This time two years ago, I was contemplating my public Giving Pledge. I was disappointed in the amount of money I donated to nonprofit organizations throughout the year.
Though December is traditionally known as the season to give and the last chance to get that extra tax write-off before the next year, I knew better. I work with enough nonprofits to know that the need is there year round.
Not long after, I pledged to donate money to at least one nonprofit every month. My first “official” donation for my pledge was in January of 2012. I am proud to say that I have never missed a month of giving. And I can honestly say that my giving has become more intentional through this pledge.
I plan writing more about what I’ve learned in the two years of my Giving Pledge – about myself and my giving – after the holidays.
For now, I am winding down and getting ready to spend the holidays with close friends and family. We have a big trip planned for New Year’s Eve that my kids don’t know about yet. I’m sure I’ll write about that one later too. (And, no it’s not Disney World! It’s much colder. Any guesses?)
This month, I made two smaller donations. While my husband and I decided that we’d have a minimum donation amount this year, I didn’t see myself making it with so much going out of my bank account this month (it always happens at once, doesn’t it?). The neat thing is that my smaller donations will equal to more than my minimum because both were matching donations.
The first donation was to WaterAid America on #GivingTuesday. This one was a bit of a no-brainer for me because a generous donor matched the donations that WaterAid received that day. Plus WaterAid has become a favorite nonprofit of mine. Their goal was to raise $100,000. They ended up raising over $250,000! So, yes, my smaller donation made a difference.
The second donation was initiated by my 8-year-old son, G. His third grade class decided to donate money to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital instead of exchanging gifts during their holiday party. There was no pressure to donate money, but it sounded like the kids really liked the idea. They talked about how any small amount would help. G decided to donate $5 of his own money, and I matched the amount. He was excited to double his amount, and it sounds like I’m not the only parent to do so. I’m not sure what the final tally was on donations, but I have no doubt it will make an impact.