A Philanthropic Experience

  1. I learned that there’s multiple important factors to take into consideration before donating to a charity. It is important to be able to trust in your charity, and feel certain that the money you are donating is going directly to the cause that it is important to you. Unfortunately, there are people who take advantage of those who are generous with their money, so you have to make sure that you are giving to a credible organization. It is much easier than I realized to find a charities tax forms online, and this is a great resource for finding out financial matters, such as how much a charity makes in donations, and where it spends the money.
  2. It is important to look in the numbers so you can know for certain where your money is going. If a charity is not putting its time and effort towards the things that you value, it is not worth investing in them. For example, I found out that the Ronald McDonald House, a charity I researched, actually only gets 10% of its funds from McDonalds, and therefore relies heavily on donors. I also found out that they spend about 14 cents to raise each dollar they collect.
  3. I have learned that there are so many charities out there that need help of any kind, whether that’s a big donation, small donation, or even just donating your time. I was extremely impressed after visiting the Ronald McDonald House, so when the director told us they were looking for volunteers I was happy to realize I could be of use aside from any money donations.
  4. I researched the San Diego Refugee Tutoring Program, which helps refugees in elementary school learn English and acclimate to the American school system. Their mission, to help students in need, closely aligned with ours, because we thought the most important thing was to give younger students the foundation to succeed, regardless of their background. I also researched the Sea Education Association, whose mission is to help teach kids about sailing and safety on boats. While this association had to do with education and safety of young students, it did not completely align with our mission to promote more accessible education, which is ultimately why we didn’t choose it.
  5. Our group ultimately donated to the Ronald McDonald House, which provides a hotel-like option for families to stay in, just feet from some major San Diego hospitals. This is a great resource for families of children, enabling them to stay close by and comfortable during stressful times. They provide a classroom setting for the family members of sick kids, which was completely in line with our mission. We went to visit and were so impressed by the way that they attempt to make families feel at home and keep up with their childrens’ education, especially in such a situation where their sick siblings are usually considered the priority.
  6. I hope our donation will be used to keep the students at the Ronald McDonald House on track in their education. The elementary school age is such an important time, and a strong foundation of knowledge can make a huge difference in the future, so it is good to see people working to make sure no child is left behind. I also would like to volunteer there myself because I was so impressed by the people we met and the entire organization.

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