It’s that time of year when your giving dollar goes into action. The term represents your donations to a nonprofit or not-for-profit effort or organization. Some of us use our giving dollar throughout the year and others only during the holiday season.
I get a lot of questions this time of year about giving. Many people don’t know how to direct their donations, especially with so many ways to offer support. Annual giving can mean year-round support for a variety of needs and efforts, while targeted giving can fund a specific event.
Giving can be a monetary donation or given in-kind, which means providing a service or product you or your company offers or produces. Also, giving can be simply raising awareness and spreading the word about the nonprofit. The best thing you can do for your nonprofit is volunteer with them.
Know the organization you’re supporting and why you’re supporting it. Here are eight tips.
- Ask for their brochure
- Ask to tour of their facility
- Ask to attend a board meeting
- Ask if there’s a “needs” list and donate for that list
- Ask to see their money in action (visit a program)
- Ask how the money’s allocated
- Ask about their criteria for volunteers
- Ask if you’re able to target where/how your donation is used (operations, food, children, programs)
Make giving a family and friends affair. Create a collective giving group that allows your tribe to put their giving dollars together and determine where they want to make the greatest impact. Ask your group for suggestions of deserving organizations and discuss why they deserve your donation. Then, select one or two.
Get your business involved. Ask your employees where they think the company’s giving dollar should go. Employees feel their opinions matter when they’re included in the decision making. Company giving efforts include employees donating time, employees collecting goods and donations, and employers helping with and organization’s efforts.
Use your giving dollar with purpose and passion. Fulfill your desire to give with intentional, focused support for the efforts you love.