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Reflect Her Growing Gratitude

Jo Ann Clark’s support of Braille Institute began almost two decades ago with a loved one’s need to stay connected to the world. Today, it continues with her regular, generous donations to an organization she describes as “a group of very warm people with whom I have a personal relationship.”

In the mid-1990s, Jo Ann’s husband, Bruce, began losing his vision through a combination of macular degeneration and glaucoma. “I used to see him at home bringing the newspaper closer and closer to his face,” she recalls, “and at first I wasn’t sure what was going on.”

As Bruce’s sight waned, he began attending technology classes at Braille Institute Santa Barbara. “He was very into the stock market,” Jo Ann says, “and he wanted to learn how to use the computer to follow his investments.” While Bruce took advantage of the free classes and programs at Braille Institute, Jo Ann volunteered there.

One day in 1999, while tidying up a display of Braille Institute periodicals and flyers, Jo Ann came across a pamphlet on how donors could support Braille Institute through a charitable gift annuity funded with real estate. “After reading it together, Bruce and I decided it would be a good thing to do with a house I’d inherited from my mother.”

A “No Hassles” Process

Jo Ann was thrilled with the “no hassles” process and that Braille Institute handled everything. “We deeded the house to them and received a very good annuity rate in exchange for fixed monthly payments guaranteed for the rest of both of our lives. Plus, we were helping Braille Institute.”

Indeed, she and Bruce continued to find even more ways to support Braille Institute, which had so freely given them so much support; first by gifting their IRA, and then by including Braille Institute in their will. The Clarks were impressed by the warmth, professionalism, and efficiency with which they were treated each time.

“My CPA, who always guided and counseled Bruce and me, thinks giving to Braille Institute is an absolutely great idea, too.”