Focus Your Giving in 2013

Today I got to speak with Elizabeth Share—always something I enjoy tremendously because of her wisdom and sincerity. She shared her expertise for our First Wednesday Webinar and I feel so very fortunate to know her as a friend and a member of the Catalytic Women advisory board. Elizabeth has been helping donors and nonprofits increase the impact of their work in communities worldwide for over 25 years. As founder of Wise Giving, she helps individuals and private foundations create focus and impact around their giving. Her private clients include the Isabel Allende Foundation, Khaled Hosseini Foundation, Chez Panisse Foundation, Grace Family Foundation, CompassPoint, and Nepalese Youth Foundation.

The topic of our webinar today was right up her alley: Creating focus for your giving, at year-end and in the year ahead. It sounds so simple, but we all know it isn’t. Elizabeth offered her expertise on a few questions with which many of us struggle:

  • With so many requests, what’s the best way to focus my gifts to the issues I care about most?
  • How can I be kind in saying “no” to the organizations that don’t match my interests (or to the friends who ask!)?
  • Is it OK to decide to make some gifts in support of others’ interests, even if they’re not my own?

End of year requests for donations can feel overwhelming. Each organization articulates such a compelling need—yet our resources are limited and it can be hard to decide which are most worthy of our financial support.

Elizabeth spoke so eloquently about how we can get in touch with values that drive our giving. She also gave a framework for considering the long term impact of what we give—over years, it can be a lot. Benefit from her resources and best practices from Wise Giving, Inspired Legacies and the Catalytic Women members-only library. She led a very practical discussion on how to focus your giving to achieve maximum impact and personal satisfaction.

If you’re looking for a way to feel confident that your charitable contributions achieve the change you want to see in the world, take a look at Elizabeth’s presentation.

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