When Georgina passed away unexpectedly in 2011, her sisters, Carla, Wanda, and Aureene, were left with the difficult task of creating a legacy that would honour Georgina’s compassion and commitment to equality. The Costuros sisters felt that Georgina’s values resonated with the work of The MATCH Fund, and we were the recipient of a legacy gift that significantly contributed to our inaugural year of grantmaking.
Julia Ehrhardt, our Fundraising Coordinator, recently spoke with Georgina’s sister, Carla, to learn more about what led her and her sisters to give a legacy gift on behalf of Georgina to The MATCH Fund.
Julia: Can you tell me about your sisters and you family?
Carla: I am the eldest of four sisters, each three years apart. Our Mom was a strong feminist influence, although she would never have articulated it that way. She regularly expressed her frustration with the inequality of opportunity and privilege between men and women. Without articulating it, she instilled in us the deep conviction that the inequity in women’s rights and human rights was wrong.
Julia: Can you tell me a little bit about Georgina?
Carla: Georgina was highly intelligent, and independent – not one to follow what others are doing. She was a very compassionate person, and though of limited means, donated what she could to various humanitarian causes. When called upon for support by family, or for causes near and dear to her heart, she was often the first to make a contribution.
Julia: What drew you and your sisters to support The MATCH Fund through Georgina’s legacy?
Carla: When Georgina passed away, she left a note that requested her estate be left to people, and animals in need. The MATCH Fund was a really significant opportunity for her legacy to benefit girls and women in a much larger way than Georgina could have imagined.
Julia: Why is the work of The MATCH Fund important to you and your sisters?
Carla: As a textile artist and educator, much of my travel has been to the global South to study indigenous, ethnographic and historical textiles, which are often produced by women. In Guatemala, Peru, Mexico, Jamaica, and India, I have witnessed the lives of women and children, not only the hardship and inequity of opportunity, but the strength, perseverance, and determination of these women to not only survive and improve the lives of their children, but also to continue to create beauty and maintain cultural values.
In many cases, as in Canada, it is the Indigenous women who are taking on community leadership and resistance. I want to contribute to the empowerment of girls and women in transforming their lives, their communities, and the world.
Julia: How would you like Georgina’s legacy to be remembered?
Carla: We hope that Georgina’s legacy gift will mean that lives are transformed; that equality, opportunity, and sustainability can be achieved. We hope that Georgina’s life has a powerful impact and that her values and spirit will live on through the children and women she has supported.
The Costuros family’s gift to The MATCH Fund has had a deep impact on our work and that of the 20 women’s rights organizations we are supporting this year. Thank you Carla, Wanda, Aureene, and Georgina.
To learn more about legacy giving, please click here.