One of the Foundation’s goals is to build Shambhala’s financial sustainability by creating endowments, where contributions become a legacy that is protected and invested, and a portion of investment profits are used to make grants.
As of April 2012, the Foundation has received and manages over $270,000 in endowments, and has successfully created all of the legal, accounting and financial management policies necessary to support and build upon this.
By 2020 our goal is to have $20 million of funds under management or pledged to the Foundation’s endowments, fulfilling our vision of having a significant pool of capital dedicated to the support of Shambhala vision for many generations.
What is an Endowment?
An endowment fund is a self-sustaining source of funding where the principal investment remains intact. Endowment assets are invested and a portion of investment income is granted annually to support the fund’s purpose. Any undistributed earnings are reinvested to grow the fund. In this way, an endowment fund can provide support for it’s designated purpose in perpetuity. Endowments are built over the course of generations, and are funded with ongoing gifts and bequests. By establishing an endowment fund, donors can create a permanent legacy.
Endowments establish “baskets” for causes aligned with a donor’s inspiration and the Foundation’s mission, and are poised to receive more “permanent” gifts that will continue to give out to generations to come. Once established, these baskets will be an inspiration for others to make additional gifts in support of the fund’s purpose. In particular, endowment funds provide a way for a person to leave a lasting bequest.
Why Do Institutions Like Shambhala Establish Endowment Funds when They Have Operational and Capital Needs?
With such an expansive vision as Shambhala’s there will always be inspiration to grow beyond our current boundaries. An endowment is a savings vehicle which creates financial stability, allowing less dependency on unpredictable sources of income. Over the long term they reduce the need for operational and capital fundraising. Every dollar raised is a dollar that does not need to be raised again.
Can I Support an Existing Endowment?
A gift of any amount can be given to one of The Sakyong Foundation’s existing endowment funds. Your gift will be added to the principal amount increasing this legacy that will be protected in perpetuity.
How Can I Start an Endowment?
Endowments can be started with gifts of cash, publicly traded securities, real estate, life insurance and other similar assets. Endowments can also be established through bequests by naming The Sakyong Foundation in your will to receive a portion of your estate with the condition that it be used to create an endowment. You may suggest the name of the fund and its intended purpose.
Is There a Minimum Amount Required to Start an Endowment?
A new endowment can be established with $25,000. It is possible, however, to establish an endowment with a lesser amount as long as a minimum of $25,000 has been contributed within five years of the date the agreement was signed. Again, you can name the fund and stipulate its specific purpose aligned with the overall purpose and mission of The Sakyong Foundation.
How Are The Sakyong Foundation’s Endowment Funds Managed?
The Board of Directors and Investment Committee of The Sakyong Foundation oversee all endowment funds to ensure that the fund is stewarded as it was intended. Quarterly updates will be provided.
Butler Financial Services (BFS) currently manages our endowments; the funds have earned approximately 6% per annum.
Can I Specify the Investment Goals for an Endowment?
Over the past two years our endowments have been invested in conservative portfolios with a focus on growth and income. Depending on the particular investment goals for the endowment, BFS will tailor the fund’s asset allocation accordingly.