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The Fellowship Fund: An Appeal

Posted on December 15, 2014 in General

“A caring community has evolved and is sustained. Our support of each other in our joys and our sorrows, and in ways large and small is the essence of our lives together.”

Quaker Guiding Principles at Pennswood Village, 2002

Since our opening 35 years ago, a central theme reflected in the Quaker Guiding Principles at Pennswood Village is the awareness that a caring community has evolved and is sustained. Part of this caring is the strength of our financial commitment to our residents. Out of respect for the dignity of each resident and to fulfill our charitable mission, no resident will be asked to leave the Pennswood Village community if they have outlived their financial assets.

About the Fellowship Fund

This is where the Fellowship Fund comes in. The Fellowship Fund offers residents confidential support for many of the expenses of daily living at a time when assets may have declined to a point where income and principal are inadequate to meet financial obligations. Partial or full assistance, both ongoing or temporary, is available to residents to meet their individual needs.

“When my parents moved into Pennswood they were healthy and active, well-off, but not wealthy. Their contributions to the Fellowship Fund and the fund for employees were heartfelt, but they did not contain a lot of zeros at the end of them. My father pursued a number of hobbies, and any payment for projects was immediately transferred into the Fellowship Fund. It was his way of paying forward. He did not know that his wife would eventually be a beneficiary of the fund. It was just the right thing to do in his mind. And it certainly was the right thing as far as my mother is concerned. As her health has deteriorated over recent years, the Fellowship Fund has allowed her to stay at Pennswood as her nest egg has diminished. For her Pennswood is home, with wonderful loving care from the entire staff. For her children and grandchildren it is a blessing, knowing that she is cared for so well and that we do not need to worry about her welfare, financial or otherwise. The Fellowship Fund is one of the things that makes Pennswood so special.” – A recipient’s family member

In recent years, due to economic stresses in our country, the demands upon this fund have increased to more than $400,000 per year, which is why we are asking you to consider contributing to the Fellowship Fund. Pennswood Village is recognized by the Internal Revenue Service as a 50l(c)(3) organization. As such, contributions to the Fellowship Fund are eligible to be recognized as charitable donations. Assistance provided also helps to maintain our Pennsylvania Sales and Use Tax exemption.

Assistance provided by the Fellowship Fund is a grant. There is no obligation by the resident or their estate to repay any amounts received. Grants may be used for a wide variety of purposes beyond help with monthly fees and may include other expenses that are essential to the ability to maintain a quality of life with dignity and respect.

The Fellowship Fund ensures that a resident may continue to enjoy a high quality of life and will not have to withdraw from activities and engagements within the community. It is often the small pleasures that enhance the quality of life and the enjoyment of those small pleasures can be important in maintaining a sense of well-being as well as physical and emotional health.

How You Can Help

“We would like to express our sincere gratitude to Pennswood’s Fellowship Fund for the means and peace of mind to our parents in providing financial resources and the ability to remain as residents in the Pennswood community. Our parents planned to be self-sufficient for their entire lives; not wanting to be a burden to their children as they grew older. Their financial planning kept them secure until their mid-80s but fortunately they lived longer than they expected and outlived their ability to completely support themselves. When they realized their finances were close to being depleted, they appealed to Pennswood and received a grant from the Fellowship Fund, which provided immediate relief to subsidize their ability to stay at Pennswood. As a result, they were able to spend their remaining years as active members of Pennswood continuing their lives with friends and the knowledge that the community would always take care of them. No one knows how long one will live but this kind of peace of mind was priceless to them and their family.” – Family member of a recipient

As we enter our 35th year, the Stewardship Committee, Corporate Board, Pennswood Village Resident Association and Administration have identified the Fellowship Fund at Pennswood’s highest priority for giving. Despite the immeasurable good this fund provides, only 19 percent of all gifts to Pennswood have been designated for the Fellowship Fund; we can do better to meet the growing demand.

If you would like to contribute to the fund, here are a few ways you can participate:

  • Write a check to “Pennswood Village.” If you wish to designate particular funds, please note it in the memo line on the check. Checks can be mailed to 1382 Newtown-Langhorne Rd., Newtown, PA 18940.
  • Donate securities. Check with your tax advisor; there may be advantages to donating stocks that have appreciated in value
  • Include Pennswood in your will and become a member of the Founders Society. Our lives are enriched every day because previous residents left money to Pennswood in their estate plans
  • Acquire a Charitable Gift Annuity and become a member of the Founders Society. If you are able to contribute at least $5,000, you may choose to receive a guaranteed income for life at high fixed-annuity rates for you or a designated beneficiary. Our Chief Financial Officer, Michael Griffin, (215-504-1155) will be happy to give you more information about this and other donation options.

Thank you for your continued support of Pennswood Village.