When I talk with people about what a giving circle is (a group of people who pool their donations), I’m often asked why they would want to donate through a giving circle. Here are four reasons I’ve identified that make a giving circle a powerful way to donate money:
- Leveraging Your Money: Maybe you can only give $25, but if you recruit 9 of your friends, then you just donated $250. If you did that every month, in one year you will have donated $3,000. Do you think that $3,000 is going to make a bigger impact on an organization than $25? You bet! Together we can donate way more money than we can do alone.
- Leverage Your Time: There’s been enough fraud and enough money spent on ineffective programs to know that research is really important, but we’re all busy. Finding time to do the necessary research, or knowing where to look and what to look can be difficult. In a giving circle we share the work of discovering which non-profits are going to make the biggest impact with our hard earned dollars. You contribute when you have time and others contribute when they have time.
- Leverage Your Intellectual Resources: Have you ever noticed that other people know things that you don’t know or have experienced things that you haven’t experienced or maybe even ask questions that you haven’t thought to ask? A giving circle can make a better informed decision because we benefit from the collective wisdom of the group.
- Enjoy Giving More: I speak with people all over the country about their giving circles, and they all tell me the same thing. A giving circle is a great way to feel connected to and fulfilled by your donation. For one, you are sharing the experience of donating with other people who care about the same causes that you do. Second, when you’re involved with your donation dollars by researching, voting, and following up on the impact your dollars have made, you experience a whole other level of satisfaction. Donating money isn’t just a responsibility, it’s a joy!
Why is a giving circle a great way for YOU to donate money?