I was asked once, “Why do you go to so much trouble to give your money away? Why do you give it away at all? Why not buy an island and spend your days in a hammock drinking something cold out of a tall glass with a little paper umbrella?”
The answer is that in spite of all the money and success in my life, I’m still Carrie. I’m the low-income, high-potential kid I’ve seen on my site visits to schools over the years. I’m the one who has made mistakes, taken some wrong turns, and needed a hand up once in a while. I’m the one who was rescued time and again by a loving parent, a dedicated teacher, a bible study leader, a compassionate boss, or someone else who believed in me, encouraged me, and gave me a chance when I needed it.
Most of all, my husband John has encouraged, supported, and guided me in refining my philosophy of giving and in everything else in my life. We make a perfect team on the foundation: I’m the accelerator and he’s the brake. I thrive by working tirelessly for people I’ll never meet because I know there are untold numbers of starfish out there who need my support and involvement.
Big gifts from big donors get the media’s attention, but at the end of the day, it’s the thousands of small donations of money, time, love, encouragement, and other support that go further and do more. For every dollar that comes from a big donor, the average American household gives $5.
When you donate to a project or a program you believe in – schools, education, abused children, animals, your church, or a social cause– your passion for the work is just as important as the financial gift. It comes down to a combination of giving with the head and with the heart.
The joy and love of sharing what we have connects all givers everywhere.
Like what you hear? Pick up a copy of Every Gift Matters: How Your Passion Can Change the World, now available at Amazon.