When you are planning your estate you may be interested in charitable giving. This can help you to create a lasting legacy as you continue to make a difference even after you are gone in some cases.
And of course, there can be tax advantages that go along with philanthropic acts as well.
There are a few different ways that you can give to charities. Of course you can simply give direct gifts to charities, but this can be rather inefficient. You would be dealing with a number of different entities if you do in fact want to support multiple charities.
Some people utilize donor advised funds as an alternative. You can ask the fund to endow monies that you donate to multiple different charities. In this way you make a single contribution, but you ultimately support a number of different causes that you find to be meaningful.
Starting a private family foundation is another option. Though we are all aware of foundations started by very wealthy families in fact the majority of private foundations are not staffed, and most are funded with less than $1 million.
If you’re serious about doing the most good with your money you should do your research. You can find out information about charities by visiting their websites of course, but they are not going to be purely objective.
One good resource that you may want to tap into is the CharityNavigator.org website. They do a great job putting charitable organizations under the microscope, and you can find out a lot about the accountability and transparency of thousands of charities on their site.