What is Charleston Life & Legacy?


LIFE & LEGACY represents a shared commitment by local agencies and congregations to work together to secure a more vibrant Jewish future. Each one of us has the power to create a legacy gift that will benefit the organizations that are most important to us. Your gift will benefit the endowment for your organization(s) every year, in perpetuity, long after your lifetime, for generations to come. You can make this commitment through a Letter of Intent (LOI) to remember your Jewish causes in your will, estate plan, or by beneficiary designation.  


To learn more, contact Rebecca Engel at rebeccal@jewishcharleston.org or 843-614-6484.

What is a Legacy Gift?


A legacy gift is an after-lifetime gift, included as part of a will or estate plan, or by beneficiary designation of a retirement plan or life insurance policy. This gift goes into a permanent endowment fund for the benefit of your designated organization(s). 

What is an endowment?

Endowments are Permanently Restricted Funds which are invested in a large diversified pool, held for the benefit of your organization. 

Your legacy gift will be housed at the Jewish Endowment Foundation of South Carolina, a collaboration between the Charleston Jewish Federation and the Coastal Community Foundation. All distributions from your endowment fund are for the benefit of your organization only. Each year, a distribution of 4% is given to your designated organization. 

Endowments are designed for the principal to grow. When the annual interest is more than the annual distribution, the difference is added to the principal, allowing for a larger distribution in subsequent years. 

Therefore, your legacy gift will benefit your designated organization(s) every year in perpetuity. 


What about my children and grandchildren? I need to take care of them with my estate. 


Each of us has responsibilities and want to take care of our families after we are gone. Making the commitment of a legacy gift does not take away from our ability to take care of our families. Many legacy donors leave a small portion, even 1% or 5% of their estate or retirement plan, to their designated organization(s). 

Leaving a legacy gift also empowers us to teach our children about future planning. Jewish tradition teaches that one of our key duties is to make the world a better place for future generations. Legacy gifts allow us to do just that. 

I am not wealthy, so how can I be a legacy donor? 


Legacy gifts are powerful because nearly everyone has the power to be a legacy donor. We may not have significant wealth during our lifetime, but after we are gone, we will leave behind assets such as a retirement plan, a house, or a car. Designating a portion of these assets to the organizations that mattered most during your lifetime will help celebrate your legacy long after you are gone. 

Legacy Giving

Changing philanthropic culture in Jewish Charleston.

Year 3 Celebration Recap

LIFE & LEGACY donors from across the community share their stories.