Meet The Partners: Zelda Benson

Having dedicated much of her life thus far to helping people overcome obstacles and challenges in their personal lives, Impact Giving Partner Zelda Benson plans to continue just that in her newly-retired lifestyle. Her motto: “It’s not a matter of if, but how.” 

Zelda grew up in Whittier, California, became very involved in her community at a young age, and landed the perfect career as a Certified Financial Planner. Her life experiences have led her to find joy in assisting others who are in the process of reaching their goals. In times of trouble, she encourages others to think creatively and expansively to develop alternatives paths.

During her time as a Certified Financial Planner, Zelda welcomed three children and four grandchildren into the world, all of which live locally in Southern California now. 

George and Zelda Benson on road trip.

Recently retiring after 32 years as a financial planner, Impact Giving Partner Zelda Benson has much to be thankful for and has big plans for the future. With her business passed along to her trusted partner, Zelda has found time to travel. Most notably, she and her new husband, George, were able to take a 3,800-mile road trip up to Canada and down the coast in their 1959 Triumph TR3. Next destinations on their list include vacations to Maui and Fiji, both of which were won in local charity auctions. 

In addition to travel, Zelda is now spending copious amounts of time with her family. As something she cherishes most, she looks forward to gathering her grandchildren to pass along traditions and family secrets for generations to come. One of her favorite events is ‘Cookie Day’ in which all of her family comes together to make about 1700 cookies that they then share with neighbors and friends. To Zelda, nothing beats having 4 generations, man, woman and child in one kitchen at the same time. 

Benson Family Cookie Party

Zelda Benson’s other retirement hobbies include reading, exercising, and giving back to organizations she feels passionately about. She has been actively practicing yoga and walking regularly. Zelda has always been an advocate for improving your health and in turn, ensuring a great quality of life. 

It didn’t take long for Zelda to join Impact Giving. Her experience can be described as love at first site. Now as an Impact Giving Partner of 3 years, Zelda has served as a non-profit sponsor as well as attended events and the book club. She has yet to serve on a grant committee.

This past year, the charity which Zelda sponsored, The Samburu Project, was one of six nonprofits to receive a grant. Samburu, meaning “butterfly people,”  is a remote community of about 225,000 in Kenya. Everyone in the community has typical, daily chores, but the most important chore of the women and girls is walking up to 12 miles every day looking for water. Many times the family members return with unclean water or none at all. The Samburu Project aims to ease this burden on the people of Samburu.

Zelda Benson in Samburu, Kenya.

Zelda Benson and her husband had the opportunity to see the work that The Samburu Project does first hand in Kenya last year and was blown away by the progress made over recent years. Their 2019 Impact Giving grant will continue to help the developing area by providing the following:

  • $22,000 for a water well to support community of approximately 1000 people.
  • $2,400 provides Samburu Sisters Workshop (SSW) for that community.
  • Mandatory hygiene and sanitation workshops are completed by each well community.
  • SSW provides education for about 150 women on health, leadership, importance of education, rights to equality.

For Zelda, the biggest benefit of joining Impact Giving has been the opportunity to meet other like-minded, dynamic, and giving women. She has enjoyed learning about the numerous local and international nonprofits with other Impact Giving Partners, but especially enjoys sharing her love for The Samburu Project. 

Zelda believes Impact Giving is a remarkable organization that every woman needs to consider joining. So much so that she’s making inviting new members one of her top priorities – We like the sound of that! 

Thank you for all that you do for Impact Giving, Zelda. We appreciate your commitment to our organization and love that you introduced us to The Samburu Project, as they are now near and dear to our hearts.