How Long Should Your Foundation or Giving Program Last?

Many donors consider the time horizon of their philanthropy only after they have been giving for some years. Perhaps they created a private foundation thinking that endowing in perpetuity was not only the norm, but the only way to set things up. Perhaps their lawyer prepared the papers and they signed them without even being aware they had a choice. Perhaps they are reconsidering their positions after learning about respected philanthropists, like Bill and Melinda Gates, who plan to spend all their resources within a limited time. Perhaps they are simply undecided.

Part of the Philanthropy Roadmap series, this guide discusses some of the main ways to evaluate and set a time horizon for giving.

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Strategic Lifespan and Limited Life Foundations

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.

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