I’M LATINA & PHILANTHROPY IS IMPORTANT TO ME.
I don’t have a lot of money. But, with the money that I do have, I try to make a point to give back where I can. After Hurricane Sandy I donated to the Red Cross, for example. Before the end of the year I want to donate to my public radio station. I donate occasionally to my alma mater when they call asking for money and I’m going to donate to an animal organization in the name of the deceased mother of a friend of mine.
I’m not talking huge donations here, but $20 will do, the point is that you’re participating in promoting the things that you think are important. Recent presidential elections have highlighted the important role that small donors can play, but the more important transaction that occurs when you make a donation to an organization you support is that you feel ownership in it.
I’m donating to a public radio station that includes a Latino DJ as part of its standard programming, for example. This is important to me because it means that, in my own way, I’m promoting an organization that promotes ideas that I like — that Latinos should be hired for their professional skills not because the station wants to pander to this audience, for example. I donated to the Red Cross because I know that, having lived through earthquakes and wildfires, when that aid comes it’s very important.
It doesn’t matter which organization you donate to, the important thing is that you do it, that you take ownership of something that you think is important and encourage your friends and family to do the same.
About 70% of Latino families donate to charity every year, specifically to the Catholic Church, education, job training, youth and disaster organizations.
But it doesn’t have to just be money, either. You can volunteer if that’s something that’s easier for you to do, the result is the same: you’re taking ownership of something that matters to you. Because, I hate to break it to you, if you don’t take ownership of your public radio station, they are not going to magically want to provide you with programming that is relevant to you. If you do not take an active role in the institutions that matter to you, they really don’t have a reason to serve your needs.
If you would like suggestions on how to donate, or where to donate, let me know on Twitter @SaraChicaD and perhaps we can get a discussion going. Happy holidays and happy philanthropy!
Copyright 2012 Sara Inés Calderón