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Share the Joy and Unique Promise of Giving for Gender Equality

Editor’s Note: I wrote this post a year ago, but I 100% endorse it again as the best use of your Giving Tuesday resources.

Since starting Philanthropy Women, we have chosen to embrace Giving Tuesday each year in different ways, but always as a great opportunity to give back to women. This year we are celebrating Giving Tuesday by naming our Top 10 Picks for feminist giving for the day. We hope you enjoy the list and relish the experience of making an intentional gift to one or all of them on Giving Tuesday.

giving tuesday 2020
Did you know that research from the Women’s Philanthropy Institute showed that in 2018, women gave the majority, 64.9%, of dollars donated on Giving Tuesday? Perhaps that’s because women generally look for opportunities to give, and when a new holiday is established where the sole purpose is to give to charity, women are all over it.

#1 Women’s Fund of Rhode Island or Your State’s Women’s Fund

There is really no better bang for your charity buck than your own local women’s fund. Ours here in Rhode Island does a fantastic job of gender equality education and training, civic engagement, and grantmaking. Imagine if every adult in Rhode Island (roughly 800,000 people) gave just $1 to the Women’s Foundation of Rhode Island? That would mean $800,000 in resources that would exponentially increase the education, engagement, and grantmaking for one of the most influential women’s organizations in the state. Then we could really see what WFRI is capable of in terms of helping our state move toward gender equality. If you don’t live in Rhode Island, you can find your local women’s fund by visiting the Women’s Funding Network where most state and regional women’s funds are members.

#2 Desai Foundation

The Desai Foundation out of the Boston area is doing a bang-up job of growing opportunities for women and girls through its vocational classes, health camps, volunteer outreach, and sanitary napkin programs. By destigmatizing period poverty and turning sanitary pad production and distribution into a small business women can run on their own, Desai has done some groundbreaking work. As a foundation that converted into an on-the-ground nonprofit, Desai estimates it has impacted 682,000 people in Gujarat, Rajasthan, Maharashtra, and Uttar Pradesh, India, Boston, and New York. This year, through its Masks of Hope program, it is also employing women in sewing masks during the COVID pandemic.

Information on how to donate for Giving Tuesday can be found on the lower half of their homepage. Desai is encouraging donors to make gifts in honor of women who inspire them as an added way to “pay it forward” for women on Giving Tuesday.

#3 Plan International

We got to hear from Plan International’s President and CEO, Dr. Tessie San Martin, about the recent deep pivot of this global organization toward women and girls, as well as youth leadership, in one of our webinars this past year. Plan continues to do extensive work around the globe, with more of that work than ever now being centered on women and girls. Given the organizations’s wide reach and deep roots in development, donating to Plan is a very strong and easy way to optimize your Giving Tuesday dollars this year for women and girls.

#4 African American Policy Forum

We started writing about Kimberlé Crenshaw back in 2016 and have been following her work with the African American Policy Forum ever since. Crenshaw is the originator of intersectionality, helping us to appreciate and account for the multiple layers of identity discrimination that some people face. Crenshaw and AAPF also do extensive work facilitating high level thought leadership with the Under the Blacklight webinar series. Donate to AAPF here.

#5 ERA Coalition

For those of us doing the long run on feminism, it’s time to put passing the ERA back on the front burner, and a great way to do that is by funding the ERA Coalition and its sister organization, the Fund for Women’s Equality. We liveblogged a recent webinar about new leadership for these groups, and are impressed with how they are bringing together multiple stakeholders to get this legislation passed. Under the Biden-Harris administration, passing the ERA will be a critical factor in the big push to accelerate gender equality movements, so please fund the ERA Coalition and the Fund for Women’s Equality today. Special gifts for monthly donors!

#6 Women of Color in Fundraising and Philanthropy

Another important new leader in the gender equality giving realm is Yolanda F. Johnson, founder of Women of Color in Fundraising and Philanthropy. Johnson is doing amazing groundwork to create a strong network for women of color to build themselves more professional influence in the giving realm. Supporting this young organization is a great way to celebrate Giving Tuesday for women and girls and also give a boost to a marginalized group within the philanthropy realm.

#7 Ms. Foundation for Women

Ms. Foundation’s Pocket Change report told us all we needed to know about lack of funding for women and girls of color, and helped to place the onus of responsibility on those with resources to do something about this gross inequity. Helping the Ms. Foundation amplify its work to address this funding gap is a great way to get the most out of your Giving Tuesday dollars.

#8 Women’s eNews

So many stories about women simply never make it into the mainstream media. Women’s eNews has been on the case about this problem for the past two decades, and continues to do top notch work in helping to get the relevant narratives into the media that help address gender discrimination. Any spare change you can throw their way this Giving Tuesday will be money well spent.

This election season has given us an unusual opportunity to make an enormous impact by gaining more Democratic seats in the U.S. Senate in Georgia during runoff elections in January. Stacey Abrams and are working hard to try to take back the Senate, and wow, what a powerful way to spend some of your Giving Tuesday money! If you do donate, I bet you’ll be thanking your stars soon that you did.

#10 A Call to Men

There is much to be gained by our culture coming to understand the role that men must play in advancing rights for women and girls. A Call to Men is an organization doing that work — helping men to recognize the harmful gender roles that may be influencing their lives, and calling them to take responsibility for changing their ways so that the women around them feel empowered. Supporting A Call to Men is a great way to take your support for women and girls in new directions.


P.S. We’d also love it if you would consider supporting Philanthropy Women with a donation or by buying some art. Happy Giving Tuesday!


For Giving Tuesday, Join Us in Giving to Women’s Fund of RI

(Liveblog) Empowering Gender Equality with ERA Coalition

Giving Tuesday 2019 Reports Nearly $2 Billion in U.S. Donations

Author: Kiersten Marek

Kiersten Marek, LICSW, is the founder of Philanthropy Women. She practices clinical social work in Cranston, Rhode Island, and writes about how women donors and their allies are advancing social change.
View all posts by Kiersten Marek

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Nearly six in ten Americans prefer a donation in their name to a gift | Philanthropy news

Nearly six in ten (59 percent) Americans say they would rather have a donation made on their behalf to their favorite charity than receive a gift for themselves this year, a report from Fidelity Charitable finds.

Based on a survey of more than fifteen hundred American adults, the report, Year-end charitable giving: A 2021 snapshot of how Americans plan to give (8 pages, PDF), found that 64 percent of respondents said they participate in year-end charitable activities, including giving money (53 percent) or donating goods (46 percent) to charities, donating cash or goods directly to families in need (27 percent), performing random acts of kindness (25 percent), and volunteering (20 percent).

Among respondents who have a minimum of $25,000 in investable assets and donated at least $1,000 to charity in 2020, 35 percent said they plan to give “notably more” in 2021, 57 percent planned to give “about the same,” and 8 percent planned to give “notably less.” Within this group, 87 percent of respondents reported using cash, checks, or credit cards to give, while fewer said they were aware of other giving options and even fewer had ever used options such as donating appreciated assets, including publicly traded securities (55 percent aware, 18 percent used) and privately held or restricted stock (54 percent, 17 percent), making a qualified charitable distribution from an IRA (54 percent, 18 percent), or giving through donor-advised funds (41 percent, 17 percent).

The survey also found that 63 percent of respondents who give said they would “definitely” (31 percent) or “probably” (32 percent) take advantage of a temporary federal law allowing tax deductions for some cash donations even if the taxpayer doesn’t itemize their taxes.

“At such a busy time, it’s easy to put off year-end charitable decisions, but there are advantages to acting early,” said Fidelity Charitable COO Kristen Robinson. “You can maximize your ability to support your favorite causes and your 2021 tax benefits using smart giving strategies. And while we encourage people not to run down the clock for practical reasons, we think it will be particularly meaningful to integrate charitable activity into holiday traditions this year after another challenging year that has reinforced the importance of supporting our communities and each other.”

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Top tips to make your Christmas fundraising campaigns shine!

‘Tis the season of giving and whether it’s snuck up on you this year, or if you’re well underway with your seasonal fundraising, we’re here to help make your appeal a successful one.

As an early Christmas present from us, we wanted to share some examples of interesting Campaigns on JustGiving and simple ideas to maximise your online fundraising this season. We hope these will give you some extra insight and inspiration to help get your campaign noticed and get you ready to hear the jingle of those all-important donations.

1. Choose simple but effective

Campaign: Southwark Foodbank Feed a Family Christmas 2020

Pecan on behalf of Southwark Foodbank made the most of their Campaign Page to encourage both direct donors’ and fundraisers’ support. Sharing stats and insights in both the video embedded on their page and their campaign story, they demonstrate the value of supporters’ donations.

Their big, bold ‘What your donation can do’ image is front and centre of their page, and they follow this with an infographic of great examples of how to fundraise and involve others too.

2. Re-think the Advent Calendar

Campaign: Friends and Families 24/7 Advent Challenge

Reverse advent calendars are growing in popularity and we’re seeing even more charities think outside the [chocolate] box this year. Whilst most reverse advent calendars see supporters set aside money every day of Advent and donate at Christmas, Friends and Families of Special Children did things a little differently last year and encouraged fundraisers to take up activities each day of the month instead.

The example activities would work for all ages and are perfect to get the whole family involved!

3. Remove steps for donors

Campaign: Cross Reach Stand with us this Christmas

Grant your donors their Christmas wish and give them a quick donation journey this year! Add a QR code to your collection bucket at your in-person event, to your printed marketing materials, or add a button to your seasonal newsletter using Giving Checkout.

Create your unique Giving Checkout link, customised QR code and chosen button in your JustGiving account and take donors straight into your tailored donation journey for your festive appeal, and with 0% fees. Cross Reach have already created theirs for their Stand with us this Christmas Appeal.

4. Unite virtually

Campaign: Blue Cross Step into Christmas 25k 2020

Blue Cross, the animal charity encouraged pet lovers to unite together virtually to either walk, jog or run 25km throughout the month of December.

They incentivised their fundraisers by offering a medal to mark their successful completion of the challenge, and an optional extra dog tag medal for any furry friends who took part too!

Challenges like this work perfectly with the JustGiving Strava integration, allowing fundraisers to track their distance covered throughout the month and share updates with their supporters.

5. Bring heart

Campaign: Cosmic Christmas Cracker Appeal

At this time of year social media is saturated and potential supporters are presented with numerous causes to donate to. Adding a personal story and photographs will bring your appeal to life and could resonate with a donor who would have otherwise carried on scrolling.

Adding descriptions of what specific donation amounts could do for your cause adds an even stronger incentive for donors and could encourage a higher donation amount too.

Cosmic did just this for their Christmas Cracker Appeal in 2020 in place of their usual appeal for toys and gifts.

Practical tips for running a successful online appeal at Christmas

If you’d like even more ideas and tips for your seasonal campaign this year, you can re-watch our Christmas 2021: How to run a successful Christmas appeal webinar and hear from Pecan and Blue Cross directly too.

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Helmsley Charitable Trust awards $5.2 million for diabetes self-care | Philanthropy news

The Leona M. and Harry B. Helmsley Charitable Trust has announced a three-year, $5.2 million grant to PATH to increase access to the safe administration of insulin and high-quality self-care for people living with diabetes.

According to the Helmsley Trust, more than 464 million people around the world have diabetes, and the majority of them live in low- and middle-income countries. More than half of people living with diabetes struggle to access the insulin and other medications they need, and an unrecognized segment of this population cannot access the commodities needed to measure their blood glucose or safely administer insulin.

The grant will support expansion of the Diabetes CarePak project, which provides products and consumables along with insulin and oral diabetes medication to people living with diabetes. Already underway in Kenya, the project will expand to Tanzania, Mozambique, and Mali and co-create educational content for people living with diabetes to facilitate their own self-care, as well as associated healthcare worker capacity building strategies and materials. The project will be conducted in partnership with people living with diabetes, healthcare providers, the ministries of health in Tanzania, Mozambique, and Mali, and other key health system stakeholders such as the Coalition for Access to NCD Medicines and Products and Life for a Child.

“As we work to create a sustainable, global movement that supports people living with type 1 diabetes to thrive, regardless of location, PATH is an ideal partner,” said Helmsley Trust Type 1 Diabetes program officer Estefania Palomino. “It is unacceptable that insulin and other lifesaving products necessary to maintain safe levels of blood glucose are unaffordable or inconsistently available in many countries. The innovative Diabetes CarePak project has the potential to drastically reduce or eliminate this disparity for many individuals in need.”

(Photo credit: GettyImages)

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