Giving for Greater Impact

By: Bella
Bella is a participant in the Emerging Leaders in Philanthropy: Changemakers class. 

A giving circle in technical terms is a form of participatory philanthropy where groups of individuals donate their own money or time to a pooled fund, decide where to give the funds away to charity or community projects and, in doing so, seek to increase their awareness of and engagement in the issues covered by the charity or community project. But a giving circle to me is a groups where you donate time, talent and money to a passion of you and your group. Giving circles can also have a greater impact on an organization, where as an individuals donation can only go so far. 
A giving circle has many benefits, the major on is a greater impact. Another benefit is having engagement with the community, friends, family and neighbors. In a giving circle engagement is key, because it is is participation. My group of AFG participants worked together and engaged together to raise money and talk about the most eye opening issues to ourselves and our passionate issues. This way we could make a difference in not only our lives but in others. 
Some of the challenges that I faced was deciding the organization that needs that most help, because one issue is not better that the other, it is where u are passionate about helping make a difference in that issue to support the solution not the problem. Another issue I faced was making my voice herd, because in a giving circle it is hard to all say an equal amount of ideas, but I found that listen is just as important as speaking and even then listen to some on can inspire even greater thoughts than u imagined. 

I am most proud of reaching our goal of 100 dollars which was matched by AFG. We raised 106 dollars and ended up to by 212 dollars, by the end. I am also proud, because I now realize how much more of a impact you/we can have on some one. With this money we decided to complete a project and donate the rest to working towards completing a project. 

Something to Talk About: GPS 2013

On Monday, June 24th, 2013, Allowance for Good launched its second annual Global Philanthropy Summit, which brings together a catalytic group of youth for intensive gatherings to advance personal understanding in and encourage collective action toward global education equity.

Zoe reflects on Day 2 of GPS, during which we heard from Crossroads Advisors, Crown Family Philanthropies, and Google.

Sometimes life decides to hit you over the head with a big foam bat. Today traveling down Wacker drive, I had a small epiphany on a big idea. We’ve been talking a lot about asking “what’s wrong?” and making sure that our services are actually helping and are actually needed. That communication is one of the necessary things for any program to work, whether in Uganda or Louisiana. The idea that there are things people don't need aid with, or that people can actually suffer from the misappropriation of aid is not something I’ve really thought of. I have to admit, and I know its sad, but its not something that's occurred to me before. I don’t like to think that good intentions can go wrong.

When I was in the 6th grade, I organized a coat drive. I knew that the shelter, Connections for the Homeless, needed to increase their amount of winter clothes they could distribute if they wished to provide for the homeless in Evanston. I gathered coats from November till January and gave them to the shelter. This worked because I had close personal connections with the shelter. It doesn’t work nearly as well when the place the donations are going to is a NGO is a developing, third world country. We don’t know what they are doing and can't infer what they need from halfway across the world like we can in our own communities. The biggest idea I’ve gathered, as to working in and with philanthropy, is Communication. Talk about ideas, talk to people, and talk with people. Create a conversation.

Communications is an important part of the world, since more people have a cellphone than access to a toilet. Companies like Google are helping to create ways to open lines of communication and connecting the world. By using their technology and going above and beyond, Google is giving in several key areas both locally and globally. As an internet company Google understands how important communication is in the modern age.

Personally, I really like what Google is doing. They are applying their skills and the skills of their “Googlers” to help the world. They have such an expansive network, and do so much to aid in the creation of communication that I feel they were the real focus today. We have so many opportunities to connect with the world these days, we need to use them. We need to apply our ability to be able to chat with people on another continent to our ideas, and combine it in a way to benefit humanity.