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Module 4: Unit 1

Understanding the philanthropic sector

Understanding the depth and diversity of the non-profit and philanthropic sector is no easy task for even the most experienced philanthropist.

This section provides tools and resources for younger family members to get a better sense of the local, regional, national and international philanthropic sector, and their role in it.

Read (15 minutes)
Reflections on philanthropy from today’s leaders: #NextGenDonors Here you will find a brief overview of the core experiences and attitudes of four current living adult generations and the importance of volunteer experience with nonprofits.
Read (20 minutes)
Connecting youth and strengthening communities Intuitively, we know that joining an organization, attending a public meeting or donating time or money to a charitable cause can all contribute to the social good. But there is a growing body of research that highlights additional benefits for individuals and society. Civic engagement is not just a feel-good element of community life or a benign expression of citizenship. New data and research explored in this paper indicate it may also be an effective way to build social capital and valuable skills.
Tune-in (15 minutes)
Philanthropic landscape 2013: Building the nonprofit sectors future leaders Watch this inspirational speech by Elizabeth George, Vice President of the Deaconess Foundation, who talks about the importance of investing in people within an organization. This is transferrable to your family’s giving and the youth involved in it.
Tune-in (60 minutes)
Innovation and technology in nonprofits and corporate philanthropy A panel of leaders discuss giving as an inherent social activity. Gain ideas on how to involve next gen donors more interactively and in a fun way.
Do (5 minutes)


Contact your local community foundations

Completing the acitivity: A great way to find out about the local nonprofits in your area is to contact your local community foundations. Set up a meeting with a staff member and your youth and find out how they can start giving now. 

Do (20 minutes)


Youth Giving Committees

Completing the acitivity: Many Community Foundations and Non-profits have youth giving boards or volunteer committees. Some examples of this are The Youth Philanthropy Initiative of Indiana or The Council of Michigan Foundation's youth advisory committees. You may also contact Youth Philanthropy Connect to find what youth philanthropy groups are in your area.

Do (45 minutes)

givingcommunitiesExplore Bolder Giving's list of giving communities

Completing this acitivity: A Giving Community is a peer network of donors generally formed around some shared identity or interest. Giving Communities offer members opportunities for education, community building and peer support. Because of the power dynamics and norms of silence about money, many donors report feeling isolated and alone as they consider their philanthropy – a Giving Community offers a space for donors to move past this isolation and find the support and learning that will help them become engaged and effective givers.