Tuesday, November 14, 2017

National Philanthropy Day: Advancing the Greater Good

Our lives are defined by community. After all, our successes, achievements, challenges and opportunities are often determined by others in our lives. As the saying goes, no person is an island, and very few of us can claim that we are "self-made" or found success all on our own. Almost always there has been someone—or many "someone’s"—who have contributed to our accomplishments.

That’s why it’s so hard to look away when someone is in need. That’s why we see problems and want to step up. Being in a community demands that we help because not only is it the right thing to do, but also because it’s an intrinsic part of us. We need to help, however we can.

Like all of you, I’ve always wanted to help others and contribute to the greater good.  I feel I have been blessed in my life and want to provide opportunities for others.  I decided the best way for me to do this was by taking my management and financial skills and experience and supporting those that are on the front lines. That’s why I’m excited to be leading AFP—doing my part in the most effective way possible.

To me, that’s what we’re celebrating on National Philanthropy Day: each of us, doing our part for the greater good and supporting the communities that are so integral to our lives. And we’re not doing our work in a vacuum either. Philanthropy brings us together and unites us, so our collective impact is greater than anything we could do on our own.

Whatever issue you’re dedicated to—among the millions of causes that our nonprofit sectors represent around the world—and whatever role you play—fundraiser, donor, volunteer, corporate or foundation funder, nonprofit employee—let me simply say: Thank you!

Thank you for everything you do to support the greater good. Thank you for not turning away from people in need. Thank you for coming together through philanthropy and charities, and dedicating yourself to improving communities around the world.

There will be always be issues to address and causes to support, but we have already made an indelible impact on our world through philanthropy. On National Philanthropy Day, let’s remember and celebrate what we’ve accomplished—together—and recommit ourselves to doing our part to advance the greater good.