Thanks a lot to Mike Dillion for sharing the way he is trying to teach his children about charitable giving. Here is an excerpt from his blog, [K: emphasis mine]
A few years ago, we tried something in order to better create a connection between our children and charitable giving. We gave each of them a sum of money to donate to the charity of their choice. The only requirement was that they had to research the charity, explain why it was selected and what portion of their donation would actually go to the recipients (after administrative expenses).
Our success was mixed. Each year, my youngest would select any charity that helps “puppies”. [...]
This year, we decided to do something different. I’ve been reading about the positive impact of “micro lending” or “micro credit”. It received attention recently when the Nobel Peace Prize went to Muhammed Yunus for his work in this area. [...] [K: For more information, see my blog entry about Muhammad Yunus and Grameen Bank.]
So this year, we gave each child money to loan through an MFI [Micro financing institutions]. There are many of them, but we are using Kiva. As the children read the stories about the different people seeking loans you could sense a connection being made. When I asked why they wanted to fund a given loan, the answers included things like: “they will use the money to hire someone else, which will help their community” or “they have repaid a loan successfully in the past” or “she is supporting her entire family with her business” or, more importantly, “the amount they need for their business is less than what all my Legos cost.”
I’m not sure how effective this will be, but it looks promising. My daughter was excited to tell us that her loan recipient (a barber in Uganda who is requesting a loan to expand his business) is now fully funded. And, my son is already looking for additional loans to fund after his initial loan is repaid.
Lovely seeds. (smile)