As far as the grant process, I believe it has taught me the importance of being an informed philanthropist. In the future, if I have the privilege to award a grant, or give my time and efforts to an organization/cause, I will now possess the skills to evaluate the impact/significance of my work. While many nonprofits are passionate about their work, it is worth my while to determine which will have the greatest impact overtime. Ultimately, I have come to realize that one's thoughtfulness and critical consideration are what constitute the most effective form of philanthropy.
I think that for me one expected yet also important take away I have is the impact of giving. I know that I have learned and seen throughout life that giving is extremely important, and this course only enhanced this value. Another thing that I took away from this course was that there are many types of ways to give and sometimes base necessities such as food and water may not necessary be the best way to use your money or donations every time as there are many ways to make impacts in an organization or in someones life. The final takeaway from this class is to be understanding of someone's situation or an organization's situation as it may not be directly the same as yours, but it still may be important. I feel like that is why it is important to really look into what each organization or person is about and what they may use the money for because this leads you towards picking the best candidate for your grant or assistance as opposed to just blindly choosing.
I think my role as a philanthropist has drastically changed after experiencing the grant making process. As we've discussed throughout the class and in the beginning of the year, a philanthropist is not one type of person. Understanding my peers' experience in the process, and having it be a parallel to mine, allows me to recognize how despite our very different lives, we are still able to work together for the same cause. I never considered philanthropy as collaborative work, but now I can barely imagine it non collaboratively. This process also gave me insight to the thousands of organizations that might not be recognized by philanthropists, but are just as qualified for a grant of this size. Overall, I am so grateful to be a part of this experience, and I plan on continuing to participate in all forms of philanthropy throughout my life.
There were so many effective nonprofits that were so similar to each other that I never really had to worry about the funds going to an organization that would have a minimal impact on the issue of homelessness in SF. However I also understand that this is not always the case, and that in order to truly understand the effectiveness of an organization you have to look past the easily accessible information (theory of change, mission statement) and dig into the more telling information such as their funding, expenses, and prior successes or failures.
This grant process has taught me all the necessary skills to be an informed philanthropist in the years to come. It has taught me what to look for, what to avoid, and developed an understanding of what I really care about and hope to affect. I has taught me that whatever I have to offer is appreciated and that if I don't have money to give I can still make an impact.
The grant process for me, changed my opinion on what it meant to be a philanthropist. Looking back at it I realize that before money and volunteering, the only real thing that someone or something needs is to be noticed. I say this because all of the organizations that were being considered were doing great things. Although all the organizations were doing great things the final organizations were all organizations that before anything gave the person or thing there own voice and noticed them. I think that seeing this has shaped my opinion because I am able to realize that philanthropy is all about making the issue or problem noticeable and create change. But before you can do that you need to know all you can about the issue, and you can't know everything about the issue without hearing all the voices and all the opinions involved.
Write something about yourself. No need to be fancy, just an overview.