their share of the estate distributions, all which bear Florlyn Freedman’s name.

An endowment fund is a special fund that generate income every year to support the purposes of the endowment—like an artesian well that never runs dry.

The Federation’s endowment is being used to support its Israel Experience programs for teens.

Agudas Achim’s annual payout is for general programming needs at the synagogue.

After using a portion of their gift to acquire 15 Torah scroll covers, the bulk of the Tifereth Israel’s gift has been endowed to provide Sunday and Hebrew School scholarships.

Upon being notified that their organization was going to receive an endowment from the Freedman estate, a grateful member remarked that endowments are like sunlight, providing warm and comfort through financial resources that will be available for generations to come.

Peering into the future, it is a comfort to know that endowment income can always be relied on as a source of financial support.

Would you like to paint a sunrise at the sunset of your life?  It is a simple as including the correct language in your will. For information about endowment funds, including sample bequest language, contact me at the Foundation at 614-338-2365 or jjacobs@tcjf.org.

Jackie Jacobs is the Chief Executive Officer of the Columbus Jewish Foundation, the Central Ohio Jewish community’s planned giving and endowment headquarters.

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