Friday, October 4, 2013

Girls and Boys Charitable Giving

If you haven’t already seen the new research from the Women’s Philanthropy Institute (WPI) on Charitable Giving by Girls and Boys, do order it.  It is another in the excellent Women Give series.

The report includes ways to raise children to be more charitable and gets to the question: “Is philanthropy taught or caught?”

I was surprised to find that talking to children about charity has a greater impact on children’s giving than role modeling alone, and that it is equally effective regardless of the child’s gender, race and age.

As a co-founder with Martha Taylor of the Women’s Philanthropy Institute, it is extremely heartening to see the research and programmatic results of the Institute moving to the Center on Philanthropy at Indiana University.  WPI is now part of the new Lilly Family School of Philanthropy and the report was made in partnership with the United Nations Foundation.  I highly recommend it and the other Women Give reports as well and particularly congratulate Debra Mesch, Professor and Director of WPI and Andrea Pactor, Associate Director.  They have been the heart and soul of WPI as well as the engine and tracks.  Bravo!

Why Aren't Women Paid as Much as Men?

An article in the October3, 2013 Chronicle of Philanthropy reports that women are rare in the ranks of top-earning nonprofit CEO’s.  Why is that?  Sheryl Sandberg of Lean In would no doubt say that women aren’t demanding more; they aren’t speaking up. 

I think it’s also because women who are in the non-profit sector are there because they care deeply about the cause, be it an international organization such as United Way, a small community organization, or a university.  In the same article, Brian Gallagher, CEO of United Way says, “Research shows women are more inclined to advocate for their beliefs…to make a difference.” I believe it is difficult in most cases to feel that way about a corporate career.  The for-profit sector is quite different.  The product may not be a person’s passion, but it is their paycheck. 

My granddaughter got a very high paying corporate job right out of college.  She likes the job OK, she says but is looking forward to the day when she can work in the non-profit rather than for-profit sector and for something she really cares about.  Of course at a much lower salary. 

When writing our last book, Women and Philanthropy: Boldly Shaping a Better World, I interviewed a top executive with a major corporation.  She was all for the idea of making lots of money in the corporate sector so she could give it away. Not such a bad idea. 

I’m not saying that it’s right women aren’t making top dollars as CEO’s of nonprofits compared to men.  But I do think our gender and our values play a part in the equation.   Ultimately, the solution is for society to recognize the worth of those values.

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

The Power of the Press and Giving Circles

Below is the article about Marsha Wallace and Dining for Women that appeared in this week’s People magazine.  Amazing what this kind of wonderful publicity has done for women’s philanthropy.  First, in 1998 it was Colleen Willoughby and the Washington Women’s Fund that helped launch our Three Generations Circle of Women Givers in 1999.  Then Wendy Hermann Steele’s Impact 100 featured in 2003 and now Marsha Wallace and her Dining for Women.  All of them are giving circles and each time they are featured, giving circles grow by leaps and bounds, proving that women’s philanthropy continues to be a powerful movement and People magazine a powerful force for us.

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Fashionable Philanthropy

I am pleased to have Morgan Gray with us as a guest columnist this month and share what she is doing to tie fashion with philanthropy.  Let's do tie our consumerism with our philanthropy. 

Rescue the World One Purchase at a Time
It's not often fashion, retail and social action occur in the same sentence. For me, they have to. If I can snatch up a great pair of handcrafted, fair trade bracelets or baskets whose profits simultaneously support impoverished families in Colombia, I'm all for doing so.
These days, fashion and philanthropy are at the heart of my daily rituals. I shop consciously; hunting down companies whose beautiful goods they sell or pass on specifically to help those less fortunate. Here are three worthy companies who do this precisely.
I'm addicted to this organization. Their website brings together fair trade, handmade items produced by women from more than 30 countries. When you buy an item, the profits help women living in marginalized communities the world over. Their earnings allow them to care for their families, educate their children and introduce sustainable economic practices into their communities.
The products are artisan in nature, high quality and bear the unmistakable aesthetic of the women who make them. For the shopster who loves crafts, there is everything from jewelry and bags to stationery and housewares.
Looking for a new pair of sunglasses this summer season? Check out Warby Parker. On top of a chic purchase, Warby donates a pair of eyeglasses to someone in need for every pair sold. Warby Parker's selection rivals any luxury brand though prices are reasonable. I have a pair of their new $95 vintage sunglasses, a conversation piece that inadvertently provides me numerous daily opportunities to talk about the great work Warby Parker does.
Warby Parker also partners with non-profits that train poor entrepreneurs to earn money for selling inexpensive glasses. Giving that gives and gives and gives!
One of my favorites, Fashion Delivers collects donations and passes them on to people in need.
Initially founded as a response to Hurricanes Katrina and Rita, the organization has since distributed more than $100 million worth of clothing to the needy. Individuals can donate new clothing as well and potentially receive tax breaks for doing so.
Dare to be giving this summer season in a fashionable way.

Friday, July 5, 2013

Martha Taylor is the International Fundraiser of the Year

We are all so proud of Martha Taylor, my good friend and colleague, shown here receiving the International Fundraiser of the Year award from the Association of Fundraising Professionals in San Diego recently.  Martha has led the way in philanthropy for women as well as for her university, church, and community.

Andrew Watts, President and CEO of AFP said, "Martha has been a trailblazer and pioneer in fundraising all her life.  Our professional--and all of philanthropy, would look very different without her work and inspiration."

This award also marked the twenty fifth anniversary of the Women's Philanthropy Council at the University of Wisconsin Foundation and Martha was the founder of the Council.  Former chair, Christine Lodewick, had this to say to Council members: "Our work together on the Women's Philanthropy Council (WPC) has not only made a powerful difference in advancing giving to higher education but also has served as a catalyst to influence women to be more generous to all causes."

Martha's twenty five years of unstinting service to humanity through her work with women and philanthropy, have resulted in a genuine women's philanthropy movement.  She will be recognized forever as one of the outstanding leaders of this effort which helped women understand their passion, their philanthropic power, and their desire to make the world a better place.

Congratulations Martha.