Living to Make the World Better
Ever since she was a little girl, Christine desired to make the world better. She wanted her life to have a place in the world. One that allowed her to give back.
Christine grew up in Abbotsford, where she was deeply affected by her father’s tragic tales of his journey as a refugee from war-torn Ukraine to Canada. “He arrived here in 1948… My Dad’s early life could have been a novel,” she explains. “[His] story is really motivating for me. It’s that circle. He came as a refugee with nothing … this country has been very good to us, and now we have opportunities to give to others.”
Christine sees herself continuing that circle, “I only have one life and I want it to make as much difference as it can.” When she talks about the causes she supports, you can see the passion light up her eyes.
“Giving is not an obligation. It’s really a privilege and a joy,” Christine reminds us. Her innate compassion for others and generous spirit has marked every twist and turn of her winding career journey. For a time, she counselled women at a sexual assault centre in Saskatoon and then at a transition house for battered women in Abbotsford. Seeing firsthand the overwhelming need for this vulnerable population and their children.
Christine feels that the people she encountered along the way stoked this spark of generosity into a lasting passion to help women and children in need. “Anybody that does development knows that when we empower women, we are empowering children… If mothers are empowered, their children will do well and their communities will do well.”
If mothers are empowered, their children will do well and their communities will do well.
Today, she supports a variety of charities whose work aligns with her heart. Her voice is thick with emotion as she reads a note she received from a local charity, it simply reads, “Thankyou. This [gift] will feed two children for the year.” The simplicity and impact of her gifts come from her belief that we all have the capacity and abundance to do more.
“Life is not just about taking care of my own needs, but that thinking about the needs of others and the wellbeing of others is important too,” states Christine.
Thinking about the needs of others and the wellbeing of others is important too.
As she got older, Christine decided that she wanted to increase her financial giving. “I felt like I wanted my money to have the maximum impact in the world, even when I’m not here anymore.” A planner by nature, she reviewed her Generosity Plan™ with her gift planning consultant and decided that gifting a life insurance policy would allow her to achieve her philanthropic goals.
Christine donated a brand-new life insurance policy to Abundance Canada. This gifting option allows her to receive a charitable receipt for each premium payment, while ensuring a larger future gift to support her favourite charities. “It can be quite a long-delayed gift, but there is also so much more impact with this option than there is when only donating by credit card. This is one way to get a lot more bang for your buck,” she says.
Over the years, Christine has taken a combined approach to giving which she highly recommends. She gives of her time and has a Generosity Plan™ that meets both her short-term and long-term philanthropic goals. “Agencies need to have money today and people need money today, so we wouldn’t want everything to be tied up in a life insurance gift, but I think those longer-term gifts will allow you to give so much more in the long run.”
Through her generosity, Christine is making sure that her life has meaning. When asked what impact she most hopes her generosity will have on the world, Christine states simply, “That women have a future of hope, and they can give a future of thriving and hope to their children.”
Thank you to Christine for sharing your story with us. You can watch her interview and view more generosity stories on our video page.