Cultivating a Legacy: Multi-Generational Family Philanthropy
Bring Families Together
Philanthropy creates an opportunity for family members to join forces and direct resources toward social change now and into the future. Guiding multi-generational philanthropic involvement is a Hirsch specialty — mentoring parents on how to cultivate a giving mindset in younger children, preparing adult children and grandchildren to take on larger leadership roles in a family foundation, advising family succession planning, and more. Our team customizes an approach for each family based on unique needs, dynamics, and legacies.
The process of philanthropic planning enables family members to bond over a mutual sense of meaning and purpose. While each family member may have clear interests and ideas, deciding how and where to give can seem overwhelming when joining together with other family members. By initiating conversations about values and interests and providing the right tools, we’ve helped families align around the many ways to impact today’s most pressing issues.
Create Family Vision and Giving
Our team partners with families to guide both individual and family-focused philanthropy decisions. For years, we’ve worked with multiple generations of San Francisco’s Fisher family. Doris and Donald Fisher founded Gap, Inc. retailer in 1969 in San Francisco and built a substantial philanthropic legacy that they passed onto their adult children and grandchildren. We partner with each Fisher generation in different ways — advising Mrs. Fisher’s giving, and partnering with her three sons together as siblings and engaging each of their families in philanthropic planning and giving on a variety of important issues, including the arts, education, outdoor recreation and the environment, health, and nonprofit capacity. Separately and together they have created an impactful family legacy in San Francisco and beyond.
Build Values-Aligned Impact
As with all philanthropy, ongoing learning and inspiration are important for our multi-generation engagement process. We teach the value of building partnerships with exceptional community leaders, recognizing the power dynamic inherent in philanthropy, and understanding that each organization has inherent strengths and challenges. Hirsch works with younger generations – or those newer to philanthropy – to understand the nonprofit sector through research, site visits, and financial due diligence.
Multi-generational engagement not only helps groom new philanthropists, it also connects family members, enabling them to learn from and engage in giving with each other. Young philanthropists particularly appreciate learning from the experience and networks of their siblings, parents, and grandparents. We navigate family dynamics and mediate conversations to build mutual understanding, philanthropic decisions tied to core individual and family values, and giving that ignites meaningful change.