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Giving together: Factors to consider when representing couples

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Akron Community Foundation can help as you work with a couple to design a charitable giving plan that will create rewarding philanthropic experiences for both partners. Indeed, in Giving as a Couple, Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors reinforces the tenets we maintain as a team at the community foundation when we are working with a couple to develop and activate a charitable giving strategy that matches the couple's goals and values.

For example:

  • Our team strives to understand why your clients want to give together as a couple, rather than "dividing and conquering" as individuals.  
  • Our team seeks to deeply understand your clients' perspectives on roles and control so that we can help structure a process that will allow both partners to be active decision-makers.
  • Our team helps couples decide on financial levels of current and legacy giving that will achieve the couple's philanthropic goals in harmony with their goals for children and grandchildren's personal inheritances and involvement in the family's legacy philanthropy. 

Especially if you are representing couples that include women, it's worth checking out Women Give 2021: How Households Make Giving Decisions, a study released last month by Women's Philanthropy Institute at the Indiana University Lilly Family School of Philanthropy. The authors of the study observed notable trends in how partners – not just women – approach giving. For example, according to the report:

  • More than 61% of couples make charitable giving decisions jointly.
  • When decisions are made by one member of a couple, and that couple includes one woman, the woman is more likely to be that decision maker.
  • Couples tend to agree on the amount and recipients of their philanthropic investments.

As always, the team at the community foundation looks forward to supporting you as you help your clients achieve their family philanthropy goals. To learn more, contact Laura Lederer at 330-436-5611 or We're always available to answer your questions about philanthropy or to schedule a personal consultation with you and your clients – all at no cost.

Additional Resources

This content is provided for informational purposes only. It is not intended as legal, accounting, or financial planning advice.  

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