Main Street Philanthropy inspires future generations to become passionate philanthropists.

We lead small teams of students and their classroom teacher through a truly transformational experience that builds new philanthropic leaders for tomorrow.

The Idea

Main Street Philanthropy began with an observation and a question. Founders Ryan Ponsford and Scott Farnsworth help wealthy families discover their relationship to wealth and to one another. In their work with families, they both observed that one of the most effective ways to make a significant positive impact in the lives of teenagers and young adults was through meaningful, hands-on involvement in charitable giving and community service.
This led to a question: Could the lives of students from “Main Street” be similarly changed by experiencing the giving side of philanthropy – by becoming “philanthropists in training?” The answer, it turns out, is a resounding YES!!!
Main Street Philanthropy creates a dynamic, real-world experience in charitable giving with passion and intelligence. The process brings together small teams of students, their classroom teacher, an outside financial mentor (we call these volunteers our Ambassadors), generous donors, and front-line charities, all of whom benefit from this remarkable collaboration.
The Result: profound transformation. Minds are opened, possibilities are explored, imaginations are ignited, help is given, hearts are touched, and lives are changed— forever. As one young participant commented at the end of his eight-week journey into the world of philanthropy, “I never knew giving away money could be so hard – or so much fun.”