Direct Giving is the new philanthropy

Philanthropy is a fantastic idea, and in the hands of the mega-rich it can do some pretty amazing things. Unfortunately, sometimes the money doesn’t go where you think it goes with fundraising costs around the world swallowing up large portions of our lovingly donated cash. Research from last year suggests that the top 15 Australian charities (by income), were spending between 5% and 40% of donations on campaign costs.

2013 Charities

This is not to say that these costs are frivolous, it is just sometimes deflating for individuals to learn that their hard earned dollars aren’t going directly to projects that help those less fortunate. With this in mind, Sustaining People continues its review of direct giving; we began the discussion some weeks ago with a piece on GIVIT Kids, an online platform for children to donate funds and resources directly to families in need.

Below is a TED Talk recorded last month by veteran aid worker Joy Sun, who is the COO at GiveDirectly, an organisation similar to GIVIT in that in transfers funds directly to those who need it most. A really interesting and thought provoking talk that is worth sitting back and enjoying!

The benefits of this system is that these funds empower individuals and families to set their own goals and define their futures, rather than prescribe to an aid program that may not provide the right “hand-up” opportunity needed. There is certainly a place for large scale aid and philanthropy programs in our world, but it is great to see a different story gaining traction in the international community and providing the right resources to the right people, when they need it most.

If you have any other videos or interesting philanthropy stories to share, let us know in the comments below!