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Alida Struze smilingAt age 94, Cleveland native Alida Struze knows that times have certainly changed. She worries, however, that when it comes to wild places, things have not changed for the better. And she feels children are the ones losing out.

"When I was little, we didn't have any money to travel to our country's grand wild places," Alida said. "But we had fields of Queen Anne's lace and daisies and buttercups. And there was a small pond across from our house where my brother and I could see tadpoles and frogs."

Alida also fondly recalls trips to visit family in rural Ohio. "The first thing I wanted to do when we got there was go into the woods," she said. "We had to cross a rickety swinging bridge to get there. I loved all the tall trees, and I can still smell the ferns and the loam.

"I feel so bad for the kids growing up today because we are ruining our environment with fracking and uncontrolled growth," Alida continued. "If we do not do something to help, what will our children have in the future?"
For many years Alida has been committed to doing her part to preserve wildlands for the next generation to enjoy. "I'm not rich, but I give what I can to several environmental groups, including The Wilderness Society," she noted. "I also contact my representatives about environmental legislation I feel strongly about, and I encourage others to do the same."

In addition to her decades of current support, Alida has made a generous commitment to the future of wild places by including a gift to The Wilderness Society In her will. "I spent 42 years as a social worker, so I have always tried to help people," she explained. "My bequest to The Wilderness Society is my way of continuing—after I'm gone—to help a group that has meant so much to me for many years. It's a simple way that I can continue to protect the environment.

"I hope others will consider making a gift in this way," she continued, "if for no other reason than to preserve wild places for our children."

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A charitable bequest is one or two sentences in your will or living trust that leave to The Wilderness Society a specific item, an amount of money, a gift contingent upon certain events or a percentage of your estate.

an individual or organization designated to receive benefits or funds under a will or other contract, such as an insurance policy, trust or retirement plan

"I give to The Wilderness Society, a nonprofit corporation currently located at 1615 M Street, NW, Washington, DC 20036, or its successor thereto, ______________ [written amount or percentage of the estate or description of property] for its unrestricted use and purpose."

able to be changed or cancelled

A revocable living trust is set up during your lifetime and can be revoked at any time before death. They allow assets held in the trust to pass directly to beneficiaries without probate court proceedings and can also reduce federal estate taxes.

cannot be changed or cancelled

tax on gifts generally paid by the person making the gift rather than the recipient

the original value of an asset, such as stock, before its appreciation or depreciation

the growth in value of an asset like stock or real estate since the original purchase

the price a willing buyer and willing seller can agree on

The person receiving the gift annuity payments.

the part of an estate left after debts, taxes and specific bequests have been paid

a written and properly witnessed legal change to a will

the person named in a will to manage the estate, collect the property, pay any debt, and distribute property according to the will

A donor advised fund is an account that you set up but which is managed by a nonprofit organization. You contribute to the account, which grows tax-free. You can recommend how much (and how often) you want to distribute money from that fund to The Wilderness Society or other charities. You cannot direct the gifts.

An endowed gift can create a new endowment or add to an existing endowment. The principal of the endowment is invested and a portion of the principal’s earnings are used each year to support our mission.

Tax on the growth in value of an asset—such as real estate or stock—since its original purchase.

Securities, real estate or any other property having a fair market value greater than its original purchase price.

Real estate can be a personal residence, vacation home, farm, commercial property or undeveloped land.

A charitable remainder trust provides you or other named individuals income each year for life or a period not exceeding 20 years from assets you give to the trust you create.

You give assets to a trust that pays our organization set payments for a number of years, which you choose. The longer the length of time, the better the potential tax savings to you. When the term is up, the remaining trust assets go to you, your family or other beneficiaries you select. This is an excellent way to transfer property to family members at a minimal cost.

You fund this type of trust with cash or appreciated assets—and may qualify for a federal income tax charitable deduction when you itemize. You can also make additional gifts; each one also qualifies for a tax deduction. The trust pays you, each year, a variable amount based on a fixed percentage of the fair market value of the trust assets. When the trust terminates, the remaining principal goes to The Wilderness Society as a lump sum.

You fund this trust with cash or appreciated assets—and may qualify for a federal income tax charitable deduction when you itemize. Each year the trust pays you or another named individual the same dollar amount you choose at the start. When the trust terminates, the remaining principal goes to The Wilderness Society as a lump sum.

A beneficiary designation clearly identifies how specific assets will be distributed after your death.

A charitable gift annuity involves a simple contract between you and The Wilderness Society where you agree to make a gift to The Wilderness Society and we, in return, agree to pay you (and someone else, if you choose) a fixed amount each year for the rest of your life.