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Last week we talked about a new mindfulness model for personal giving. One that is designed to help anyone find their specific philanthropic passion. The next step is narrowing down the organizations to support - based around your passion. give

Today we’re here to talk about how to know what to give. It can be a truly helpless feeling, especially if you’ve seen first hand the issues you are wanting to help with. If you’ve seen starving dogs dying on the streets of India, or poverty and domestic violence that is going unnoticed in a country whose government doesn’t stand up for the most vulnerable, it can be excruciating. 

But the only advice I can give at this point, is to just start. Remember that it doesn't matter how much you give, just that you have made the first step of caring - and that you have passion for change. There's unfortunately never been any magic dollar number or hours of volunteer work that has been proven to make more of a difference than others. So the most important thing is to just START.

IMG 1168[This blog talks about digging deep to find our personal cause, choosing a charity, and reminds us that where we shop matters too.]

Last week we talked about the fact that one person can make a big difference in this wild world of ours. Today we are here to talk about how one can do so.

As a person who has various passions and a lot of heart and soul, I know how challenging it can be to just choose one charity. One charity! Out of all the amazing work that’s being done out there?! Seems impossible.

It’s not. But it requires some work, self-awareness, and mindfulness.

Here is my brand new, broken down mindfulness model of how to choose a charity.

starfishThe world today can be overwhelming at times, especially to one with a so-called "bleeding heart". There are wars and famines, droughts and oppression. But there's also kindness and love, courage and wisdom.

All over the world there are people working to make a difference. At FineLine, we see it in our daily lives. And we know there are a lot of donors out there who would like to know how to support these people to achieve their missions.

So today starts a three part series on how to incorporate philanthropy in your daily life.

solicitor training 300x200What makes a good non-profit organization solicitor? What are the roles of a solicitor? NOTE: When we say solicitor here, we  mean an employee of the organization who advocates for and takes in donations. 

One of the most important roles of a solicitor is being the authenticator. This encompasses a passion for the cause and a comprehensive knowledge of the organization.

sscyAs you may know, pulling the trigger to finally make a charitable donation, especially when it is a large sum of money, can be scary and exhilarating all at once. After spending months or years saving up, you are proud with your decision to give to those less fortunate. You have taken the time to do your due diligence and have researched charities that align with your interests and values. You are sharing your wealth with a cause near and dear to your heart - and that is cause for celebration.

All too often, donors feel as though charities/non-profit organizations fail to properly acknowledge them or that they pester them too often. It is always a delightful surprise when you hear about a donor that has had an exceptionally positive experience and we want to highlight that here. 

We interviewed Kim Enright, the owner of multiple Boston Pizza locations in Canada, about a recent donor experience to the SSCY Centre that she enjoyed.

giveWhen you finally make the decision to donate to charity, you want to give effectively. No person wants to give away their hard earned money, only to be hoodwinked by a fake organization, feel as though your organization isn’t the most effective, or end up donating to a program/project you regret.

So in order to make sure your money ends up where you want it, here are four steps to help you become a more effective donor:

1. Know your rights.

“Know my rights? What does that mean?”

Specifically, I am referring to the Donor Bill of Rights. There are certain things that donors are entitled to from non-profits. For example, you have every right to information about where their money is going. Familiarize yourself with the Donor Bill of Rights so that when it comes time to look at charities, you are a more educated donor.

summerThe magical summer months are fast approaching. Eight weeks of pure bliss. Children are out of school, the weather is warm, and the days are wonderfully long. Families celebrate this fun time by going to the beach, taking road trips throughout the country, hanging out in the park, spending weekends at the family cottage, hosting BBQs, and more!

But, while you soak up the sun and enjoy this summer, how can you give back to great causes?

Here are a few ideas!

happy group of friends making 13618094You always hear people say, “Giving is good!” People talk about how great giving is, not just for the recipients, but the donors themselves. Why is this? What actually makes giving good for the giver?

I’m here to share with you a few concrete ways in which giving benefits us, the donors!

1. It makes us feel happy.

If you’ve given money to charity before - donated old clothes to a shelter, or volunteered with an organization - you’ve probably felt warm and fuzzy. Why is this?

It’s that wonderful time of year. The flowers are blooming, the sun is shining, and the air is fresh. It’s spring!

Which also means spring cleaning. North American families have an annual tradition of cleaning their homes, and purging unnecessary belongings. From clothing to kitchenware to books, each year individuals purge these items they’ve collected over time that they no longer need in order for a fresh spring start.

But as you sift through your belongings, identifying what will stay and what will go, where do this discarded items go? Throwing perfectly good items in the trash is a shame! There are countless ways to part with your unwanted goods so that they can benefit others.

Here are four different ways to lighten your load and make a difference while you do it!

Every organization has a mission statement, but what exactly does it mean? Is it similar to a business plan, a vision statement, or a list of goals?

At its core, a mission statement outlines why the organization exists and why it does what it does. It is a one sentence statement describing the motivation that determines the non-profits priorities and actions. A good mission statement is short, concise and informative.

Mission statements and vision statements are often confused or grouped together.

A mission statement describes how you will achieve your overarching goal, whereas a vision statement describes that specified end goal. A mission statement focuses on the present, defining the purpose and primary objectives of the organization, but a vision statement focuses on the future, discussing both the goals and values of the organization.

In a nutshell, a mission statement answers the question, “What do we do and what makes us unique?” while a vision statement answers the question, “Where do we aspire to be?”

Powering the world to do well by doing good.