For The Register-Herald
Locally, the term “philanthropist” is associated with names like Carter and Benedum, families who established lasting endowments that generate income for a wide variety of worthwhile community programs.
However, the donor list of the Beckley Area Foundation demonstrates that everyone can be a philanthropist.
Community foundations offer the opportunity for people to pool their resources, large and small, to create permanent endowments that make a difference today and forever. In many instances these gifts also serve as a lasting memorial to a cherished family member.
Loretta Gregory Maynor, of Shady Spring, died Nov. 1, 2012. The Foundation has received more than 25 memorial donations honoring this special lady. Gifts ranging from a few dollars to hundreds of dollars continue to arrive. Donors include family, fellow church members and friends from this area and from out-of-state.
At the direction of her family, all of these memorial gifts have been added to the Perry Memorial United Meth-odist Scholarship Fund at the Beckley Area Foundation. This scholarship fund was initially established 10 years ago through the combined efforts of many church members.
The contributions to this fund have been invested; the income will provide scholarship assistance year after year, for generations to come.
Anna Neale Hardman Houck-Samworth, mother of local banker and civic leader Charles Houck, died Oct. 12, 2012, in Charlotte, N.C. Her family suggested that memorial gifts be added to the BAF Winton R. Houck Memorial Fund originally established by Charlie in honor of his father. The Foundation has received dozens of donations from family friends living in Beckley, Charleston, Spencer, Cross Lanes, Charlotte, Wilmington, Doylestown, Naples, Oregonia and other diverse locations.
It is fitting that the Maynor and Houck families chose to continue a legacy of service by directing memorial gifts to permanent endowments that will make a difference in the lives of others forever. These amazing women were loved and respected by many for their generous spirit and community involvement. In each instance, an extensive donor base has pooled charitable assets to grow significant named funds while honoring Loretta and Anna Neale.
Anyone who wishes to leave a permanent legacy may make a donation of any amount to the Winton R. Houck Memorial Fund, the Perry United Methodist Church Scholarship Fund or any of the 383 other endowments at the Beckley Area Foundation. Mail contributions to BAF, 129 Main St., Suite 203, Beckley, WV 25801.