Saranam Legacy Family Circle

By: Janice Honeycutt Hering


We all want to help as much as possible. We see the potential in our community, but with the daunting enormity of needs, it is important that our resources go as far as they can. Janice Honeycutt Hering, a longtime donor and former Board member, wanted to do more to help and knew that Saranam was just the place to make a big impact.

Janice wanted her donations to have the maximum influence while also providing long-term benefits beyond the year in which she gave. With these goals in mind, she designed an inspired plan to make a little bit go a long way: the Saranam Legacy Family Circle.

We talked with her about this program and why she believes in its impact.

What is the Saranam Legacy Family Circle?

The Saranam Family Legacy Circle is a group of supporters who pledge monthly, or annual, contributions for just five years. All donations are placed in an investment fund with the Texas Methodist Foundation, where the money can grow. If 30 people participate at $100 per month, the returns after five years will be enough to support an entire family for a year, EVERY YEAR.

How did you come up with this idea?

In my work, I talk with a lot of people well versed in investment strategies and a topic that always comes up is legacy giving. Traditionally when we think of legacy giving, it is about people leaving donations in their wills. While this is great and something that absolutely helps, I wanted to do something that made an impact now.

My goal in designing this program is to support one family per year, which is about $37,000. That is likely out of reach for just one person, but working as a group, we don’t have to put in that much money every year. Instead, we can invest a smaller amount now and then let the money work for us. That is why I named it the Legacy Family Circle- to signify the fund’s ability to encircle a family for years to come.

Why are you doing this with Saranam?

I was a member at Central United Methodist Church when Saranam was founded. At the time, Saranam was the best kept secret in Albuquerque, and I wanted to get involved. I joined the Board and got to meet the families and see how much they grew. I was so impressed to see how the needle gets moved!

Being involved showed me what an effective program Saranam is. I always tell people that the key is their 3-legged stool approach. Saranam isn’t just an apartment or house, it’s community and education and life skills. All those things combine to help families problem solve for themselves. At the end of the day, it’s a longer-term solution.

Are there any limitations on who can join the Family Legacy Circle?

No limitations at all! Anyone can join at any time. You can contribute monthly or make annual donations. The goal is to have 30 people join, but if more people are interested, that is great news for Saranam.

Someday, I’d love for there to be many legacy circles that could support even more families. Then with the family support piece taken care of, Saranam can really focus all their efforts on growing the programming they offer and even expanding into new areas.