The online gifts have been rolling in steadily over the last few days as people of Michiana have taken time this holiday season to remember the valuable non-profit organizations in our community. We're on the home stretch for 2007 but it's not too late to get in your tax deductible gift for this year. Since you can give online to any of 270 local agencies, it would only take the next three minutes for you to end 2007 with a lasting act of generosity that will help others.
Stephen J. Dubner, author of the best-selling book Freakonomics, asked his blog readers on the New York Times website about their charitiable giving habits in anticipation of the holiday giving season. The diverse, thought-provoking responses he received created an interesting profile on how people view philanthropy today, with people of different countries, incomes, political views, and religious views all weighing in on why (or why not) they support certain organizations. Certainly noticable within the responses is a theme of growing skepticism toward non-profits that this new Harris poll echoes.
You don't have to be skeptical if you do your homework before giving. Our Online Holiday Giving Guide can help you select a charity that will use your gift to its fullest potential.
Back in November the media was reporting food shortages in food banks across the nation. This week the issue got some new attention locally as the South Bend Tribune as well as WSBT ran stories on donation shortages for local charities, particularly food donations. This Tribune article and this WSBT story both highlight the difficulties that some local charities are having in helping families for the holiday.
There may be more specific reasons behind the food shortages. This article from the Foundation Center talks about a sharp decrease in federally distributed farm surpluses and tighter inventory control as factors that may also be contributing to the rise in demand.
Some thoughts to think about as you plan your holiday giving.
This Saturday is WSBT's 22 Ways of Giving LIVE event from 6AM to noon at the Gurley-Leep Showroom on the corner of Grape and Douglas in Mishawaka. Come out and enjoy Christmas music by local groups, free coffee, free pastries, and support 22 agencies that do very important work in the Michiana area. You'll want to visit this page to see what items you should bring to donate. You can also sign up to volunteer or give financially at the event to help your favorite agency.
Most of the 22 agencies participating collaborate with us on our website, which means that you can support them right now by giving online through this page.
The holiday season is always a big time for charitiable giving, and we want to help you support your favorite charities in the Michiana area as the end of the year approaches. Whether you live in Mishawaka, South Bend, Granger, Niles, Goshen, Elkhart, LaPorte, Berrien Springs, St. Joseph, or somewhere in between, we can help you find a local charity that is making a difference in your community and then show you how to support them online. Check out our Online Holiday Giving Guide for information on selecting a charity, making a donation, and how to follow up on your donation.
You can donate to any of 270 local Michiana agencies right here by going to our Donate Online page. Once you select a charity and fill in the information, you will be taken to a secure online payment site called Paypal that will guide you through the rest of the process.