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Graham and Kathy’s generous bequest

This former Sydney couple share what drove them to leave a generous gift to NextSense in their Will.
image of a couple looking at the camera and smiling, the man has his hand on the woman's shoulder
  • Vision
  • Hearing

After many years of supporting children with hearing and vision loss through NextSense, (then known as the Royal Institute for Deaf and Blind Children, or RIDBC) Graham and Kathy Townend made the generous decision to leave a lasting legacy through a gift in their Wills. They say this decision was driven by two things—their desire to use their assets to have a positive impact and a desire to support future generations.

We are privileged that we have been given an opportunity to support the important activities and objectives of NextSense in the form of a bequest/legacy in our Wills.

— Kathy Townend

Graham and Kathy’s long journey with NextSense first began in the 1980s when they stumbled across a market being held at the NextSense premises at North Rocks.

'We were delighted to get into conversation with a person with connections to NextSense who explained to us the organisation’s purpose and how it met the needs of the community,’ says Graham.

That initial conversation was the beginning of a 20-year relationship with NextSense where the couple generously donated to support the work we do to help children and adults with hearing and vision loss reach their full potential.

Back then, Graham and Kathy were a young couple working hard to secure their future. They had a house, mortgage, and only a few assets.

‘Bequests played no part in our lives at this time since we did not have the resources to provide any,’ says Kathy.

‘As we began to use our abilities and talents to establish our home and lifestyle over the next 20 years, we began to assess what the accumulation of assets means to us.’

Graham and Kathy had a key realisation―that their assets were not a part of them and did not define who they were.

‘We saw our assets as resources we had custodianship of to help us to achieve objectives, and we had an obligation to preserve and manage those resources to pass onto future generations to help them meet their objectives,’ Graham says.

The couple also had a second driver for their decision to leave a bequest.

‘We realised that many people in the community, did not have the same opportunity as us because of the challenges surrounding their disability,’ Kathy says.

‘Instead, many individuals and those who support them, may have to spend more time navigating the world and managing their disability. Making donations to NextSense, for us, was a clear link to such a reality.’

Graham says: ‘The bequest process we developed has since stood the test of time and remains just as important to us today as it was when first developed. Our focus remains on assessing not-for-profit organisations that support and enhance the lives of members of our community with disabilities’.

‘We are grateful that NextSense continues to enhance the lives of so many people, especially the most vulnerable in our community―our children. They have done so in the past and will no doubt continue to do so in the future. We are privileged to place our resources in their hands.

‘We found making a legacy to NextSense very easy and straightforward―its true empowerment is the difference it makes to future lives.’

Leave a gift to support children with hearing and vision loss in your Will.

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