July 3, 2024

DAF 101: The Mid-Year Philanthropic Check-In

Author John Canady, Chief Executive Officer

As we reach the midpoint of the year, it is an opportune time for advisors to ensure their clients’ charitable endeavours are on track. A mid-year check-in is a good moment to assess progress, realign goals, and make adjustments if necessary.

Here are a few topics of discussion that will help you have a productive conversation about giving with your clients.


Reviewing philanthropic goals and mission

Ensure your client’s philanthropic ambition still aligns with the goals they set at the start of the year. Does their giving strategy still match their values and long-term objectives? Circumstances and priorities can change, and it is important that their philanthropic mission remains relevant and inspiring. At the same time, you can also evaluate the progress towards the set goals. Are the projects and initiatives on track, or do you need to identify any challenges and help your client overcome them?


Financial Review

It is a good time to review charitable expenditure against the planned budget and ensure that funds are being used efficiently. If there have been any changes in your client’s financial situation, you could discuss how these might affect their philanthropic budget. Are reallocations or additional funding required?


Impact evaluation

Discuss the impact achieved so far. Are the funded programs delivering the desired outcomes? Based on the impact assessment, consider whether to continue, scale up, or wind down certain initiatives. Discuss new opportunities or emerging needs that might require attention.


Giving structures

With a range of charitable giving vehicles available, from private trusts and foundations to donor-advised funds, are the vehicles your client is using still the most appropriate to meet their needs? Are they interested in impact investing with the aim of generating positive social and/or environmental impact in addition to financial return?

Remember that grantmaking is just one way your client can achieve their philanthropic goals. Have they considered using their time, connections, and resources as well as financial contributions? This could look like participating in campaigns and encouraging others in their network to support causes important to them.


Legacy planning

Are there family members who would like to take on more of a prominent role in future giving decisions? Will future generations continue with the same mission or pursue other causes? Knowing the answers to these questions should make it easier for your clients to learn what matters most to their family, whether it be short-term change or long-term legacy.


A mid-year check-in is more than just a review; it is a strategic conversation that ensures philanthropic efforts are meaningful, effective, and aligned with your client’s evolving goals. Having a regular and open dialogue with your client will also help you build a stronger connection for the rest of the year.

For more information on how NPT UK can support your clients’ philanthropic journey please contact us.


About the Author

John Canady, CEO of National Philanthropic Trust UK, has 25 years of experience working across the business, nonprofit and government sectors. He specializes in creating and managing philanthropic funds for donors and family offices around the world who wish to base their philanthropy from the UK.