To develop your family philanthropy process, you must first ask yourselves, “What do we want to accomplish with our giving?” For example, do you want to make an impact on a few individuals, improve the ability of an organization to better serve the community, or are a fundamental change in society? The best and most satisfying philanthropy is driven by your values, experiences, and traditions and focuses on the issue(s) you are passionate about. Values are passed down through families and shaped through life experiences, memorable moments, and important people in your life. To help you articulate and define your values, consider those people or life experiences that have been strong influences on you. When you and your family define what you stand for, you can determine what kind of giver you want to be, and the kind of organizations and causes you wish to support. This allows your family to link your giving to the community issues that are of greatest significance to you.
THESE QUESTIONS MAY HELP YOU FOCUS YOUR GIVING:
- What are your basic values?
- How have these values been expressed through your giving?
- As donors and volunteers, why have you made gifts of money and time?
- What have been your most significant gifts?
- Do you know whether your efforts have made a difference?
- Which of your gifts have given you the most satisfaction? Why?
- Which have given the least satisfaction? Why?
- What is your vision for a collaborative giving 3ffort within the family?
- What would you like to accomplish in the larger world with your giving?
- Are there family dynamics that you need to investigate before doing the actual work of giving together?
- What skills do you need to draw on or develop to work together?
- Is there agreement among the family members about what you should or should to do with your giving program?
- If your family creates a common philanthropic agenda, what should be its guiding principles?