All of us eventually face an important question: How can we keep alive memories of those we love after they are gone? How might we, ourselves, want to be remembered in our community? The specific answers will vary, but we suggest one common solution can be of help to many: establishing a memorial fund through the Yellow Springs Community Foundation as a tribute to relatives or friends.
Memorial funds have been used to create endowments providing scholarships and awards for high school students. Endowments have also been created to benefit Glen Helen, the Outdoor Education Center, Community Service, Inc., the Children’s Center, and the elderly.
Memorial gifts have also been used for specific projects such as purchasing musical instruments for school children, buying furniture for the Senior Citizens Center, contributing to the Library Association sculpture project, underwriting a village mediation program in the local schools, and planting trees in the village.
Memorial funds can also be directed to another organization that had special meaning for the honoree. Organizations receiving gifts in this way have included the Antioch Writers Workshop, the Friends Care Center, and the Tecumseh Land Trust.
The purposes of memorial funds are limited only by the donors’ imaginations.
Establishing a Memorial Fund
Contributions to a memorial fund can be made at any time. The use of the funds – whether to create an endowment, to spend on a specific project, or to forward to another nonprofit organization – can be determined at the outset. But sometimes, perhaps because a death was sudden and no plans had yet been made, the obituary notice suggests donations to the foundation, and their purpose is defined later.
Whether an endowment is set up as part of your estate planning or is initiated by family or friends to honor an individual who has passed away, designating the Yellow Springs Community Foundation as a repository for memorial funds has many advantages. Gifts to the foundation are tax-deductible. You can direct the funds to aid causes important to you and your family. You can provide a way for others to remember someone they loved or admired.
- Make a gift to the Community Foundation establishing a memorial fund. The purpose of the fund can be determined initially or at a later time.
- Ask friends and relatives to contribute to a memorial fund established at the Yellow Springs Foundation.
The family will be notified of all donations to the memorial fund and consulted about the fund’s use. Frequently family members match or add to a memorial fund created to honor the memory of a relative.
“Memories fade. One way I’m able to keep the memory of my wife, Corky, alive is through a memorial fund I established in her name at the Yellow Springs Community Foundation for the benefit of the Children’s Center. She and I were early supporters of that very worthwhile service to the community. I’m reminded of her when I pass the Center and especially when I receive a note of thanks from the Center for the monies the YSCF sends every year from the earnings of her fund.”– Ray Schiff