December 2022

Dear Reader,

My husband and I recently took a road trip and listened to the book Four Thousand Weeks by Oliver Burkeman. The book is based on this premise: assuming you live to 80 years old, you have about 4,000 weeks on this earth. When you embrace the limited nature of time, you can tap into your greater purpose and create a meaningful existence. Burkeman advises readers to have a laser focus in narrowing what they want in life. He suggests that closing the door to infinite possibilities allows for a sharper focus on a few possibilities that resonate most with you.

Listening to Burkeman’s words reminded me of the work we do. We help philanthropists get clear on what matters most to them, define and build their legacy and help translate that into their philanthropic goals.

Ask Questions + Dream Big
Asking everyone in a family - young and old - how they see their legacy can be a fantastic catalyst for deeper conversations and storytelling. You may find out things you never knew about a grandparent or a child - this helps weave the family narrative. The holidays are a perfect time to have these conversations around the kitchen or dining room table. NPR’s Story Corp offers an excellent set of questions that helps spark good conversations around purpose, legacy and family stories.

We also recommend utilizing a combination of the Motivational ValuesTM cards and Picture Your Legacy® cards (great stocking stuffers!) designed by 21/64 to get the creative juices flowing. Asking questions about life experiences, people and institutions that shaped who are you are and your motivational values makes for great storytelling. Likewise, shuffling through the legacy cards can lead to profound conversations around the impact you hope to create in your community and ultimately how you want to be remembered. 
Additional questions to explore in building your legacy:
-What issues in our world do you care deeply about and what do you want to do about them? Look beyond yourself, your immediate circle of family, friends and colleagues to define your legacy.
-Ask yourself how you would like your obituary to read. How do you want to be remembered? What elements of your life do you want your great grandchildren to know about you?

Lastly, we recommend that you write it down or better yet, record it. Describe for your great, great grandchildren how you made sense of this world, how you chose to impact your community, and why that was fundamental to who you are as a human. More specifically, as it relates to your philanthropy, tell future generations how you want them to work together to make decisions to realize your intentions behind your giving. How long do you want your giving to carry into the future? Who sits at the table to make decisions? What do you want them to never lose sight of? This is a gift to future generations who have the responsibility of stewarding your philanthropic resources and intent.
Gifts that Inspire Empathy and Thoughtful Philanthropy
In keeping with years past, we are sharing gift ideas for all ages that inspire empathy and generosity. Here are links to December 2020 and December 2021 newsletters with additional gift ideas.
This story told from the perspective of a young girl recounts a family that experiences a house fire. Hard work and a caring community make for a resilient foundation. The young girl works and saves for her mother and grandmother to have a special chair in which to rest after a long day's work.
This graphic novel is written by the same author who wrote Wonder. A grandmother shares with her grandson how she hid in a small French village during World War II. A classmate who she had shunned proved to be her hero and best friend through the turmoil. White Bird offers lessons of kindness, generosity, and courage.
This story is the first in a series where a group of misfit middle school students who don't care much for each other are united by their teacher Mr. Terupt. An unlikely accident involving Mr. Terupt brings them closer and draws out their kindness, compassion and connectedness.
President of the Center for Effective Philanthropy Phil Buchanan shares data driven insights, tools, and frameworks for thoughtful and effective philanthropy. He writes with all donors in mind - from the novice to the most sophisticated. It is an easy and fun read to inspire philanthropy at all levels.
We love this idea of catalyzing generosity! Give a gift certificate directed towards philanthropy through Tis Best (a nonprofit). The giver can purchase cards of any amount; the receiver can choose from a list of curated public charities to direct their gifts. 100% of the gift card goes to the nonprofit. The gift card recipient has the option to notify the giver where and how they gave.
What's Inspiring Us....
We wish you all a happy and healthy holiday with the ones that you love. May it be filled with rich conversations about what matters most to you, your legacy, and your generosity in your communities.

Kaky + The GPA Team
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