Giving with Purpose: Relevance

This week, the Giving With Purpose online course introduces the RISE Framework for Social Change, which provides a means of assessing nonprofit giving opportunities. The RISE framework can be viewed as a “charitable checklist.”

RISE stands for Relevance (connectedness), Impact (making a difference), Sustainability (managing money wisely), and Excellence in Management & Operations (capacity for doing work well). These concepts will be further developed through the remaining lectures.

This week’s class focused especially on the “R” of RISE  (Relevance), and posed some important questions for reflection, and to encourage thoughtful and deliberate giving:

  • “Why do you give?
  • “What matters to you?
  • “What’s the change you’d like to see in the world?”

Some other, more specific questions were also raised in this week’s course, that are helpful in determining the kinds of causes and organizations that are personally relevant to you:

  • “What role you want giving to play in your life, especially in regard to your religious, ethical, political, and social values, beliefs, and worldview?
  • “Are there methods of change that you are especially interested in, such as direct service to individuals, community programs, research, policy advocacy, or social enterprise?
  • “Are there specific problems or issues you feel compelled to address, such as education, health, hunger, or the environment?
  • Are there groups or populations that matter to you, such as youth, the elderly, immigrants, or veterans?”

In the guest lecture portion, Hall of Fame baseball player Cal Ripken Jr. reflected on his own answers to some of these important questions as he discussed his motivation and goals for giving, including meaningful interactions and measurable results.

How do these questions apply to your giving, whether through a foundation, a donor advised fund, or simply as an individual?

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