Keeping Donor Intent by Knowing Your Mission

What is the best way to ensure your donor intent is honored?

A new video from the Philanthropy Roundtable suggests that the critical first step is to craft a mission statement for your philanthropy. If you haven’t clearly defined the focus of your giving, how can you expect others to follow through?

The Case for Crafting a Mission

To avoid the problem of unclear philanthropic missions, the video further identifies key questions that you should ask yourself as you define your goals. These questions get at personal side of giving, such as:

  • How will a real person benefit from your help?
  • How are you different as a funder?
  • What is the change you want to see in society?

These questions largely echo the advice we offered in our recent post on where to begin with charitable giving. The idea of writing down a clear statement of the change(s) you wish to see in society leads our own list of 8 Steps to Securing Your Donor Intent, which you can access here.

Take a look at the video. Ask yourself these questions. At DonorsTrust, we believe a well-defined mission is indeed critical to preserving and protecting a donor’s charitable intent.

As the video notes, defining your intent does simply help you. It benefits everyone around you who may be involved in assisting with your philanthropy.



Additional Resources

If you would like to learn more about donor intent and how you can better protect your charitable legacy, Philanthropy Roundtable has some great resources such as books, seminars, and other articles to guide you. You can browse those here.

We also strive to be a resource to philanthropists who are concerned about their donor intent and wish to secure their charitable legacy for the future. Please take a look at our newest piece, Investing in Liberty, which lays out 9 key considerations for those who wish to invest their charitable dollars to advance the principles of liberty.

The second piece is our 8 Steps to Securing Your Donor Intent. In it, you can find helpful tips on how to protect your giving and stay true to your charitable mission.

Investing in Liberty

8 Steps


  • Peter Lipsett

    Peter Lipsett is vice president at DonorsTrust. He also leads DonorsTrust’s Novus Society, a network of donors under 40 committed to growing their philanthropic know-how. He has a dual degree in political science and theater from Davidson College and finally got a practical credential with an MBA from George Mason University.

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