What do you picture when you think of a philanthropist.
Is it someone who
- Builds wings of hospitals.
- Flies into a disaster area with a one million dollar donation.
- Signs the Giving Pledge to give away half of their wealth.
- Attends luncheons and write large checks.
I used to feel that way, too, and based on that picture, I knew I wasn’t a philanthropist and wasn’t going to be one anytime soon.
Philanthropy has NOTHING to do with how much you donate.
You can donate $5 and be a philanthropist.
You can donate $1 million and NOT be a philanthropist.
A philanthropist is someone who
- Has a picture of how the world should be.
- Donates with the intention of of bringing that picture to life.
- Takes the necessary steps to evaluate if a particular donation will foster that vision.
Philanthropists know that giving money is serious business. Giving circle members are philanthropists, because they
- Have a vision of what will improve their community.
- Pool their donations with others so that they’ll make an even greater impact on the problem and in bringing their vision to life.
- Ensures that the donation is evaluated and determined to be one that is likely to further their vision.
I take my hat off to the thousands of the giving circle members across the country treating their donations like a big deal and showing us what it means to be a philanthropist.