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Gift Planning

Amy Wurst

Amy Wurst and dog"I want my gift to be significant—to solve a problem and have an impact."

No Matter What Your Age, Everyone Should Have a Plan For Their Hard Earned Assets
Amy Wurst has been a friend of Children's Mercy for many years. In 2005, Amy let Children's Mercy know that the hospital is a named beneficiary in her will. Amy, now 49, says it was about five or six years ago that she decided she needed an estate plan. With the assistance of her legal advisor, she set up a will and a trust and found it to be a very easy process. "Everyone should have a plan," says Amy.

She also is not shy to say that everyone should include Children's Mercy in their plans. "The hospital will need support for a long time. You can't go wrong by designating Children's Mercy in your will. It will be utilized well." Amy feels strongly that when the time comes, her bequest will be used in an appropriate manner by the hospital and that is why she has not designated her bequest for a specific purpose. "I trust the hospital to use it wisely."

Why Children's Mercy
Amy lives in Kansas City with two awesome therapy dogs, Cabernet (collie) and Sake (mutt). As one of 20 volunteers with the Pet Pals for Patients program at Children's Mercy, Amy has shared her therapy dogs with hundreds of sick children. "It makes me happy I can help. It grounds me and is the highlight of my week," she says. Amy and her therapy dogs have been a part of the Pet Pals program for six years. They come to the hospital on a rotating basis on Thursday evenings and hang out in the Teen Room with patients of all ages. She enjoys seeing the children smiling, laughing and having fun in spite of their condition. "It keeps me balanced and the dogs love it!"

"Children's Mercy is very progressive in utilizing pet therapy," says Amy. It is a normalizing experience for the children and the dogs bring an extra element to their well being. Amy, Cabernet and Sake also work one on one with Occupational and Physical Therapy patients on Wednesday mornings. They take turns with other volunteers and therapy dogs on Wednesdays. Additionally, if a doctor writes a prescription for pet therapy, they will go directly to the patient's room for a visit.

Loyal Supporter
Besides volunteering her time with Pet Pals for Patients and with patients in OT/PT on a one on one basis, Amy serves on the Children's Mercy Volunteer Advisory Council and on the Advocacy committee. She especially likes it when she gets to bring a dog with her to present on behalf of the hospital or accept donations from groups.  She says the kids love to see the dog!

Not only does Amy support the hospital because of its progressive nature, she supports the hospital because of its original mission to treat every child regardless of the family's ability to pay. She is confident in the stability and mission of the hospital and is happy to donate her time now and money later.

Amy is truly a passionate volunteer and advocate. She volunteers heavily with four charities in the Kansas City area and Children's Mercy is honored to be one of them.

We encourage everyone to have a current will or trust whether or not you include Children's Mercy. If you would like more information, please contact Phil Watson at or (816) 701-4339.

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A charitable bequest is one or two sentences in your will or living trust that leave to Children's Mercy a specific item, an amount of money, a gift contingent upon certain events or a percentage of your estate.

an individual or organization designated to receive benefits or funds under a will or other contract, such as an insurance policy, trust or retirement plan

"I give to Children's Mercy, a nonprofit corporation currently located at Kansas City, MO, or its successor thereto, ______________ [written amount or percentage of the estate or description of property] for its unrestricted use and purpose."

able to be changed or cancelled

A revocable living trust is set up during your lifetime and can be revoked at any time before death. They allow assets held in the trust to pass directly to beneficiaries without probate court proceedings and can also reduce federal estate taxes.

cannot be changed or cancelled

tax on gifts generally paid by the person making the gift rather than the recipient

the original value of an asset, such as stock, before its appreciation or depreciation

the growth in value of an asset like stock or real estate since the original purchase

the price a willing buyer and willing seller can agree on

The person receiving the gift annuity payments.

the part of an estate left after debts, taxes and specific bequests have been paid

a written and properly witnessed legal change to a will

the person named in a will to manage the estate, collect the property, pay any debt, and distribute property according to the will

A donor advised fund is an account that you set up but which is managed by a nonprofit organization. You contribute to the account, which grows tax-free. You can recommend how much (and how often) you want to distribute money from that fund to Children's Mercy or other charities. You cannot direct the gifts.

An endowed gift can create a new endowment or add to an existing endowment. The principal of the endowment is invested and a portion of the principal’s earnings are used each year to support our mission.

Tax on the growth in value of an asset—such as real estate or stock—since its original purchase.

Securities, real estate or any other property having a fair market value greater than its original purchase price.

Real estate can be a personal residence, vacation home, timeshare property, farm, commercial property or undeveloped land.

A charitable remainder trust provides you or other named individuals income each year for life or a period not exceeding 20 years from assets you give to the trust you create.

You give assets to a trust that pays our organization set payments for a number of years, which you choose. The longer the length of time, the better the potential tax savings to you. When the term is up, the remaining trust assets go to you, your family or other beneficiaries you select. This is an excellent way to transfer property to family members at a minimal cost.

You fund this type of trust with cash or appreciated assets—and may qualify for a federal income tax charitable deduction when you itemize. You can also make additional gifts; each one also qualifies for a tax deduction. The trust pays you, each year, a variable amount based on a fixed percentage of the fair market value of the trust assets. When the trust terminates, the remaining principal goes to Children's Mercy as a lump sum.

You fund this trust with cash or appreciated assets—and may qualify for a federal income tax charitable deduction when you itemize. Each year the trust pays you or another named individual the same dollar amount you choose at the start. When the trust terminates, the remaining principal goes to Children's Mercy as a lump sum.

A beneficiary designation clearly identifies how specific assets will be distributed after your death.

A charitable gift annuity involves a simple contract between you and Children's Mercy where you agree to make a gift to Children's Mercy and we, in return, agree to pay you (and someone else, if you choose) a fixed amount each year for the rest of your life.

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