The Giving Guide:
5 Tips for Doing Good This Season
The holidays are a time of wonder, celebration, and generosity. The spirit of giving is especially alive this time of year, but giving can be tricky. How can you make sure your giving is effective? Here are some tips to get you started.
Decide what you
want to achieve
Know what you want to accomplish before you give. There are many noble causes and it helps to start by aligning your passions and goals with a focus. Are you looking to reduce poverty, assist victims of disaster, improve the quality of education, reduce hunger, advance conservation efforts? It’s important to set clear goals and get specific. Try to outline a focus area and region, then work with clear goals in mind.
Look for organizations whose values match yours. You’ll want to support charities with clear goals, strong leadership, and proven success. Here are a few questions to help you dig in and find the best match for your goals. Have a look at some nonprofits we love.
Mission and Structure
- What is the nonprofit’s strategy and mission? Does the organization share your values?
- How has the organization defined the problem it’s trying to solve?
- How do the organization’s goals align with its programs? Can you see how the programs pave the way to long term success?
- What are the organization’s proven outcomes?
- Does the organization have support from external experts?
- Does it have a clear definition of success? How is that measured?
- How does the organization use data to improve its effectiveness?
Giving is so much more than just monetary donations. You can use your time, skills, and passions to impact those around you during the holiday season and beyond. Have a look at some of our simple service ideas below.
The holidays remind us to be generous and compassionate, but need is not seasonal—we can chip away at poverty every day. We hope your giving experiences this year inspire inspire you to do good all year round.
NONPROFITS WE LOVE
The following nonprofits represent a sampling of the many we know and love. The list is meant to spark your interest, get you digging for more, and inspire your own research. The following organizations were showcased because they align with our focus areas, share the same overarching goal of poverty alleviation, and have proven very effective in their work.
Riders for Health
An award-winning social enterprise, Riders for Health improves access to healthcare for more than 21 million people living in rural areas by strengthening “last mile” delivery systems.visit site ->
Living Goods empowers women to deliver training and health supplies to those living in poverty, simultaneously reducing child mortality rates and boosting sustainable livelihoods.visit site ->
D-Rev develops innovative, user-centric medical solutions that improve mobility and newborn health for people living on less than $4 a day.visit site ->
Jacaranda Health works to make pregnancy and childbirth safer for women and newborns by transforming maternity care in East Africa.visit site ->
Barefoot College empowers women who have not received formal education to bring renewable energy and entrepreneurial activities to their communities.visit site ->
One of the largest nonprofits in India with a proven track record of success, Pratham focuses on high-quality, low-cost, and replicable interventions that address gaps in the education system.visit site ->
SERES focuses on youth leadership development in Guatemala and El Salvador, equipping young people with the skills needed to create positive social change.visit site ->
Khan Academy provides free, online learning for anyone, anywhere with a wide range of online tutorials that enable learners to study at their own pace in and outside of the classroom.visit site ->
One Acre Fund
One Acre Fund supplies rural, smallholder farmers with the financing and training needed to increase their harvest’s yield and create a sustainable pathway out of poverty.visit site ->
Build Change designs disaster-resistant homes and schools in emerging nations and trains local residents in building techniques that afford them greater control over their long-term safety and economic security.visit site ->
Proximity Designs is an award-winning, social enterprise based in Myanmar that designs and delivers affordable, income-boosting products and services that are available in over 10,000 rural villages.visit site ->
Africa & Latin America
Root Capital is a nonprofit social investment fund that grows rural prosperity in poor, environmentally vulnerable places by lending capital, delivering financial training, and strengthening market connections for small and growing agricultural businesses.visit site ->
SIMPLE WAYS FOR YOU AND YOURS TO DO GOOD
GlobalGiving or DonorsChoose gift certificates are a great way to empower others to support causes they care about. Have a night of giving to celebrate your support of others by bringing your family together to find projects they are passionate about and invest in solutions. http:www.donorschoose.org or https://www.globalgiving.org/gifts/
Sit with your kids and craft homemade cards for children who are ill and unable to spend the holidays in the comfort of their own home. Deliver the cards to your local children’s hospital along with some hugs.
Offer to decorate an elderly neighbor’s house with lights. Surprise them with a magical display.
Forget spring cleaning, try winter cleaning! Go through your things and donate gently used clothes, books, and other items to your local shelter.
Stop into your local senior center to spread some cheer. Take along a board game and learn one stranger’s story.
The holidays remind us to be generous and compassionate, but need is not seasonal—we can chip away at poverty every day. We hope your giving experience this year inspires you to do good all year round.