In a recent post at Michael Simmons – Young Entrepreneur Journey: To Give or Not to Give wrote:
Living in the big city, I’m asked for money about 10 times a day. I probably give money about 2 out of the 10 times depending on how much money I have, how bad I feel, and how convinced I am. When I don’t give money, I always feel a little bit bad.
It’s a shame that con artists can affect our generosity. Giving is a decision we make in our own hearts.
As an excercise in abundance for one month I gave to anyone who asked, no matter how apparently worthy or unworthy they were. That took effort to overcome my Drug and Alcohol intervention training – never give money to a derelict alcoholic as they could use it to buy the drink that kills them. Luckily (!?) no derelicts asked me that month.
I have reduced casual giving to pan-handlers, they get loose change if I have it. Instead I give in a more structured way. I sponsor a child; tithe a percentage of my income; and give sacrificially to causes – that means I give enough that it hurts, not just what is comfortable.
The lesson is to make a difference with my gifts. I don’t think I’ve learned it yet. And I’m not talking about getting recognition for those gifts — many are anonymous. A casual $2 in the Red Cross appeal makes a difference if enough people do it. $100 in one go to a local Meals on Wheels has a more focused result. Making a $100,000 endowment for community outreach and leadership training in disadvantaged areas would make a huge difference in the right hands.