Reach Out Now to Secure Donors for the Future
When it comes to fundraising, it’s important to strike a balance between the younger and older generations, says Jeffrey Solomon, president of the New York-based Andrea and Charles Bronfman Philanthropies, a family of charitable foundations that operate in the United States, Canada and Israel and aims to encourage young people to strengthen their knowledge of heritage and support programs in Israel.
“The challenge for an organization is that they see that older people — over age 50 — are the core supporters of most charities,” Solomon says. “[They need to see that] the needs of their children [also] need to be met.”
Solomon manages the Andrea and Charles Bronfman Philanthropies’ global team and oversees annual investments and grants ranging between $15 million and $30 million.
Colleague Sharna Goldseker, vice president at Andrea and Charles Bronfman Philanthropies, focuses specifically on the next generation. She directs 21/64, a division specializing in next-generation and multigenerational strategic philanthropy. The name represents the division’s multigenerational approach: The number 21 symbolizes the time when young people come of age, and 64 is the age when people begin to think about their legacies.
Goldseker says the greatest transfer of wealth in the history of America is just around the corner — and organizations must start to think about that. By the year 2052, baby boomers and their parents will have passed on to their heirs approximately $40 trillion.
She says it’s important to understand the differences between the generations and that many in the nonprofit world don’t know much about Generations X and Y, the children and grandchildren of baby boomers.
“Young people are less interested in formal membership,” Goldseker says. “They are not interested in paying annual dues and attending meetings or buying benefit tickets.
“They are into the more informal,” she explains. “Online communications, taking a class, talking informally at dinner parties.”