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Ashley White (’14) gives presentation to seniors at area church regarding end-of-life care

Ashley White (’14) gave a presentation regarding Advance Directive documents to older members of Mount Zion Baptist Church on Monday, Nov. 4.

White provided legal information on the purpose of wills and powers of attorney to members of the church.

“The presentation  included giving information on Advance Directives, which allow patients to spell out decisions about end-of-life care ahead of time in order to avoid confusion at a later time,” she said. “I also explained the value of having a  living will and a durable power of attorney for health care.”

According to Professor Beth Hopkins, Wake Forest Law’s director of outreach, there were an abundance of people in attendance, and they were invited to come back next spring.

“It was delightful watching Ashley work her magic as she walked the mostly over 70 crowd through the documents,” Hopkins said.

Associate Dean of Administration and Student Services Ann Gibbs expressed her excitement about White’s work in an e-mail.

“We are so proud of you,” she wrote to White. “Many thanks for your dedication to serving our community. You and other students continue to amaze me as you generously share your time and knowledge to help folks who need a helping hand!”

According to White, in order to ensure that an individual’s estate is managed in accordance with their wishes, a will is one of the most effective document to use for the execution of such desires in an ideal manner.

“As one of the most important documents that any individual should have, it can provide for the welfare of one’s family and the efficient distribution of one’s estate,” she explained. “Along with a will, powers of attorney and a living will are additional useful ways for one to preserve control over their property and uphold personal desires in the event of physical or mental incapacity.”

White added that she believes it’s important for people to understand the importance of having these documents prepared before they are necessary.

“While each document is significantly important, people neglect to have them made, whether due to personal preferences or because they just forget. To me, it is essential for individuals to understand that the most efficient approach to an effective estate plan is to be knowledgeable about the function of these documents and know how each can affect their loved ones after they are gone. Even more importantly, it was important to express that when taken together, these documents should provide for an effective estate plan, which articulates the intentions of the individual executing the documents.”