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Why Giving Matters

Future soaring pilots being mentored

We greatly appreciate the support of our donors through both major gifts and the annual Eagle Fund Drive!

Why Give to the SSA?

It's a reasonable question. The SSA is not trying to find a cure for cancer or eliminate world hunger. So why is the SSA worthy of your philanthropy?

One reason is to expand the sport. We all want to share with others our passion for the magic of soaring. Donations fund outreach efforts to others both in and outside of the aviation community.

Another is our pride and competitive instinct. To excel on the world stage we must fund the development and fielding of future champions -- just like the US Olympic teams.

And there is a third very important reason – perhaps more important that the other two. Philanthropy allows us to mature young people to be outstanding citizens in aviation and elsewhere. The rigor of soaring’s training regime creates young leaders for our sport, for aviation, and for our society.

Past Chair Ken Sorenson put it this way:

"Some bring their children or grandchildren into the sport even if they are not pilots themselves, having recognized that the soaring community provides a great environment for children to grow up in …Youth members do adult things like piloting aircraft, driving airport vehicles, and launching gliders, while interacting with other motivated young people. They have the opportunity to interact with and be subject to instruction from interesting and accomplished adults other than their parents and school teachers. Soaring is an activity that allows young people to develop and excel."

Your gift supporting the growth of soaring, especially through youth, is one way to help grow citizens with values that will be beneficial to us all in addition to promoting the sport that so many of us have spent our lives enjoying and that we are committed to.

The Flight Plan

We generally don't leave the ground without some fairly clear plan for the flight. The SSA's has set its course with six major missions foremost in mind. Endowment resources are necessary to assure the success of each of them. Broadly these missions are:

  • Securing Soaring's Future
  • Providing Lifetime Learning
  • Expanding our Opportunities to Soar
  • Fostering America's International Competitiveness
  • Encouraging New Generations of Soaring Pilots
  • Achieving Safer Soaring

To enable Lifetime Learning the SSA must provide a wide range of services and information to the membership. Soaring magazine, web sites, e-mail lists and newsletters are just some of the communications media that must be developed and used. Training materials at all levels from ab initio through advanced cross-country must be developed and disseminated. Access to improved weather services should be provided. Volunteers will require staff support to do these things effectively. Long-term stable resources are a must.

Expanding our Opportunities to Soar requires a long-term program within SSA to help establish new soaring sites and to protect and foster existing ones as air and land spaces become ever more crowded. Your contributions will provide support for site development and preservation programs and help establish capital funds that can be loaned to clubs and commercial operators for related purposes.

Fostering America's International Competitiveness means providing U.S. international teams with ongoing, stable endowment funded support the will permit the participation and training of our very best pilots and the development of a truly world class team.

The SSA is committed to Encouraging New Generations of Soaring Pilots by helping enthusiastic youth enter and blossom in the sport. Your contributions will help the SSA develop programs and scholarships to encourage high-school youths to earn their wings and to help college-aged youth continue learning and soaring through university and local soaring clubs.

Achieving Safer Soaring is an unending task for the SSA and its Soaring Safety Foundation (SSF), undertaken with a goal of making soaring the safest of all sky sports. The Soaring Safety Foundation has a complete program of safety practices and publications. Your contributions will help continue current programs and sponsor future ones.

We greatly appreciate direct gifts of cash, securities, and in the form of planned gifts. We look forward to the opportunity of discussing with you plans for including testamentary gifts to the endowment in your will and other estate planning documents. We hope you will consider establishing charitable trusts for the SSA's benefit and/or participating in the planned giving programs sponsored by several large financial institutions. We'll be delighted to aid you with the appropriate professional assistance that these matters may require.

A major gift endowment gives rise to many opportunities to immortalize the names of donors or other individuals who donors may designate. The Society wishes to maintain the maximum possible flexibility in this regard, and will gladly explore ways of fulfilling donors' wishes. Members' suggestions for naming opportunities are always welcomed.

Contact us at mylegacy@ssa.org or (575) 392-1177 8 am - 5 pm M-F Mountain Time
The SSA (EIN 95-1932120) is a 501(c)(3) Public Charity. Contributions are tax-deductible to the extent allowed by law.

Posted: 7/18/2018