This summer New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg and financier George Soros donated a combined $60 million to the Young Men’s Initiative, which aims to enable low-income Black and Latino men to pursue education and jobs as alternatives to crime. The publicity surrounding this tremendous gift (which I learned about on Poverty Insights) is an indicator of how much our society exalts the actions of celebrity philanthropists. This publicity also highlights our tendency to view high-impact social investing as something done only by the very rich. It is as if what the rest of us have to contribute doesn’t really matter.
We should think again. Though chances are you have much less to give than Bloomberg or Soros, don’t let that deter you from doing what you can to invest in opportunity for low-income people – whether that means donating money or volunteering your time. The nonprofits featured on this blog need all the help they can get, and that includes yours. Maybe what you have to give won’t get publicity but it will surely make an impact. And isn’t that what really counts!