Giving Alongside your Trusted Financial Adviser – a New Zealand First

A new partnership between The Gift Trust, and financial services firm Consilium, is being launched this month. A New Zealand first, it will offer Kiwis an opportunity to manage the funds they want to donate to charity through their trusted financial adviser. This will mean the funds have the potential to grow tax free, allowing even more to be donated to good causes over time.

Traditionally, a budding philanthropist would either give directly to a charity or set up a grant making foundation. Today, donors in other countries are flocking in large numbers to an alternative giving vehicle – Donor Advised Funds (DAF), a giving account held by a not-for-profit. 

A DAF is like a savings account for your charitable giving dollars – the equivalent of a “personal foundation”, but without the administrative hassle. A donor places a donation into their giving account and can take an immediate tax credit deduction. The donor can then choose which charities they would like to make grants to, and when. They can build up their funds over time, donate more into their account whenever they like, and choose when to make donations to charities. Read more about how our gift accounts work here.

These funds can be managed by their existing financial adviser, alongside their personal investment portfolio.  The charitable funds can be invested for growth over time, and as they will sit under The Gift Trust’s charitable status, they can attain tax-free growth.

DAFs are growing in popularity around the world, but they are primarily an American phenomenon.  In 2016, US$78 billion was held in DAF accounts in the US alone and over US$14 billion was distributed to charitable causes during the year. While this concept has been around for decades in the US, it is relatively new in NZ. 

In 2011 I moved to New Zealand, having worked for a very successful US financial firm. I was surprised to see no one was offering donor advised giving in New Zealand
— Ben Brinkerhoff, Head of Partner Firm Services at Consilium.

The Gift Trust, a national charitable trust operating in New Zealand since 2009, has recently formed its first adviser partnership with financial services firm, Consilium. This enables Consilium’s growing network of financial advisers to offer a DAF product to Kiwi philanthropists. These financial advisers can support their clients’ giving, while the donors get the advantage of having these gift funds invested by their trusted adviser for tax-free growth.

“This new collaboration means financial advisers can offer an extra service to their philanthropically minded clients, helping them to reach their charitable giving goals. Through Consilium Platform, these clients will be able to track their personal investments, alongside their Gift Trust Gift Account funds”
— says Cheryl Spain, Manager of The Gift Trust

Through this new partnership, donors are also able to access expert philanthropic support from The Gift Trust to help them shape their giving intentions, with a focus on helping donors do more than just send a cheque to their favourite charity once a year.

Our advice and support helps donors to refine their giving in ways they might never have considered themselves – from creating a more proactive and planned approach to their giving, to considering alternative ways to make a gift for impact including matched funding, capacity building grants and more.
— Cheryl Spain


Donors also get peace of mind knowing that each charity they donate to is checked by The Gift Trust to ensure the recipient is maintaining their charitable status and is financially viable. 

Financial adviser Philip Stevenson of Bloomsbury Associates, an adviser working with Consilium, says:


An area of importance to our clients is charitable giving. The Gift Trust offers an opportunity to streamline the gifting process, while adding increased confidence and transparency. It also provides robust due diligence of eligible charities and access to additional support services for clients with complex needs.
— Philip Stevenson, Bloomsbury Associates

A Gift Account managed by an adviser can be set up with a donation starting from $20,000. The Gift Trust also offers a Starter Account for donors who want to start with a contribution from $5,000, but these funds cannot be invested through a financial adviser.

Contact The Gift Trust for more details:  Ph: (04) 391 4438.