Burwell: Impactful givingWritten by Keith Burwell | | Keith@toledocf.org
I’m asked at least once a week “How is the Toledo Community Foundation doing this year?” Really, the question behind the question is “How is the community doing and how’s the giving to nonprofit organizations going this year?”
I take great pride in telling folks locally and across the nation about the generous community in which we live. That is especially true this year as the foundation field celebrates the 100th anniversary of the first community foundation in Cleveland.
During the week of Nov. 12-18, more than 700 community foundations across America will celebrate Community Foundation Week.
While this has been an annual event for the past 25 years, most community foundations mention but never really celebrate the week. That’s because community foundations like ours work daily, out of the spotlight, to help bring about a better community by fostering local collaboration and innovation to address our community’s challenges.
Toledo Community Foundation operates as an independent public entity and stewards philanthropic resources from business, institutional and individual donors to local nonprofits that are the heart of our strong, vibrant community.
So when I answer the initial question, I’m not just thinking about the foundation, but of our community. At a time when government capacity to solve our most pressing problems is limited, the Toledo Community Foundation must do its part and work to offer real solutions. It is through our support and giving that we equip the right organizations for the front lines of positive change in our community.
The Toledo Community Foundation believes one of the only ways to achieve this goal of bettering our community is through the leveraging of relationships and resources — the days of going it alone either as an organization or a donor are past.
For giving to be impactful in today’s world, each of us must make a commitment to collaborate with local, state and national partners to tackle our community’s toughest challenges — in education, health care, job training and creation, poverty and more.
Toledo Community Foundation continues to help lead the charge to mobilize the commitment and creativity in our community to find new and better ways to improve the lives of our neighbors in need.
But even coming from a field with 100 years of experience, the Toledo Community Foundation cannot do it alone. It will take all of us giving and participating in philanthropy.
The old expression is as true today as it was in the past — our community needs your “time, talent and treasure” to succeed. And believe it or not, everyone can be a philanthropist. You do not need to be a Rockefeller or Gates to make a difference. There are opportunities for you to help, both in your lifetime and beyond.
I speak daily to folks about simple tools for giving that will result in future gifts to your community — be it an IRA, life insurance, real estate or other vehicle. Everyone can play in the world of philanthropy.
We often forget that the word “philanthropy” means the love of humanity. So both personally and professionally, I would say to you: Be a philanthropist — show your love!
Keith Burwell is president of Toledo Community Foundation. To learn more, contact Philanthropic Services Officers Ken Frisch or Bridget Brell Holt at (419) 241-5049, email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.toledocf.org.