For many, giving back is a central theme for the Holiday Season. The gift of giving originates from many influences. Religious training for some. Cultural norms of families, society and cultural practices for others.

This quote has been special to me. “Service to others is the rent you pay for your room here on earth.”~ Muhammad Ali. Those of us who have received many blessings often decide to share with others in a variety of ways.

Giving Back: The 3 T’s

I remember a concept about “giving back” that was presented many years ago. The “Three T’s oh giving. Time, Talent and Treasure are the ways we all can provide service to others. Each “T” suggests a way we can add to our society.


Clearly, simply offering our ability to help and provide friendship to others can lift someone’s spirits. Another can be helping with a a simple project like distributing food or helping build or complete a simple project is valued. Of course, it can be very simple, Complexity is unnecessary when going back.


Each of us has something we can do that can contribute. Maybe it is being a member of a committee or volunteer board. Maybe accounting skills can be provided to improve an organization or persons financial understanding. All talents and skills can be helpful in someway. Skilled tradespeople have many skills to use their special and unique talents to help. Everyone has a talent to share!


Giving back using financial resources is front and center when it comes to philanthropy. Clearly, the amount of mailings and advertising by some non-profits serve to keep giving money top of mind. That said, “treasure” is but one option of the three. Yet, it also presents a number of special opportunities to share financial resources. Beyond simply writing a check, there are a cornucopia of choices that can be used to maximize the value of a gift.

Trusts, Etc.

In addition, vehicles such like a Charitable Remainder Trust or Charitable Lead Trust can be effective lifetime giving tools. Gifts of life insurance that is no longer needed can also be an cost effective way to give back. Even simply gaining the tax advantages of gifting highly appreciated property is useful to consider.

Summary: There are thousands of ways to give back to society including some that require no use of financial resources. For me, I find it helpful to thinking about all the “Three T’s” of giving. At the same time, for those looking for effective planning of financial funds there are multiple tools to consider. Let us know if we can help

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