Case Study: Bequests From Women

The Non-Profit Times reported today,

More and more, women are making up the donor pool of estate gifts, leaving large bequests to one or two charities that do not necessarily reflect any prior giving history with the recipient organizations.

According to Russell F. Robinson, chief executive officer of Jewish National Fund in New York City, the organization raises several million dollars each campaign year from bequests. “The demographics are always surprising,” said Robinson. “We have received bequests of more than $1 million from donors who previously only planted $18 trees with us and we have even received $1 million from people who never gave us anything. Individuals may often make their most significant gifts through their estates; especially, those who do not have children or who were never married.”

In the 2007 campaign year, JNF received 10 estate gifts that ranged from $200,000 to $1.3 million. Nine were from women, none of whom had children. Of these 10 donors, four individuals had zero giving history, three were consistent donors of $25 to $100 during a 10 to 15-year period, and three gave gifts that ranged from $3,600 to $87,000 during their lifetimes.

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