- Social Media
- Active Citizenship
- Good Giving
- Corporate Responsibility
- Be Fearless
I’m starting my preparations for tax season and just added up my 2008 charitable contributions. This exercise made me realize a couple things: 1) the sum of my contribution dollars added up to much more than my perception of what I was giving annually, and 2) I don’t have a giving strategy! What do I give to and how do I give? Here’s the hodgepodge:
- Larger amounts regularly to organizations I care about – either from having a personal connection to or previously participated on committees, such as ATASK
- Varying amounts to the numerous walks, runs, bikes and hikes on behalf of friends who are participating
- Emotionally and impulsively - I read an inspiring book like Three Cups of Tea or watch a touching movie that portrays images that pulls at my heartstrings like Slumdog Millionaire, and I run for my checkbook (ok, credit card and computer … it’s 2009)
- Small amounts to fun and creative online challenges and fundraisers (check out Beth Kanter’s Birthday Cause)
But just how effective is my giving? What concerns me with not having a strategy is not understanding what the total impact of my contributions is. When I give ad hoc and in response to personal requests, I’m not doing the normal due diligence that I would when considering a larger gift. So, for 2009, my giving resolution is to give more to less organizations that I am confident in their abilities, believe in their missions, and know my dollars are contributing towards meaningful impact. I doubt I’ll be able to resist giving to one-off requests from friends, but I will make sure to learn more about the organizations I am donating to (no matter how small or large the amount).
Of course, this is all a personal preference and choice. You know mine, now tell me yours – more to less or less to more?