One of our partners, Brooke Ramstad, sent me a link recently for a new book titled, Delusional Altruism. I immediately wanted to check it out. It confirmed the premise of what Idaho Partners for Good is doing to help educate philanthropists. Let's stop and define what a philanthropist really is – anyone who loves humanity! So, that is pretty much all of us!
Letʻs stop and define what a philanthropist really is–anyone who loves humanity!
The basic premise is about how we give, not just how much. It addresses the common errors and myths that are prevalent in our philanthropic sector. Dan Pallota also writes and speaks about how we got to a place where most people have a basic misunderstanding of the nonprofit sector, how it works, and the limiting factors that keep us from truly solving our most complex human and environmental challenges.
Often, when I explain what Idaho Partners for Good is, the person I am speaking with says a statement akin to; "nonprofits donʻt know how to manage their donations;" "my money doesnʻt end up going to the purpose I want to help;" "the CEO shouldnʻt be getting a six-figure salary;" etc. These are common sentiments that are tied to beliefs and biases about how nonprofits should use their funding.
To help address these common and sometimes harmful biases we need to educate ourselves about how to make the most impact with our time, talent, and treasure. This is what Idaho Partners for Good is focused on and we invite you to join us. Here is how to begin the journey toward more strategic impact:
Be INTENTIONAL by investigating why you give: When it comes to charitable giving, most donʻt realize they give from a specific and definitive biased perspective. These beliefs (biases) deserve our attention and reflection. You can be intentional by asking these questions, "What do I really care about solving?” “Why do I give to specific organizations and not others?" and "What expectations do I have about how money I give to nonprofits will be used and how do they hold back the organizations to which I give?" If you need help creating your giving strategy, let us help.
Get PROXIMATE to the causes you support: Another common, albeit untrue, bias regarding nonprofits is around ʻoverheadʻ. Instead of setting an arbitrary percentage on how much should go toward administrative costs, take a step toward getting to know the nonprofits that address the cause(s) you care about. Funding that is funneled toward marketing, salaries, fund development, facilities, technology, and other operational costs is often viewed negatively. However, these are all legitimate costs of operation! We need a new narrative, one that is informed by being proximate to the solutions and those who provide them.
Help us DOUBLE our efforts: When a solution is found to a pressing problem, it deserves to be duplicated over and over. Idaho Partner for Good’s organizational effectiveness model helps Idaho's nonprofits gain strength and a position of sustainability. This works and we need to scale it, which requires YOU and those you know. All it takes is the right connection at the right time. You might be that connection! Come join us at the next Coffee Chat to learn more.