What is the most compelling argument for continuing your family foundation, or donor-advised fund, in perpetuity? What is the most compelling argument for raising annual payouts and setting a closing date? Whether to operate indefinitely or limit the lifespan of a foundation is among the most fundamental questions that foundations can ask—and a conversation every family or board should have. This NCFP Content Collection is aimed at new donors considering what strategic lifespan will best work for their foundation, as well as existing foundations that have already set a closing date, or any family or board contemplating the question. Know of other good resources to include here? Please suggest a resource.
For additional perspectives and case studies on ending long-term partnerships with grantees, see the Content Collection, Ending Well: Exits and Spend Downs.
For additional stories of founders and donor couples who have embraced the “Giving While Living” approach to philanthropy, see the Content Collection, Giving While Living: Profiles of Donors and Families.
Considering the Question of Perpetuity
Foundation Case Studies
The Irwin Sweeney Miller Foundation: A Study in Spend DownPassages Issue Briefs
NCFP Webinars and Teleconferences
Giving While LivingWebinar
Perpetuity is a Long TimeWebinar
Additional Voices and Perspectives
Can Structure Set You Free?Article
Research and Trends
Statements on Sunsetting
A growing number of donors and foundation boards are sharing statements clarifying their reasons and goals for spending down. Here are a few of our favorites: