Family Philanthropy: Creating a Lasting Giving Tradition

Family philanthropy offers a powerful way to have an impact on the causes that matter most to you. It also can bring families closer throughout the year; by creating a forum for shared experiences and values, you may get to know one another on a deeper level and strengthen your bonds.

Of course, family philanthropy is not always simple. Generations may not share the same interests or motivations for giving. They may approach giving in different ways—some may be focused on traditional grantmaking, while others want to invest for impact or experiment with new approaches. Family philanthropy allows you to learn more about what matters to each individual. It also allows you to talk about your values and engage the next generation to create a lasting giving legacy while bonding and bringing the family together.


What Is Family Philanthropy?

Family philanthropy is simply giving as a family. It is a concept that utilises the power of shared values to increase philanthropy’s impact, both on the impacted causes and the participating family members.

There are many tools families can use to practice family philanthropy, whether it is through a family foundation or a  (DAF). Donor-advised funds offer numerous advantages  to a charitable trust or foundation. With a DAF at NPT UK, you can grant and create a lasting, permanent giving legacy as a family. We will help you spend less time dealing with the complicated, administrative side of giving and more time focusing on what you want to achieve.

Creating a Family Giving Plan

The first step of family philanthropy is creating a family giving strategy. When crafting your family philanthropy plan, you can use these steps:

Planning Your Strategy
Planning Your Strategy
Starting a Dialogue
Starting a Dialogue
Tips for Better Family Giving
Tips for Better Family Giving
  1. Align on your goals.
  2. Develop your family giving strategy.
  3. Decide on your giving vehicle.
  4. Determine your decision-making structure and how you will manage your budget.
  5. Have a succession plan.
  6. Learn more about how to establish a giving tradition.

Family philanthropy is not always easy. Here are some tips to help start the dialogue:

  1. Have an honest conversation to express thoughts and opinions openly.
  2. Discuss everything as a family, or call in a professional if needed.
  3. Listen.
  4. Go beyond the first pass of noticing that everyone has different priorities.
  5. Find similarities within those differences and find a common motivation. For example, do all of the causes have geography in common?
  6. Agree to disagree.

Donor Story: Using a DAF for Next Generation Giving

Katia and Kai have three children between the ages of 18 and 35. They have a large DAF and their giving is focused on early childhood education in their local community. While education is an important theme for the entire family, the children would ultimately want to be involved in philanthropy in their own ways. 



After a family meeting with their philanthropy advisor, Katia and Kim decided to update their DAF Succession Plan, recommending that upon their death, the DAF assets in their existing DAF be allocated to three new DAFs, one for each of their children. 

The simple update meant that each child would have their own philanthropic fund in the future, without the need to jointly agree on which causes to support.

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A DAF allows donors to donate, receive immediate tax relief, and recommend grants over time.
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