WAUSA, Neb. – Last month, Wausa Community FoundationFund announced that it had approved grants totaling $42,650 to six local initiatives in 2023 and has invested nearly $120,000 back into Wausa since 2019.
Our community will always experience changing needs, and the Wausa Community Foundation Fund (WCFF) hopes to continue to invest in community communication, housing, education, recreation and more to adapt to those changes. WCFF’s vision encourages us to promote a welcoming community that will preserve the integrity of our small-town history and heritage. The Fund is achieving this vision by growing an unrestricted community endowment. This is a crucial tool to keep Wausa growing, thriving and improving for future generations because it creates a steady stream of revenue for community needs today and those that will arise in the years to come. Through local investment from generous donors who care about the future of Wausa, WCFF supports opportunities and amenities that attract people of all means to visit, live and work in our community.
In 2021, Nebraska Community Foundation (NCF) announced the findings of its Nebraska Transfer of Wealth Study, documenting more than $100 billion in Nebraska wealth passing from one generation to the next over the next 10 years. Over 50 years, the figure swells to $950 billion. In Knox County alone,the study estimates the 10-year transfer of wealth to be $747 million. The study findings marked the beginning of NCF’s Five to Thrive campaign, which urges Nebraskans to consider leaving 5% of their estate to their hometown. Giving just 5% to local charitable causes would amount to $37 million going back into Knox County over the next decade.
There is always a transfer from generation to generation, as parents pass away and leave their estates to their children. But if the heirs no longer live in Wausa, those critical resources leave as well. Importantly, many Nebraska counties are approaching or are already amid their peak transfer years. The Transfer of Wealth Study illustrates the real urgency to act now.
In no way are we suggesting parents not leave money to their heirs, however we are firm in the belief that giving back does not need to be a choice between family and charity. When you leave just 5% to a community’s endowment, you can secure your family’s legacy AND help your hometown thrive. There are many options available in charitable estate planning to allow you to benefit your family and your hometown.
The Wausa Community Foundation Fund asks all who care about the future of Wausa to consider contributing to the unrestricted endowment through current giving, planned givingor both. The Fund is equipped to accept all kinds of gifts including cash, gifts of grain, livestock, real estate, life insurance and other assets that have the potential to make high-impact, tax advantageous charitable gifts.
As for ensuring some of the transfer of wealth remains in our community, there are five simple things you can do:
▪ Visit www.fivetothrivene.org and learn more about the transfer of wealth in Knox County.
▪ Explore NCF’s planned giving resources at www.nebcommfound.giftlegacy.com.
▪ Talk to your professional advisor about including your community in your estate plans.
▪ Give to the Wausa Community Foundation Fund by:
o Visiting www.nebcommfound.org/give/wausa-community-foundation-fund
o Sending a donation to Wausa Community Foundation Fund, P.O. Box 43, Wausa, NE 68786
o Contacting one of our fund advisory committee members: Debbie Vanness, Carlie Johnston, Rod Banks, Bob Marks, Brian Eldorado, Carolyn Johnson, Heather Carlson or Darren Vanness
▪ Spread the word! When we all leave five, our hometown thrives!
Remember: once our wealth leaves the community, it is gone forever.Once our wealth is endowed in our community, it is here forever. The time to act is now—the opportunity will never be greater!
About Wausa Community Foundation Fund
A group of thoughtful community leaders launched the Wausa Community Foundation Fund in 2005 as an affiliated fund of Nebraska Community Foundation. Now part of a statewide movement to spearhead community development and create prosperity, the Fund is working to build a robust unrestricted endowment to benefit our community long into the future.Wausa Community Foundation Fund is an affiliated fund of Nebraska Community Foundation.
About Nebraska Community Foundation
Nebraska Community Foundation unleashes abundant local assets, inspires charitable giving and connects ambitious people to build stronger communities and a Greater Nebraska.
Headquartered in Lincoln, the Foundation serves communities, donors and organizations by providing financial management, strategic development, education and training to a statewide network of 1,500 volunteers serving more than 270 communities.
In the last five years, 45,993 contributions have been made to Nebraska Community Foundation and its affiliated funds. Since 1994, Nebraska Community Foundation has reinvested $517 million in Nebraska’s people and places. For information, visit NebraskaHometown.org.