a close-up of two acorns leaning against each other on the grass

Posted by: Elijah Stewart

  • 03/27/2024

What Will Your Legacy Be?

Perfectly aligned with ACRES’ long-term approach to thinking and planning, planned giving allows you to plant seeds of change that will grow into a lasting benefit for future generations.

Former Board President Steve Hammer and his wife, Lila, lifetime members and Acorn Society members, say, “The long-term effect of planned giving is well-aligned with ACRES’ long-term vision: we expect that the protected land, the important habitats, the clean water, the beauty, will be here long after us.”

What is Planned Giving?

Sometimes called “legacy giving,” planned giving means making plans for a contribution that is arranged in the present and allocated at a future date (either during your lifetime or upon death), through a will or other financial vehicle. The most common and simplest form of planned giving is a bequest or gift of property or cash made through your will. A planned gift can be as simple as leaving a percentage of your life insurance policy to ACRES, or as complex as establishing a charitable lead or remainder trust.

Gifts can include:

  • Bequest by will or living trust
  • Retirement assets such as 401k plans & individual retirement accounts (IRAs)
  • Stocks and securities
  • Real estate
  • Charitable lead trusts
  • Charitable remainder trusts
  • Life insurance

While planned giving takes many forms, all result from careful planning and an intention to make a lasting impact. Much of the land you help protect today came to ACRES through wills. Significant growth in ACRES’ long-term investments is largely thanks to planned gifts.

“The true meaning of life is to plant trees under whose shade you do not expect to sit.”

Nelson Henderson

Benefits of Planned Giving

You can leave a legacy for future generations through planned gifts. Planned giving is an opportunity to turn your values, hopes and dreams for your community’s future into a legacy protecting and caring for natural areas and working lands while providing countless opportunities for research, recreation and conservation.

Depending on the gift’s type and value, there are tax and financial benefits for you and your heirs.

You get to determine today how your gift will be spent, working with ACRES to identify the best use of your support for an organizational need.

Although during your lifetime you may not have the cash to make a substantial gift, through planned giving you can donate assets that equate to what could be the most significant gift you make in support of protecting local land.

Steve Hammer shares that “planned giving offers, even to those of us with modest means, the opportunity to support the important work of our favorite charity in a significant way. It often can do that while also reducing income taxes.”

Acorn Society

Making your plans known to ACRES by completing a Declaration of Intent will include you as a member of the Acorn Society. This special group of legacy donors is planting the seed today, helping ensure that local conservation continues well into the future.

For more information about including ACRES in your long-term plans, and/or to complete a Declaration of Intent, please contact Heather Barth, Advancement Director, at [email protected] or 260-637-2273, extension 105.

Save The Date
Acorn Society Brunch, Saturday, April 27
Invitations will be sent to Acorn Society Members in late March with more information!