Giving Back Resources & Thoughts for 2016

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Image via Huffington Post “12 Beautiful Quotes To Inspire You In 2016

As the second year of volunteering our time comes to a close, I wanted to post a few articles, ideas and resources I’ve come across lately.

First, there is an old nonprofit saying “act locally, give globally,” which I’ve taken a liking to. If you dig around online, you’ll find a lot of reinforcement for this principle. For example:

…if you subscribe to the belief that all lives are created equally—and your giving is aimed at saving human lives or reducing suffering—your donations will almost always yield greater returns when given (to reputable organizations) internationally. Some philosophers argue that having money to spend on nonessentials and not putting it toward saving a preventable human death, no matter how far away, is morally equivalent to seeing a life you can save in front of you and not intervening.

So volunteering your time locally to charities and causes you support is a great way to give back and donating globally will make a big difference (and believe me, I’m not against donating to domestic causes – there are some awesome ones :)). Obviously, we’ve been doing a lot of volunteering around Madison and for the holidays this year, in line with the above, I bought a lot of charity gifts from care and Heifer International. Things like “a flock of chicks” and “a water tap in school” go a long way. Also, even a small thing like getting greeting cards from UNICEF are both quality cards and easy way to support their work saving children around the world.

Next up, a few great articles worth checking out any time of the year:

Also, this article I put together a year ago for the Cooperative Trust is still informative for those of you looking to set up a volunteer event of your own:

Lastly, I’ll leave you with this comprehensive volunteering and donation wish list from the United Way of Dane County via the Isthmus. It’s geared towards the holidays, but has a ton of good ideas to make a difference locally in 2016.

Thanks for reading, volunteering and your support in 2015. One of the most rewarding parts of this year are meeting new people, bonding with like-minded people at events, the rewarding work, and to be so struck by some local nonprofit organizations, that I go back on my own or with my family to volunteer separately.

Looking forward to another year of giving back in 2016!

PS- any credit union people reading this might enjoy an article I did for CUinsight last month (again, the message of it is relevant all year): The credit union guide to making impactful donations this holiday season

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