CCCF/AVHS host legacy tea

The legacy tea drew about a dozen attendees, who learned about legacy giving, establishing trusts and strategies for living and testamentary donations.

The Chaffee County Community Foundation and Ark-Valley Humane Society hosted an afternoon Legacy Tea on Wednesday, May 17, to provide information and education on establishing testamentary and lifetime giving opportunities.

“Our goal is to inspire philanthropy and generate support to build a strong resilient community,” said CCCF executive director Betsy Dittenber. “We are glad to raise awareness about how legacy gifts and planned giving can foster significant impact across the community.”

Estate planning attorneys Katy Welter (Weathervane) and Ann Jefferson (JVAM) spoke about different methods for planned giving and explained the pros and cons of giving before and after passing. One strategy is a donor-advised fund.

“The great thing with those donor-advised funds or even a trust, too, is you can put restrictions on your gift,” Jefferson said. “So if you are leaving it to the Community Foundation, you can say ‘for uses in the educational sector’, or whatever your specific intent is for those gifts.”

Welter also emphasized the importance of thinking early about what organizations are important to each donor. She and Jefferson provided a worksheet for attendees to use as they start planning.

“(Identify) organizations, come up with a list of some things that matter to you,” Welter said. “I encourage you to think about what organizations locally or otherwise embody those values, who is already doing the work that you care about so that you can support that work.”

“If there is an intention to give a larger amount and a legacy-type gift, it really opens the opportunity to really think about what impact that gift can have on the capacity building of that organization,” said Amber van Leuken, executive director of Ark-Valley Humane Society. “We’ve seen larger gifts, really change how we do the work that we do.

“We have a surgical suite now that we didn’t use to have, and the ability to perform the spay-neuter surgeries in-house, to be able to do dental procedures and really have what is equivalent to a small veterinary clinic in our facility has increased our quality of care for the animals that we see and the service we can provide for the community.”

The tea welcomed a dozen attendees, who asked the attorneys questions on how they can take the best steps for their individual situations.

“I have spent my life loving the places where I live,” said Wendy Hall, one of CCCF’s founding members and attendee at the tea. “And I’m going to love them through eternity.”

Dittenber said they hope to host more events in the future.

“I was pleased to see the level of interest in learning more about legacy giving,” she said. “I’m always inspired by the generosity in Chaffee County.”

Those interested in learning more can contact CCCF at to be added to their contact list for future events.

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