Don’t hit the “Donate” button just yet.
Are you sure you know enough about the nonprofit you are about to donate your hard-earned money to?
Sure, it’s likely a legitimate charity. The finances look robust, the staff seems passionate, and the board is made up of hard-working professionals.
All of that is fine, but how good is it at solving hunger, creating green cities or improving community health?
To know that, you have to know its story.
Like anything you read in a novel or watch in a blockbuster movie, the nonprofit you are about to support should have an effective story about where it’s been and where it’s going. The most effective stories are those in which there’s a hero who undergoes some sort of growth or revelation.
Does your nonprofit have a hero? Does it have a staff member who has worked tirelessly to assist a client through a traumatic experience? Or has it helped a family from losing its home in the Great Recession and now that same family has gone on to help other families from losing their homes?
Have you read a story like that? If you did, that would surely inspire you to give, right?
A well-honed story can help an agency connect with supporters, investors, employees, and the broader community — and, with any luck, keep them engaged for a long time.
So before you donate, ask yourself: does this organization have any heroes?
If the answer is yes, then hit “Donate” now and again, again and again.