Updates from Truman Heartland's President & CEO | President's Blo
 

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President's Blog

News and Updates from President & CEO Phil Hanson

Updates from Truman Heartland's President & CEO

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Phil Hanson shares information on charitable giving trends and how the Truman Heartland Community Foundation is partnering with individuals and organizations across the region to benefit the Eastern Jackson County community.


I am in awe of the Ukrainian people. They have fought back against the Russian invaders with such tenacity and unbending spirit; I know I can speak for everyone at Truman Heartland when I say our hearts go out to the people of Ukraine. We are in absolute awe of their resolve.

Although real estate is usually the most significant asset an individual owns, it is often overlooked as a vehicle for giving. The process may be a bit complicated, but donating real estate is an extremely tax-smart way to contribute to your favorite charity. And Truman Heartland Community foundation can walk you through the process.

Sharon was working on her Certified Nursing Assistant certification (CNA) through Job Skills for New Careers, a collaborative community initiative focused on helping hard-working adults gain the skills they need to qualify for better paying, in-demand careers.

As we enter a third year of battling Covid, somedays it’s hard not to be discouraged. The spread of the omicron variant seems out of control. Hospitals continue to be stressed, and our schools struggle to stay open. We all want to be done with the pandemic, but it just keeps on hanging on. We are all longing for some positive news, something to give us hope.

The generosity of our community continues to impress me. Even when times are tough, like dealing with the aftermath of a global pandemic, our community rises to meet challenges with kindness and generosity.

These last two years have been extremely challenging for everyone. But as we approach the holiday season, it seems like things may be returning closer to normal. We all look forward to family and friends gathering once again to celebrate the holiday season.

The whole Covid experience has somehow warped time for me. It feels like just a few weeks ago my wife and I were hiking through Glacier National Park on one of the hottest days on record, and now it’s nearly Thanksgiving. It’s hard to believe we are now in the fourth quarter of 2021, but the chill in the air and fading daylight are sure signs the year-end will be here before we know it. The year-end holiday season is always the big charitable giving season, and many nonprofits depend on strong support during this time.

We are excited to announce the 2021 competitive grants awards through the Jelley Family Foundation for Children’s Education and Community Grants programs. This year, a new unrestricted grantmaking fund from the Willa L. Fancher and Martha A. Taggart endowment added more than $80,000 to our grantmaking budgets, producing a new record in THCF’s grantmaking, with 62 grant awards totaling $336,582 awarded to agencies serving Eastern Jackson and Cass counties.

Recently, the annual report on charitable giving in the United States was released by Giving USA through the Indiana University Lilly Family School of Philanthropy research. This annual report was first published in 1956 and is recognized in the philanthropy world as the best source for charitable giving information. The great news is that charitable giving was up 3.8% in 2020 and totaled $471.44 Billion. So, even during a pandemic and the shutdown of the economy resulting in the loss of 9.6 million jobs, our fellow citizens continued their tradition of generosity.

Truman Heartland Community Foundation’s 26th annual Toast to Our Towns Gala is just a few months away. This special event is a formal celebration of local philanthropy—an opportunity to recognize those individuals and businesses who go above and beyond to make our towns better places to live, work, and serve.

We are wrapping up another busy scholarship season. It's great to see our local graduating seniors have a more normal first year of college, with the progress we have made battling Covid-19. At this time last year, we were in a very different situation with everything going virtual and real uncertainty on how colleges and universities would address the challenges. The only thing that remained consistent over the last year is the high cost of higher education, averaging $20,000 per year. That is why having a variety of scholarships available to a wide range of students is so important.

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