January 1, 2010, Newsletter Issue #158: Donor Driven: Doing Individual Due Diligence

Tip of the Week

When you contemplate making a major or planned gift to your pet charity, what else can you do to ensure that your investment in a charity’s future is received with a sense of responsibility and respect? Remember you give to the organization and not the individual who asks you, therefore, if the charity has made the financial grade, there are other strategies you might consider that will unearth how your entrusted assets will be used to advance the agency and its mission! Find your “honest broker”. Your honest broker is the one individual who looks out for your philanthropic interests now and in the future. A role captured by development expert, David R. Dunlop, the “honest broker” ensures that the charity’s needs and the donor’s passions are blended. The honest broker looks out for the donor’s interests; understands the donor’s financial position and assets and protects the donor’s philanthropic dreams. Make a site visit; not a social call. While you may attend numerous charity fund raisers where staff don their party persona; visiting the charity’s front lines will tell you much more about what is really happening beyond the charity’s image. Get Vested. Givers make good board members and even better major benefactors. If your commitment to a hospital is strong; why join the Auxiliary board or the board of directors. If illiteracy overwhelms you, become a tutor. If the art world makes you see life as beautiful, become a docent.Evaluating the charity on your own terms will create your plan for giving your time, your talents and your time!

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