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Posted by on Oct 28, 2020 in Nonprofit, Work | 0 comments

Why Give? Kahlil Gibran on Generosity

Why Give? Kahlil Gibran on Generosity

Crammed in my drawer next to my bed are years of arts and crafts, given to me with almost ecstatic anticipation by my four daughters over the years. A Beauty and the Beast coloring page; a blue, yellow, and green woven bracelet; a pink and yellow glazed pot, just perfect for a few coins. In each instance, my daughters worked, wrapped, and then gave gifts to their daddy out of a freedom, delight, and self-forgetfulness.  Like my daughters, Americans are generous. Yet Americans aren’t exactly joyful. Today 3 of 5 Americans report being lonely and 1 in 6 struggle with mental illness. During the pandemic, as we see philanthropic needs mount, some are skeptical that generosity will really help the painful world we live in. Many are asking a basic question about their money: can my giving really make an impact on problems this big and far-reaching?  Motives for giving have shifted even in the past couple of decades. Fred Smith, president of the Gathering, a group of Christian philanthropists, has pointed out that a sophisticated industry has emerged...

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Posted by on Dec 22, 2017 in Nonprofit, Work | 0 comments

The Case for Giving to Denver Institute

The Case for Giving to Denver Institute

  Where does Denver Institute fit into the broader nonprofit community? Or more specifically, why financially support Denver Institute in your own giving portfolio? All executive directors of nonprofits think about year-end giving this time of year, and I’m no different. Occasionally, it can be helpful when they make their own case for support and explain where they fit into a broader nonprofit ecosystem. Most nonprofits exist to pick up the broken pieces of society. Addiction, homelessness, lack of opportunity – take your pick. When society falls apart, the nonprofit community plays a critical role in serving the poor, widow, orphan and sojourner. This is a good, biblical reason to financially support any one of a number of organizations serving the underserved. But occasionally we must ask, how did society get here in the first place? What about our leaders, our institutions, and our economy is so broken that it left out such a large percentage of our neighbors? What are the beliefs, values, and norms that have shaped...

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Posted by on Nov 7, 2016 in Economy, Nonprofit, Work | 1 comment

The “Culture Hole” in Our Annual Giving

The “Culture Hole” in Our Annual Giving

  So many charities, so many choices. This time of year, year-end fundraising appeals pour into our mailboxes. How are we to decide between the many worthy nonprofit causes that are asking for financial support? If you’re anything like Kelly (my wife) and me, you have to make this choice carefully. We’ve set aside a certain amount each year in our charitable giving budget, and we want our donor dollars to make an impact. For us, there are two giving categories that won’t budge anytime soon: the local church and the poor. We believe we have both a duty and a joyful opportunity to support our local church (Littleton Christian Church) as it proclaims the gospel to our community and nonprofits like HOPE International that are serving the poor and marginalized throughout the world. I believe these two categories should be universal priorities for Christians. But I think many Christians have often overlooked a third category for charitable giving: culture. Actually, I believe the culture category is necessary considering...

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