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Jews Twice as Charitable in Wills

American Jews provide for charities in their wills nearly twice as often as people of other faiths, a new study shows.

The Jews most likely to make bequests to charities — and not just Jewish ones — practiced some aspect of Jewish tradition, including attending synagogue services or visiting Israel, according to Connected to Give: Jewish Legacies today, the first in a series of reports based on data from the National Study of American Jewish Giving. The national study polled nearly 3,000 American-Jewish households.

The Connected to Give study is a collaboration of independent foundations, family foundations, community foundations and Jewish federations working with the Los Angeles-based Jumpstart to map charitable giving by American Jews.

Forty-five percent of Jews who belong to Jewish organizations make charitable gifts in their wills, compared with 15 percent of Jews who don’t affiliate, the study found. The study also showed that 66 percent of respondents whose wills include a charitable bequest have one to a Jewish cause.

Some 74 percent of Jews have wills, compared with 60 percent of non-Jews, according to the study.

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