Donor Advised Funds: Giving back now and in the future

There are many ways to support the Pacific Salmon Foundation now and into the future. As donors start to examine how to most effectively manage their annual donations, some are turning to their local community foundation or investment management company and establishing a Donor Advised Fund (DAF).

A Donor Advised Fund provides the donor with flexible, personal involvement in their philanthropy and social investment in the community. The donor’s gift is invested in permanence by the creation of a fund and a portion of the annual income is granted out to charities the donor wants to support. There are many reasons why donors are establishing these types of funds; one being that it provides the donor the freedom to support the causes that are closest to them now and adjust for those they may support over time. This type of fund also creates a lasting legacy of giving in the donor’s name or that of the family and can involve the next generation in philanthropy.

“From an estate planning perspective, a donor can add to the fund at death through a charitable gift such as a gift in a will, a gift of life insurance, and direct designations of RRSP or RRIF plans or tax-free savings accounts,” says Sara Neely, director of Philanthropic Services at the Victoria Foundation. “The fund would continue to provide annual grants to benefit specifically named charities or caused-based areas, such as the environment, that the donor wishes to support long into the future.”

If the will or other estate gift provides for a charitable gift to add to the donor advised fund, the donor has the flexibility of changing the grant recipients during their lifetime, rather than going to the trouble of changing the terms of the will or other estate documents.

The Pacific Salmon Foundation is very grateful to families who have stepped forward and now support PSF through these funds. There are close to 50 community foundations in B.C. alone, and many of them offer investment services including the management of DAF’s.

For more information on DAF’s and how to leave a lasting legacy to PSF, please contact Margaret Buttner, manager, development at 604-664-7664 or