- Ways to Support The Breman Through Planned Giving
- Who Gives to What??? What Gives?
- Create a Jewish Legacy
Bequests: Designate The Breman as a beneficiary in your estate.
Life Insurance: Take out a policy for The Breman or donate policies whose protection you no longer need. You receive an immediate tax deduction.
Charitable Residues: Leave the remaining assets in your will to The Breman. This will reduce taxes otherwise payable by your estate.
Annuity Trusts: Pays a fixed amount of income during your lifetime with substantial tax deductions. The Breman is the recipient of the remainder at the end of the trust.
Unitrust: Pays a percentage of the trust each year of your life. The Breman is the recipient of the remainder at the end of the trust.
Charitable Lead Trust: Donate part of your estate to a trust now and the income goes into a fund you set up at the museum. This reduces estate taxes.
Sara Ghitis leading a tour for a group of educators.
How wonderful it is that nobody needs to wait a single moment before
starting to improve the world.—Anne Frank,
Dutch-Jewish Teenager (1929–1945)
Who Gives to What??? What Gives?
by Howard Fagin, Ph.D.
This article first appeared in the Spring 2008 edition of The Breman's newsletter .
As so many of you know, The Breman is near and dear to my heart. As not so many of you may know, organizational fiscal stability is another topic that is near and dear to me. In March, I was fortunate to be selected to attend a special workshop hosted by the Jewish Federation of Greater Atlanta on the topic of Endowments and Creating a Jewish Legacy. That workshop introduced astonishing statistics that prompted me to start this regular column so that together we can explore the many significant ways that we can further the mission of this amazing museum that so ably embodies many essential and universal Jewish values and so greatly enriches our community.
The eye-opening statistics I referred to are related to wills. I learned that many people in the Jewish community do have some type of “estate plan” compared to the general population in the U.S.: 45% of individuals have a will, but 85% of Jewish individuals have a will, and approximately 20% have a remainder trust. The impressive statistic is that 90% of those who promise to leave an organization in their will, do it! The “shocker” is that only 3% of gifts included in these wills and remainder trusts go to Jewish causes!
What was made clear is that Jewish philanthropy is central and critical to the health and sustainability of American Jewish communities, and Jewish organizations and those of us affiliated with Jewish non-profit organizations certainly know this is true.
So, here are my questions for you: Do you have a will or a remainder trust? If not, now is a great time to create
one, either on your own or with the assistance of a professional. If you would like
to distribute your assets without the state’s “assistance,” it is simply a smart thing
Have you included The Breman in your will or estate planning instruments?
This may be in the form of a beneficiary designation in your retirement plan,
life insurance, will or trust. If so, please tell us! My contact information is listed
below, or you can contact Jane Leavey, Executive Director at 404-870-1861
or by e-mail.
We would love to honor your commitment with appropriate recognition of your “giving beyond living.” If not, please consider it! If you have considered it and have questions or concerns, we are happy to talk with you about bequests and planned giving designated for The Breman.
My last questions to you are these: Why give to our community’s Jewish heritage museum? What’s in it for you? These answers will vary with each person who attempts to answer them, but I can tell you personally that I give because I know for a fact that my gifts to The Breman are dollars well-invested in my community. My support makes a tremendous difference to a large number of people who are deeply moved by what The Breman presents to the public.
The individuals who benefit from my support don’t necessarily know me, and that makes me feel that, in terms of my “tzedakah,” or charitable giving, I am really doing the right thing. I feel a great deal of pride when I consider that I am honoring my Jewish heritage, perhaps setting an example for others, and connecting to my community. I am also proud of how The Breman serves as a bridge for multicultural celebrations and explorations. A Jewish heritage museum (with its Heritage, Special Exhibitions and Holocaust Galleries) is a venue which, by its existence, demonstrates dialogue with the broader community and hope for humanity.
Now it’s true that a small- to medium-sized Jewish heritage museum does not require the same funding as a large-scale metropolitan orchestra or art museum, but a Jewish heritage museum is a community treasure that cannot exist without significant membership support, sponsorships and major gifts. The Breman is grateful to its many benefactors who have nurtured the museum since its grand opening in June 1996. Over the years, as The Breman has secured major gifts for designated efforts, it has provided appropriate recognition to its donors. As The Breman enters its “bat mitzvah year,” there are so many more opportunities to give big and do something big in our community. So, call me or email me and let’s talk about what you can do to improve the world by giving to our Jewish heritage museum, which gives us something that we cannot measure precisely in deeds or dollars.
Howard Fagin is a business and financial advisor and head of Fagin Advisory Services, Inc. Howard serves on The Breman Museum’s Board of Directors and has been a Volunteer Museum Educator for more than seven years. Howard is also Chair of the Temple Sinai Endowment Fund Committee and serves on Temple Sinai’s Finance Committee. Howard can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 770-395-9550.
Jenny Moret giving a tour of the Holocaust gallery.
Create a Jewish Legacy with The Breman
Creating your own Jewish legacy ensures that you will be remembered and that your work and your values will continue when you are no longer here. It also serves as an example to your loved ones that you believe it’s important to support the Jewish community. The act of creating a legacy empowers you to complete the work of your heart and to enjoy the peace that it brings. By leaving a legacy, you will ensure that the traditions and institutions that mean so much to you in your lifetime will exist for future generations.