National Philanthropy Day

By MaryAnn

Definition of PHILANTHROPY

: goodwill to fellowmen; especially : active effort to promote human welfare
a : a philanthropic act or gift b : an organization distributing or supported by philanthropic funds


      The family’s


    made it possible to build the public library.

For most of my life, I have collected money for other people.

As a child, I sold Girl Scout cookies at 50 cents per box. I quit after I got the silver pin for selling 100 boxes. Of course, my mother also discouraged my ever doing that activity again, since she had to drive me all over Macon County to deliver–one box here, one box there.

For several years, I participated in Trick-or-Treat for UNICEF, which occured, of course, on Halloween, but we asked for coins, not candy. How hard was that when all of my friends were getting candy?

My first paying job, other than babysitting, was working at the old downtown Franklin Public Library when I was about 13. I got paid out of overdue fines, if there were any. What a great incentive for collecting money!

As an adult, I have worked in the nonprofit arena for nearly 30 years. Asking for money has never bothered me, probably because I spent so much of my childhood doing just that.

Whether it’s 50 cents for a box of cookies, or $50,000 for a grant application, it’s really just a matter of a bunch of extra zeros.

Which brings me to the real topic here: National Philanthropy Day. This event, mainly sponsored by the Association of Fundraising Professionals, occurs each November. This year, November 15, 2010 marks the 50th anniversary of AFP, and the 25th anniversary of the special day itself.

According to the AFP website, National Philathropy Day is celebrated “because of the extraordinary impact of the charitable sector and the increasing role it plays in our societies and countries around the world. ”

On the website, you will find current data on fundraising, tips on giving so that your contribution makes an impact, ideas for fundraisers in the current economy, and more.

And just one final point about philanthropy:

Albert Einstein is quoted as saying, “It is every man’s obligation to put back into the world at least the equivalent of what he takes out of it.”


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