Estate & Planned Giving

Your contribution supports natural habitat, helps birds thrive, and connects people to nature.

When ASWP was organized in 1916 by members of the Southwestern Pennsylvania community it created the foundation for the community involvement and support that continues today. We know that environmental education leads to engagement in conservation, which, in turn, makes a significant difference in the health of our environment and the health of birds that spend time in Southwestern Pennsylvania.

We want to find the best way to help you make a donation that supports creating connections to birds and nature, while meeting your needs. Planned gifts help accomplish that goal.

Your donation can be designated or undesignated. If you would like to have your gift go toward a specific project or use let us know. We can tell you if your gift can be used as you intend and make sure your support will only be used as a contribution toward that designated project. If you do not have a specific use in mind the ASWP board will determine how your undesignated gift can best be used to help special projects in need of funding, our endowment which supports the continuation of our mission, or our operations so that we can continue to keep our nature reserves open to the public and offer outreach programming to the Southwestern Pennsylvania community.

The information provided here summarizes some giving options. You should seek out your own advisors before pursuing any of these planned giving opportunities to gain a fuller understanding of them and determine what will work for you. Likewise, ASWP will work with our board and advisors to determine what the organization can responsibly manage. If you would like to pursue making an estate or planned gift please give us a call at 412-963-6100.

Planned Giving Opportunities


Bequests are gifts from your will or trust that do not affect your cash flow during your lifetime. You can put this type of gift in place when you name Audubon Society of Western Pennsylvania as a beneficiary in your will or living trust. If you already have a will, you can add us as a beneficiary by executing a one page amendment called a codicil. You can choose to designate a specific amount or asset as a donation or you can designate a percentage of your estate.

This type of gift is beneficial to you because it does not decrease your assets during your lifetime and contributions to a charity are tax free after a person has passed away. Also, if your situation changes, you can modify your gift.

Real Estate

By donating real estate, you transfer your property’s deed to Audubon Society of Western Pennsylvania through an outright gift or through our purchasing the property from you at a discounted price. You would need to have a fair market appraisal done to demonstrate the property’s value to claim your charitable income tax deduction. This type of gift can be beneficial to you if managing the property has become burdensome. Also, you will not have to pay capital gains tax and you will receive an income tax deduction for your donation.

You can even transfer the title of your home to ASWP and retain the right to live there. Then, when you no longer need the property ASWP can determine if we want to use the property or sell it to support our mission. ASWP will have an ad hoc committee review any gifts of this type to ensure the we can manage any responsibilities associated with this gift.

Life Insurance

If you have a life insurance policy that you do not need or that is more coverage than necessary, you can transfer the policy ownership to ASWP. The policy can be fully paid or still have premium payments due. You can receive a charitable income tax deduction for this donation and if there are still premium payments due and you continue to make a donation in the amount of the premium to ASWP then you may continue to receive income tax deductions for those donations. By contacting your insurance carrier or a professional appraiser you can determine the policy’s value. The income tax deduction you will receive will be equal to the cash surrender value of the policy. ASWP can either keep the policy active or sell it.

Alternatively, you can name ASWP as a beneficiary on your policy. This can be done through using the insurer’s change of beneficiary form. If your situation changes, you can always change this designation.


You can use appreciated stocks, bonds, and mutual funds you have held for more than one year to make a contribution to ASWP’s mission. The security certificate for your accounts can be transferred electronically into ASWP’s account. Call us at 412-963-6100 and we will send you the account information to make the transfer.

Charitable Remainder Annuity Trust

Through a charitable remainder annuity you can put cash, stock, real estate, collectibles, or business interests into a trust. The trust will then pay beneficiaries a fixed amount annually. Capital gains taxes will either be deferred or forgiven and you will receive a charitable income tax deduction for a portion of the value of the assets you transferred to the trust. Also, because these assets have been transferred to the trust they are no longer a part of your taxable estate. The trust can be funded for life or for a term of years and when the term ends the remaining funds will come to ASWP. This gift option provides tax benefits, a fixed payment to you and other named beneficiaries, and a donation to our mission.

Charitable Remainder Unitrust

This trust option differs from the charitable remainder annuity trust in that the payments the trust will make to you and other beneficiaries are not fixed; they are a fixed percentage of the principal amount, so the payments may increase over time. Also, payments can be made for the beneficiaries’ lifetimes, for a term of up to 20 years, or a combination of both. When the term for the trust ends, the remaining funds will come to ASWP.

Charitable Lead Trusts

In this trust option the fixed annual payments come to ASWP and the remainder of the trust goes to your family or others you designate when the trust term ends. The benefit of a charitable lead trust is that it allows you to reduce or completely avoid gift and estate taxes and potentially increase what you can leave to your family.

ASWP is a 501c3 tax exempt nonprofit organization. Our Employer Identification Number (EIN) is 25-1324559.