Creating a Brighter Future for Children

Harry Argovitz and Kiki Tobor

Harry Argovitz and Kiki Tobor

Doting great-grandpa Harry Argovitz knows a good deal when he sees one. So when he learned about charitable gift annuities available through Texas Children's Hospital, he jumped at the opportunity to establish one that will help his beloved great-granddaughter, Mackenzie "Kiki" Tobor. His annuity will ultimately benefit the hospital's program aimed at treating and finding cures for the painful, lifelong disease that afflicts his great-granddaughter- juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, or JRA.

Kiki, now 5, was diagnosed with JRA just a month after her 3rd birthday and has been treated at Texas Children's ever since. She was the Houston Hero of the 2009 Arthritis Walk held in May.

Kiki's diagnosis stunned the whole family. At the time, says mom Stephanie Tobor, Mr. Argovitz's granddaughter, "We didn't even know that arthritis was something that affected children, and we were heartbroken to learn about its potential for chronic joint pain and damage and its immunosuppressant aspect. During her first year with it, Kiki had pneumonia twice, has chronic anemia and gets lots of bruises."

With his precious Kiki now counted among the nearly 300,000 children in the U.S. who suffer from juvenile arthritis, Mr. Argovitz began supporting Texas Children's rheumatology program with gifts several times a year.

Stephanie also relates, "Seeing my child's pain, I needed to find a way to help, so I decided to hold a fundraiser." She and husband, Robert, opened their home in October 2007 for a dinner that raised over $30,000 from more than 60 friends and family-among them, of course, Harry Argovitz.

A few months later, Mr. Argovitz says, "When I got the annuity pamphlet in the mail from Texas Children's and saw the payment rate for those my age, I was ready to give again." He and Stephanie set about working with the hospital's planned giving office to create an annuity that meets his personal and charitable goals.

At age 91-"and holding," he says—Mr. Argovitz has built two successful careers. For many years he owned and ran a hardware store in Borger,Texas, but sold the store and "retired" for the first time in 1958. He and his late wife, Rose, began raising Stephanie as a toddler, and they moved to Houston in 1978. Here, Mr. Argovitz continued his second career as a real estate investor and only a few years ago passed daily management of many investments over to Stephanie.

Mr. Argovitz's thoughts on his philanthropy are simple: "When it comes to children, we all melt. But you can't tell the next person what to do. It's up to them to want to give—and if they get involved, they'll want to give."

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A charitable bequest is one or two sentences in your will or living trust that leave to Texas Children's Hospital 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 Texas Children's Hospital, a nonprofit corporation currently located at Houston, TX, 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 Texas Children's Hospital 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 Texas Children's Hospital 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 Texas Children's Hospital 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 Texas Children's Hospital where you agree to make a gift to Texas Children's Hospital 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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