Acting on Grateful
By Barbara Tuckner, Hammer Board of Directors and Family Member
When families share their stories about Hammer and the services they provide for our loved ones, inevitably a family member will land on the word grateful.
Grateful for the love and support direct care providers extend to our loved ones during good times and not so good times. Grateful for the smart and entrepreneurial way Hammer has parlayed its resources to care for the diverse needs of so many for a very long time. Grateful for an administration and board that nurtures a culture of care, innovation and philanthropy. Like many of you, I sometimes find it difficult to fully express how grateful my family is for Hammer.
My sister Janet's journey to Hammer began when she emerged from an eight-month coma after being stricken with spinal meningitis. Her return home at the age of 3 was both celebratory and stressful. Like most, we too cried, persevered and cheered her on as she re-learned how to walk, feed herself, use the bathroom and other daily tasks. We watched our parents navigate a very sparse and undeveloped patchwork of services for the developmentally disabled. When Janet found her first home at Hammer in 1978, she struggled to get used to her new surroundings, but Hammer was there to reinforce her skills and integrate her into this special community. Eventually, Janet would settle into her new life and develop lifelong friendships.
Our dad, Jerry Tuckner, joined the Hammer community in 1978 and was active on the board and finance committee. He poured his heart and soul into Hammer and along the way, managed to impress upon us how important it was to tangibly express our gratitude to Hammer. Hammer was critical in Janet's quality of life, but also in the lives for so many more people with developmental disabilities who needed extra support to live independently. It was Dad's passion to make sure Hammer would have a stable source of funding so it would be around much longer than he was.
Now, almost 40 years later, Janet is living comfortably in her own Hammer apartment with her hairy cat, Fresca, and is surrounded by countless pictures of friends and family. Like all of us, Janet's life is not perfect, but Hammer remains her constant and undaunted companion to bolster, cajole, affirm and pick up the pieces when necessary. To extend this system of support and love to Janet on a daily basis is nothing short of extraordinary.
The most tangible way I can express my gratitude to Hammer for its unyielding support of Janet and so many others they serve is to include Hammer in my estate plan. Being a member of the Alvina Hammer Heritage Planned Giving Society at Hammer is not only a charitable thing to do, it is smart too. Planned giving secures Hammer's future and makes it less vulnerable when economic times are tough or funding sources decline.
It is my hope that my gift will help sustain Hammer long after Janet and I are gone. It just seems like the right thing to do to show my gratitude.
The information on this website is not intended as legal or tax advice. For such advice, please consult an attorney or tax advisor. Figures cited in any examples are for illustrative purposes only. References to tax rates include federal taxes only and are subject to change. State law may further impact your individual results. Annuities are subject to regulation by the State of California. Payments under such agreements, however, are not protected or otherwise guaranteed by any government agency or the California Life and Health Insurance Guarantee Association. A charitable gift annuity is not regulated by the Oklahoma Insurance Department and is not protected by a guaranty association affiliated with the Oklahoma Insurance Department. Charitable gift annuities are not regulated by and are not under the jurisdiction of the South Dakota Division of Insurance.