Combined Approach Yields Impact
Marietta and Jim Bala give from the heart, and they use careful analysis to validate their giving decisions. Marietta started supporting CARE with small donations-donations a student could make-back in the 1950s when she was first exposed to CARE packages. Jim's passion for the organization and its work stemmed from his commitment to helping people in the greatest need.
Together, they looked for a way to make a difference-to have the biggest impact. Marietta finds inspiration for which CARE projects she wants to fund by traveling to the field. She has been to Mali, Rwanda, and India and visited Ethiopia this past fall. She explains her special affection for Africa saying, "The people are so loving and warm, and, even though they have so little, they are so responsive."
Jim does his research at his desk-poring over CARE annual reports and project progress reports. "CARE does a good job of giving us insight into what is being accomplished with our gifts. They provide the statistics, but they also share the human dimension."
After many years of annual giving to CARE, the Balas decided to make provision for CARE in their estate plan. "After we achieved financial security for our retirement, we felt our life would be more meaningful if we could focus on helping others. That also became a new priority in terms of our estate planning. We wanted to be able to have an impact even when we can no longer do it directly."
Jim continues, "It's selfish, really, because we've gotten so much in return. CARE has made us feel like family." With the completion of their gifts to CARE through their estate plan, the Balas will be able to continue to express their love of mankind. Their shared values of giving back to those in need will be perpetuated.