"I'm not a hero, I'm a regular guy, and while my primary focus right now
is on building my career and my assets, that doesn't mean I can't set aside
some money to do something for my community." - Benjamin Kis
Giving has always been a priority in Benjamin Kis' life.
As a child, he grew up with parents who shared valuable life lessons on
generosity and community spirit by donating to charities, canvassing and
volunteering their time.
Even as a young
university student, Ben managed to carry out these family values by supporting
causes that mattered to him.
Now a 32-year-old accountant for EnCana, Ben and his wife, Heather, have
decided that it's time to take the next step in reaching their long-term philanthropic
goals by establishing The Kis Brothers
Fund at the Calgary Foundation.
"Heather and I always planned to
do more when we could afford it. Often we would discuss increasing our
donations, but it always made sense to wait another year and re-evaluate," Benjamin recalls.
"Setting up an Endowment Fund seems to be a very practical option that
will have lasting value for our community. Not only is it sustainable, but it's
the beginning of a family legacy for my brothers and future generations."
The oldest of four brothers, Benjamin is serving as a role model for his
family, "By setting up The Kis Brothers Fund, my wife and I are encouraging the
entire family to get involved. We are looking forward to coming together and
deciding as a family about what charities to recommend."
The Kis Brothers Fund reflects the true spirit of family philanthropy by
combining generations of family values and directing them towards a common
"This is a model of charitable giving that aligns with my beliefs of how
to spend wisely," Benjamin explains. "When you think about it, I'm quadrupling
the value of my money. Through EnCana's
Matching Gifts Program, my initial donation of $5,000 was matched,
increasing the value of my Fund to $10,000 and then I receive a tax credit of
When asked why he chose the Calgary Foundation, Ben explained, "Charitable giving is not my area of
expertise, so I wanted to leverage the resources of the Calgary Foundation and their knowledge of community needs."