Did you know that August is National Make-a-Will Month?
Even without a lot of assets, having a will can be a benefit to family and take care of the people and causes you love. If there’s a cause you’re passionate about, you can continue to support it beyond your lifetime with a gift in your will or from life insurance or retirement accounts.
Catawba Lands Conservancy has been the beneficiary of several generous estate gifts over the years, including the gifts that established and sustained our revolving funds for land conservation. In 2016, a longtime Conservancy supporter, Jane McNeary, passed. She had a passion for nature and the outdoors, and no children, so she designated a portion of her estate be left to the Conservancy.
We used a portion of her bequest to protect Jane’s Meadow Bog, which we successfully acquired in 2018. This property is directly adjacent to another conserved property which houses a population of endangered bog turtles and its conservation provided those turtles with a buffer of protection from development. The remainder of Ms. McNeary’s gift was placed into a revolving fund, which is used for acquiring other conservation projects, so her legacy lives on through our mission.
Other donors have named the Conservancy in their wills with bequests of financial assets or of real estate, or as beneficiaries of accounts. If a property gifted by will has significant conservation values it may be possible to preserve it, while other properties can be designated for sale in order for the organization to financially support our work.
While making an estate plan can seem overwhelming, there are many resources available to minimize costs and complexity, including online tools and legal service organizations like the Charlotte Center for Legal Advocacy.
For information on planned giving, please reach out to our Development team at 704-342-3330. We would love to work with you, your family, and advisors to make a plan for your conservation legacy.