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Charitable Giving in Retirement

Posted January 2, 2024

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Charitable Giving in Retirement

Retirement often signifies a time of reflection, gratitude, and the desire to leave a lasting impact on the world. One powerful way to achieve this is through charitable giving. Embracing philanthropy in retirement not only benefits the causes you support but also contributes significantly to your own sense of fulfillment and legacy.

Here, we’ll explore the profound benefits of charitable giving in retirement and various ways you can make a meaningful impact.

The Transformative Power of Giving

If you’ve ever given a gift, you’ve personally experienced the truth of it’s better to give than to receive. The same is true when you make charitable giving part of your lifestyle in retirement.

Although there are many benefits to charitable giving, here are three of the personal transformations you’ll experience when you give.

  1. Sense of Purpose and Fulfillment: Engaging in charitable giving can provide you with a renewed sense of purpose— a feeling many retirees desire to expereince. Giving offers a meaningful way to channel time, resources, and expertise toward causes that resonate deeply, whatever that cause may be to you.
  1. Impact and Legacy Building: Charitable giving allows individuals to create a lasting legacy by supporting causes they are passionate about. It’s a way to perpetuate values and make a positive impact beyond one’s lifetime.
  1. Mental and Emotional Well-Being: Research suggests that acts of generosity trigger the brain’s pleasure centers, leading to increased happiness and reduced stress. Engaging in philanthropy can boost overall well-being in your retirement.

Ways to Engage in Charitable Giving in Retirement

If you haven’t participated in charitable giving, but want 2024 to be the year you start, here are a few ways that you can begin to give back.

  1. Direct Donations: Consider making direct monetary donations to nonprofits, churches,  charities, or causes that align with your values. Research organizations and ensure your contributions are used effectively.
  1. Establish a Charitable Fund: Create a donor-advised fund (DAF) or foundation to manage charitable contributions. This allows you to make significant donations and distribute funds to multiple charities over time.
  1. Legacy Planning: Incorporate charitable giving into your estate planning. Designate a portion of your estate, assets, or life insurance policies to charitable causes through wills or trusts.
  1. Volunteering and Skill Sharing: Giving doesn’t always have to be monetary. You can offer your time, skills, and expertise by volunteering with nonprofits or serving on boards. This is your time to share your knowledge to help organizations grow and thrive!
  1. In-Kind Donations: Besides monetary contributions, consider donating goods, property, or appreciated assets to charitable organizations. Maybe you’ve taken up knitting or woodwork as a hobby, perhaps you’re passionate about gardening and can get your hands dirty in the spring, or you may even have have books you’ve collected over the years that are ready for a new home.

There are organizations throughout our community that you can make an impact in by donating these types of in-kind goods.

  1. Create Endowments or Scholarships: Establishing endowments or scholarships in your name or the name of a loved one can support causes like education, healthcare, or community development in perpetuity.
  1. Matching Programs: Want to see your gift go even farther? If available, leverage employer or community-based matching programs to amplify the impact of your donations.

There are a number of ways that you can get involved in giving throughout the year, no matter your finances or physical ability. As your partner in prosperity, we’d love to help you find ways to maximize your charitable donations and ensure they are going to a cause that aligns with your values.

Making a Lasting Impact

Your gifts, no matter how big or small, can leave a lasting impact. If you are ready to engage in charitable giving this year, here are three things to do before you give.

  1. Identify Passionate Causes: Reflect on causes or issues that resonate deeply with you. Whether it’s supporting education, healthcare, environmental conservation, or social justice, choose causes that align with your values.
  1. Research and Due Diligence: Before donating, research charitable organizations to ensure they are reputable, transparent, and effectively utilize funds for their stated missions.
  1. Engage Family and Loved Ones: Involve family members in charitable giving discussions. It can be a way to pass down values, educate younger generations, and collectively make a difference.

Ready to Leave A Lasting Legacy?

Charitable giving in retirement is a profound way to leave a lasting legacy and make a positive impact on the world. Whether through direct donations, establishing funds, volunteering, or legacy planning, the act of giving back not only supports worthy causes but also enriches the retiree’s life by fostering a sense of purpose and fulfillment.


Thayer Financial, L.L.C. (“Thayer Financial”) is a registered investment adviser offering advisory services in the States of North Carolina, Tennessee, Texas and in other jurisdictions where exempted. Registration does not imply a certain level of skill or training. This website’s presence on the Internet shall not be directly or indirectly interpreted as a solicitation of investment advisory services to persons of another jurisdiction unless otherwise permitted by statute. Follow-up or individualized responses to consumers in a particular state by Thayer Financial in the rendering of personalized investment advice for compensation shall not be made without our first complying with jurisdiction requirements or according to an applicable state exemption.

All written content on this site is for information purposes only. Opinions expressed herein are solely those of Thayer Financial, L.L.C., unless otherwise specifically cited. Material presented is believed to be from reliable sources and no representations are made by our firm as to other parties’ informational accuracy or completeness. All information or ideas provided should be discussed in detail with an advisor, accountant or legal counsel prior to implementation.


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