A list of resources from around the Web about philanthropy as selected by researchers and editors of The New York Times.
- Independent Sector
- A "leadership forum" for foundations and charities.
- National Committee for Responsive Philanthropy
- A watchog for the sector.
- National Center for Charitable Statistics
- Rockefeller Foundation
- BBB Wise Giving Alliance
- Information for donors.
- Files on Individual Charities. (give.org)
- Charity Navigator
- An "independent evaluator" of charities.
- Economic Research Institute
- An alternative source for financial data.
- Internal Revenue Service
- The official list of charities that qualify for tax-deductible contributions.
- Council on Foundations
- The main membership group for foundations.
- The Foundation Center
- Connecting nonprofits and grantmakers.
- A database of nonprofit filings.
- Case Foundation
- Some innovative ideas on the sector from Steve and Jean Case.
- Social Edge
- The Skoll Foundation's effort to connect social entrepreneurs and philanthropists.
- Omidyar Network
- A social network on charity from E-Bay's founder.
- Charity Governance
- By a non-profit tax lawyer.
- Philanthropy Journal
- Beyond Philanthropy
- Geneva Global, a philanthropic advisory firm, on international giving.
- The Charity Industry Observer
- The Nonprofiteer
- Aimed at nonprofit professionals.
- Foundation Growth and Giving Estimates, 2008 Edition
- Foundation Center, May 2008
- Key Facts on Family Foundations, 2008 Edition
- Foundation Center, March 2008
- Foundation Giving Trends, 2008 Edition
- Foundation Center, Feb 28, 2008
- What Drives Foundation Expenses and Compensation? Results of a Three-Year Study
- The Urban Institute, Foundation Center and GuideStar, February 2008
Hearts in motion
A CHINESE millionaire tried to give $300 (and lunch) to homeless men and women in New York last week. This didn’t sit well with the nonprofit New York City Rescue Mission. The Rescue Mission offered to help with lunch, but wouldn’t cooperate in handing out cash. So midway through a meal of sesame-crusted tuna and filet of beef, some 200 homeless people discovered that they would not be getting money. Instead, the Rescue Mission would accept $90,000 on their behalf. You can imagine the anger and humiliation.
The millionaire, a recycling tycoon named Chen Guangbiao, wanted to set an example of generosity in the world’s financial capital. To announce the $300 giveaway, he’d taken out a full-page advertisement in The New York Times.
The executive director of Rescue Mission said he was worried that people might spend the handout on drugs or alcohol. This pessimism (and paternalism) is common and understandable. But evidence from other countries suggests we should be more optimistic.
WASHINGTON — BY all outward indications, the U.S. Navy Veterans Association was a leader in the charitable community. Founded in 2002 to provide support to Navy veterans in need, the charity recorded astonishing financial success. In its first eight years, it raised around $100 million in charitable contributions, almost all of it through a direct marketing campaign. The organization, headed by Jack L. Nimitz, boasted of 41 state chapters and some 66,000 members.
This would be a great story of charitable success, except for the fact that virtually everything about the association turned out to be false: no state chapters, no members, no leader with the name redolent of naval history. Instead, there was one guy: a man calling himself Bobby Thompson who worked from a duplex across the street from the Cuesta-Rey cigar factory in the Ybor City neighborhood of Tampa.
Philanthropy comes from a combination of two words in Ancient Greek — philos (loving) + anthropos (human being) or "love of humanity". Charity comes from the Latin word "caritas" which means an "unlimited loving kindness of all others". One of Christianity's core commandments also says "Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself". So philanthropy and charity are about helping others and reducing inequity and suffering while in the process becoming caring individuals.
Dispite the all-encompassing crookedness and greed we believe in the good triumphing over evil.
Ethicists & Charity
These are highly personal decisions, often influenced by our financial circumstances, life experiences or personal connections to a particular cause. But if you were to listen to a handful of ethicists and charity experts make their case, as I did this week, you might be swayed to send more of your money to people in distant lands. They argue that if giving is about pure altruism, individuals would be sending a greater share of their charitable dollars abroad; even small dollar amounts can have powerful results for people living in extreme poverty.
“If you are truly driven by altruism, then you don’t care about the color of the person’s skin you are helping or the passport they carry,” said Dean Karlan, an economics professor at Yale University and founder of Innovations for Poverty Action, which uses randomized trials to test what social policies work. “If it is truly about altruism, you care about the impact you make in their lives, period. Money is movable.
India's rich begin warming up to charity, but in their own way
The wealthy Indians shelled out 3.1% of their total income on charitable donations in 2011, compared to 2.3% in 2010
Despite a year-on-year rise, the figure is low in comparison to many other countries. The affluent people in the US give as much as 9.1% of their income in donations.
According to non-profit organization Smile Foundation India Confounder & Executive Trustee Santanu Mishra, many of the rich Indians have off late started thinking about charity and giving back to the society, though in a small way.
Traditionally, philanthropic activities in India have included building religious places and funding universities.