Gifts made to a non-profit charity’s endowment fund are seen as gifts that keep on giving and which help organizations become financially sustainable. Why is this the case? An endowment is a fund of money held in perpetuity. The money in this fund is invested in stocks, bonds, and other vehicles, and an annual income is earned from this investment; the principal remains intact. The return from the investment of this money may be used for a charity’s projects, programs, or general operating fund. Gifts to endowments can be made from many sources, including cash, property, or securities, and may be received as a lump sum or, in the case of deferred or planned giving, over time.