November 15th is National Philanthropy Day in Canada. While this is a day that is celebrated around the world, Canada is the first to officially recognize it as a national day (this type of thing makes me proud to be Canadian!). This is a time to celebrate and thank those that give beyond themselves. The great thing about philanthropy is that it is giving from our hearts, giving because we want to give and because we want to help others. Some people give money to causes they support and others give time by volunteering. Some give both. In any case these are gifts from the heart that make a huge difference the world over.
Without philanthropy we would be lacking in countless services and great initiatives. Consider the work that is done by non-profits that fills the holes left by government and corporations, work that provides for the needs of our communities and families. Your local search and rescue, food banks, churches, environmental causes, health related charities, homeless shelters, or those helping countries affected by dire circumstances are all activities that cannot happen without philanthropy. Without people that are willing to give of themselves, and go the extra mile, the great initiatives that ensure our communities and those in need are cared for, would cease.
Philanthropy not only supports a cause, it builds democratic discourse, it strengthens societies and provides a connection to one another in a busy world. On that note, let’s not forget to teach our children to see beyond themselves too. A great way to involve children is to encourage them to join you in donating or volunteering for causes or organizations that you give to.
I could not appreciate philanthropists more for contributing to the greater good, and helping non profits accomplish their vastly diverse, and invariably noble missions. Whether you support animal welfare, environmental causes, efforts to strengthen communities, your local community foundation or the Canadian Cancer Society to fight against cancer, I thank you. I appreciate that you care. I cannot begin to imagine this country or this world without philanthropists!