Friday, August 20, 2010

GiVE 365

Next time you go to the Shell for a show (like tomorrow for Rock-n-Romp!), think of me. Ditto on the Indie Memphis Film Festival or the Memphis Music & Heritage Festival at the Center for Southern Folklore. A well dressed woman or a ballerina from Orange Mound may also make you want to pause and think of me. Hatiloo in the park? All me. Those new skate ramps at the local community center? Me.

Ok, me, Warren and 97 other Memphians.

We just awarded $34,650 dollars to eight incredible organizations including the Levitt Shell, Hatiloo Theater, Indie Memphis, Dress for Success, Splinter Youth, New Ballet Ensemble, The Center for Southern Folklore, and Su Casa Family Ministries to carry out a variety of projects that will improve the quality of life in our city and hopefully build community.

The best part? It was so easy! We pooled our money--(at least) $365 each, given $30 per month, which equals $1 per day. The Community Foundation then added $20,000 in matching funds, which brought us to the $34,650 mark.

Then the Community Foundation sent out a call for proposals addressing our chosen theme of "Fostering Community." A few weeks later we received over 100 applications!

A group of thirty of us got together, went through the proposals, and then narrowed the options down to 15. Then each of the 15 organizations came out and gave the full group a 3 minute presentation on their project. Finally, the full group ranked each of the 15 groups in order to determine who would get funding. Amazingly enough, we were able to fully fund 6 projects and partially fund 2 others.

I've applied for grants in the past on behalf of various groups, but I have never been on the grant making side. It was really cool to get together with my peers and work out a system to fund these incredibly deserving groups' projects.

GiVE 365, as we're called, just started a few months ago. The idea is to introduce people in their 20s, 30s & 40s to philanthropy. The more people who get involved, the more money we can give away to fund projects in our very own neighborhoods. If you've ever dreamed of being a philanthropist, now is your chance. Become a member of GiVE 365 and see what $30 a month (or $1 per day) can do.

The official spiel:

"By harnessing the energy, enthusiasm and resources of Memphians, we can build community awareness, leadership and responsibility and establish a pattern of charitable giving with a lasting fund that continues to grow.

Even if you can't give $365 or more now, consider making a gift of any amount."

Join us and let's get busy!


SinisterRobot said...

\m/ Well said!

Lisa Watson said...

Love it! Lets talk more about it!

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