Category Archives: Donors

A Higher Degree of Giving

Endowment gifts provide lasting support for local charities

Steve Kamm with students
Retired professor Steve Kamm used an IRA Charitable Rollover gift to create an endowment for Oklahoma City Community College international students.

After living and studying abroad during his own college years, Steve Kamm understands the unique challenges faced by international students. During his 39 years teaching at Oklahoma City Community College (OCCC), Steve’s experiences traveling the world helped him connect with students from other countries and they naturally gravitated toward his classes. Although Steve retired in 2011, he continues to help international students through an endowment fund he established at the Oklahoma City Community Foundation.

“When I learned that most financial aid programs are not available to international students, I wanted to find a way to help,” Steve said. “My financial advisor suggested the Oklahoma City Community Foundation.”

By working together with our development director, Joe Carter, Steve is achieving his goal of supporting students now and well beyond his lifetime. Steve established a charitable gift annuity that yields annual payments to him. After his death, the remaining value in the annuity would establish the Kamm International Student Fund to support awards for international students attending OCCC.

While Steve liked the idea of receiving an annual income from his gift, he also wanted to help students during his lifetime. Once Steve turned 70 ½, his tax situation changed and he was able to utilize the IRA charitable rollover provision to create the Kamm International Student Fund now, instead of after his death.

“Everyone my age realizes when you turn 70 ½, you are required to take a minimum distribution from your retirement account,” Steve said. “By making an IRA charitable rollover gift with those funds, I didn’t have to pay taxes on the distribution and I could begin helping international students now through the endowment fund.”

The Kamm International Student Fund distributes annual funding to OCCC, enabling the college to present the first award for international students this spring.

“International students add so much to the OCCC community,” said Randy Cassimus, OCCC acting director of development. “Their experiences and willingness to share their perspectives help broaden vistas for classmates who, quite literally, may have never traveled beyond the state line. We are so grateful to Mr. Kamm for the philanthropic action he has taken to further enrich life experiences for all of our students.”

Learn how you provide lasting support to any of the 360 charities with endowment funds at the Oklahoma City Community Foundation in our recent Charitable Organization Endowment Program Review below. To learn more about our tax-wise giving options like an IRA Charitable Rollover gift, contact Joe Carter at 405/606-2914.

Coordinating Health Care for Oklahoma City’s Homeless

The Open Arms Clinic at the City Rescue Mission was recently featured on KFOR-TV.

For residents of City Rescue Mission, the struggles of homelessness can present serious barriers to maintaining their health. When faced with the challenges of finding affordable housing and a sustainable income, health care is often just one more obstacle to overcome. Thanks to a grant from our Access to Health Care iFund program, a new triage clinic is making health care more attainable for Oklahoma City’s homeless population.

The clinic is a collaboration between City Rescue Mission and Open Arms Clinic, a charitable health care provider that has been serving Oklahoma City since 1993. Located onsite at City Rescue Mission, the clinic provides free medical services to mission residents through a triage nurse who assesses the level of care needed and coordinates follow-up services.

“When you have a significant homeless population without access to basic health care, they are often left with no choice but to use expensive emergency services that can have a tremendous impact on the community,” said Rosemary Hayes, Open Arms development and volunteer coordinator.

The triage clinic is helping to eliminate the use of emergency medical services for non-emergency needs. Within the first four months, the clinic served 329 patients, with only 30 requiring emergency care. Before the clinic opened, City Rescue Mission says EMS was called on a daily basis. Now, the rate of EMS calls has dropped by 24 percent.

“Many patients don’t have access to over-the-counter medications,” said the clinic’s triage nurse. “With the opening of the clinic, they can now be treated for minor ailments such as a migraine or a rash without ever leaving the facility.”

An initiative of the Oklahoma City Community Foundation Trustees, the iFund program utilizes gifts from donors to support services for children and elderly, as well as provide access to health care. Since 2011, the iFund program has awarded more than $2.5 million to charitable organizations serving central Oklahoma. Charitable organizations providing health care services and programs for the elderly in central Oklahoma can apply for the next round of iFund grants by April 14. Donors interested in making a charitable gift to support iFund grants can visit and click on Donate Now.