I have been in Las Vegas for the Advisors in Philanthropy conference. I was presenting on Philanthropy in A Digital Age with my dear friend and mentor, Lori Stewart. The irony isn't lost on me that we are talking about philanthropy and wealth in a city that has been hit hard by the economic downturn and has a tourist culture of excess and consumerism. But is this very thing that is attractive for someone like me who explores complex issues and looks for ways to address the complexities through social enterprise and venture philanthropy.
I took the last couple of weeks off... Well not exactly "off" but I was on a holiday in Guatemala where I was volunteering for a wonderful NGO - Dentistry for All. You can read about my trip and the people that I met on my Calgary Herald blog. There are four articles posted in the Calgary Herald along with photos from Brodie Wilkinson and Hope Photography. Read more »
This is the 1cent post.
I was thinking about how the little penny can do so much when combined with a bunch of other pennies. Leveraging. It's what strategic donors want to see happen when they invest their charitable dollars.
And along came Andrew & Sarah Sheperd and their mom Karen. Andrew and Sarah are kids who were inspired by We Day that occurred in Calgary a few months ago. Within days of returning home, Sarah had recruited her brother and a group of their friends to solve a water and sanitation problem in Ngosauni, Kenya. They designed a website to tell the story and through the power of their social network have been actively raising... PENNIES. Yup, those little copper coins (that aren't really copper). Their goal - 1Million pennies or $10,000. And they are well on their way.
By linking their networks to other networks and encouraging people to open their wallets of their loose change these two young philanthropists and social change agents are changing the lives of children and their families on the other side of the world.
Got a Penny is more than fundraising for a cause. It is a movement. Care to join?
Last night I presented at the Calgary Council for Advanced Technologies AGM on how technology is influencing the philanthropic experience. What follows are the speaking notes, however, I opted to have a conversation instead of a formal presentation so while my notes capture some of what was discussed, it by no means captures everything. I wish I could remember to bring a recorder, as the dialogue was so interesting and the participants raised really good points and pushed each other to ask further questions about what their role as technologists is in shaping the charitable sector online landscape.
This is the fifth year that we have released a list of organizations that we have worked with and/or evaluated for clients this past year. For more information about these organizations and to make a donation please visit Place2Give. This list is in no particular order broken down into subject matter and geographic influence. Read more »
I am one... a charity evaluator... so I when looking at the plethora of charity evaluation platforms out there I realize that, just like the number of charities doing similar work, there are so many different ways to evaluate how charities are performing. In the NY Times the other day there was an article entitled, “Putting Charities to the Test”, it looks at the different types of evaluation platforms and what you will find when you go online to research charities. In Canada, we don’t have nearly the breadth of charity evaluators, but there are a few. In an effort to provide donors with relevant information to make informed charitable decisions, below is a description of those platforms that look at the Canadian Charitable Sector. Whatever you are choosing as your way of evaluating charities, it is important to know what the underlying analysis is. Read more »
I had the wonderful opportunity to witness grassroots philanthropy in action this weekend. And it was fun! Thank you to Megan Szanik and the team at Espy for such a wonderful afternoon at the #NakedEspy event in support of Prostate Cancer research and support services. The short of it – guys raise $100 and they get $500 worth of clothing provided by Fidelity Jeans and Designal. They were also styled by Espy Stylists – (see photos below of two the best in the city: Clark Whetstone and Jinan). Joining the festivities were some of the YYC Food Trucks, CTV anchor Camilla de Giuseppe, Molson, and Limitless.
During the course of my career I have had the privilege of meeting and conversing with some of North America’s leading business people, politicians, actors and philanthropists. I know that I am lucky. So when I received an email last month from W. Brett Wilson’s publicist to write a review on his book, Redefining Success: Still Making Mistakes I was intrigued and said yes. I take these opportunities as ways to learn more about what others are doing in the world, but it is also an opportunity to gain professional insights that you don’t often get W. Brett Wilson exposed to.
"I'm not a philanthropist - I just volunteer time."
"I'm not a philanthropist - I only give a few dollars here and there."
"I'm not a philanthropist - I'm too young. That's for people who are retired and older."
"I'm not a philanthropist..."
Are you a philanthropist?
Philanthropy - From the Greek words - Phil: Loving, and Anthropo: Mankind. Philanthropia "humanity, benevolence," and Philanthropos (adj.) "loving mankind, useful to man," For the love of Mankind.
Are you a philanthropist? Someone who loves mankind?
We seem to have lost the true meaning of this word as soon as we began looking at it from a transactional experience.
I am in the process of putting together a workshop for Todd Fithian for a group of financial and tax advisors on strategic philanthropy. As part of this preparation, I am reading some short stories on philanthropy and exploring what literists have been saying over the years.
Here are three of my favourites, written at different times, in different countries with a diverse approach to charity and community. You can order the book - The Perfect Gift off of our bookshelf. Amy Kass has done a fabulous job editing and creating this anthology of master works on this very large and somewhat daunting topic.
- The Chair of Philanthromathematics, by O. Henry
- Epilogue: Reb Yozifl and the Contractor, by Sholom Aleichem
- Town Office, by Edward Holmes (obituary)
These are all short stories and I would love to know what you think. Do they make you ask questions about what it means to be a philanthropist? How we should go about building stronger communities? What our responsibility is to each other?
Perhaps this will start a philanthropy bookclub? I look forward to reading your reviews.