As Thanksgiving approaches, this is the time I begin to reflect on the year and remember the bad and the good (I try to focus on the good!). As I think about my life, I know I have been enormously blessed. I am healthy, lucky to live in a beautiful city, and grateful to have had the opportunity to use my talents that allow me to help others and provide for my family.
I am about to welcome my family to honor my father’s 90th birthday and to celebrate his incredible life. He was born in 1931 in Poland and survived WWII despite the odds. He came to the U.S. to start a new life at the age of forty-five with $20, a wife, and two little kids. I am very grateful to have had so much time to learn from him. While his determination to build a new life was no doubt the reason for his success, he was given a helping hand by landing in a community of immigrants who helped him restart his engineering career.
At Eckert Byrne, we are part of a community who are also fortunate and generous in how they give to loved ones and to charities. Giving to charity reminds me of a required action of the Buddhists called “Dana.” This idea includes selfless giving and sharing (to a group of people, a single being, a modern-day charity) without any anticipation of return. Jack Kerouac, the notoriously lapsed bodhisattva, famously wrote, “Practice charity without holding in mind any conceptions about charity.”
It is with this in mind we ask you to think of sharing with a charity or group in need this holiday season. Personally, I have been constantly impressed with the work of Save the Children. Save the Children was founded more than 100 years ago by a woman named Eglantyne Jebb. Since then, they have improved over 1 billion young lives by providing children with a healthy start to life, the opportunity to learn, and basic protection from harm. Their work here in the Boston area, through Save the Children’s Boston Leadership Council, has helped raise awareness for the vulnerable and marginalized children in the United States and abroad.
I’m especially looking forward to attending Save the Children’s Boston Leadership Council’s gala event scheduled for this upcoming April, which includes a discussion between Secretary John Kerry and his daughter, Vanessa Kerry, about the impact of climate change on children’s health. Please let me know if you have any interest in learning more about the event.
Whether you decide Save the Children is your charity of choice this holiday season, or you have another group close to your heart, we believe our entire community benefits when generous giving is selflessly presented.
Giving is often discussed this time of year, because we are close to the tax-end calendar year. If donations are made by 12/31, you can gain an income tax deduction for the value of a charitable gift.
If you would like to learn how to implement charitable giving through your estate, please reach out to our legal assistant Noah Evans at [email protected] to schedule a legal check-up meeting with the team and myself.
Wishing you a wonderful Thanksgiving!
P.S. The upcoming winter holidays are affecting our office hours. The office will be closed for Thanksgiving Day (11/25) and the following Friday (11/26). The office will also be closed in December from December 27th to December 31st.