USM Foundation

Fundraising Talks – May 2022

on May 11, 2022 by Micaela Cameron
Reflecting pool on campus

News and updates from the USM Office of Advancement Research

Letter from the Director

In May, we begin to see beautiful spring flowers and enjoy a little more sunshine. Many higher education institutions are holding in-person commencements like in pre-pandemic days, where graduates can attend ceremonies with their families and friends. While students embark on the next chapter in their lives, fundraising professionals can create opportunities for them to stay connected and cultivate them for future engagement. According to a report on multigenerational philanthropy, it’s estimated that Baby Boomers will pass along nearly $48 trillion in assets to their successors and charities over the next 25 years. This “great wealth transfer” will directly impact new graduates and will affect all types of giving programs at nonprofit organizations.

BNY Mellon’s report Shifting Horizons: Insights Into How Family Offices Are Responding to Rapid Economic & Social Change, shares how family offices responded to various socio-economic crises over the past few years. The report focuses on family office philanthropy, succession planning, cryptocurrencies, private banking, and taxation and regulation. Family offices are private organizations established to manage the financial and personal affairs of wealthy individuals and families, and it’s important for us to learn about their charitable giving behavior. Here are some key takeaways that might be helpful for us to understand family offices:

  • Nearly three-quarters (73 percent) of family offices are involved to some degree in philanthropy, with 30 percent having a documented strategy. Among offices involved in philanthropy, one in five oversee charitable grants of at least $25M. Family offices engage in a variety of philanthropic activities including direct donation to charities, setting up private foundations, investing in charitable trusts and donor-advised funds, and volunteering and advocacy.
  • 49 percent of family offices mention a sense of responsibility to advance social change as a top motivator for their involvement in philanthropy, while 69 percent mention “a desire to give back” as the top motivator.
  • A top priority for family offices is the ability to measure the impact of their philanthropic efforts.
  • Cryptocurrencies are considered important in overall investment strategies in family offices. 77 percent of family offices have some interest or involvement in cryptocurrencies.

Family offices need to overcome certain barriers to continue their involvement in philanthropy. A lack of shared values and interests among family members may become a barrier in their efforts to execute effective giving strategies. The biggest issue for family offices seems to be difficulty in integrating philanthropy into wealth strategy. As you can tell from this new research, the future of philanthropy will be influenced by the transfer of wealth to future generations, as well as family values and unique approaches to giving by each generation.

We wish you a wonderful start to your summer fundraising activities. As always, please feel free to reach out to us with questions, comments or any assistance with fundraising research!

Best Regards,
Sapna and USM Advancement Research Team

Read more in this issue of Fundraising Talks>>

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