Six basics of wise giving:
1. Know your goal
When thinking about child poverty and how to reduce its effects, think about why you want this. You can stay motivated by understanding how you deeply feel about the goal.
You also need to identify what limits your aspirations. The following list poses some things to consider while developing your goal.
- What kind of goal would fit with the ‘brand’ and values of you, your business or organisation? These may include things like being seen to be forward thinking, innovative or caring about local communities, or a particular sector such as sport and fitness.
- To what extent should your stakeholders (including employees) be involved in selecting the goal and/or co-contributing to, or participating in, delivering the services or activities?
- Do you want to focus on local, national (or international) impacts on children?
- What is the time frame (long, medium or short term) in which you expect to make a difference?
- What is the scale (amount and duration) of your planned giving? Is it likely to achieve your desired impact? If not, then consider increasing your giving, or reducing your focus - be realistic about your expectations and time frames.
- How does your proposed goal and associated scale of investment fit with your (or your organisation’s) resource base? Is it sustainable for the coming years?
- What is your appetite for risk in investment outcomes?
- What level of recognition for the investment or sponsorship is expected? For example, level of profile for your business or donor; whether donations need to be linked to marketing, or anonymity.
- What are your organisation’s internal processes to get agreement on the goal?
Keep a record of your goal. Agree it with other people who are ‘giving’ with you, whether a partner, your family, other directors on a board or a trust, the management team of your business, or your employees.
After analysing the other five basics, you may choose to adjust the goal so you are meeting the greatest needs of children in your area, or having the greatest impact possible with the available funding commitment. Having the flexibility to change, expand or narrow down your goal requires agreement by other investing partners. Keep a clear record about how and why goals are adjusted, as this will help you to understand your motivations at future dates.