An Act of Balance–I have always volunteered. Philanthropy was something I searched out even as a teen. It was part of my education as well as part of my heart. Recently it was reported that JK Rowling moved herself from being one of the top billionaires due to her philanthropy! I would love to have that ability. While I don’t have a lot of disposable income what I do have is time and energy. I have given of my time to a food bank, the Revlon RunWalk(for its last 5 years), S.H.A.R.E, Inc(raising money for disabled children’s foundations in LA) Breast Health Education(both fundraising and teaching breast self exam), Literacy and encouraging reluctant readers through education of teachers, my children’s schools and The Joyful Heart Foundation. At this point I have probably missed some but this is enough to get the gist.
In each case my philanthropy was a mix of energy and enthusiasm. Each opportunity led me to meet amazing people and also to learn a great deal about fundraising. I have had several meetings assisting various groups to find their stories and their best ways of both connecting with people and raising money. Last year I had meetings with EIF and various schools sharing my knowledge in these areas.
Two weeks ago, for the first time in a long time, I found myself helping a friend with her event. I realized how excited I was to help and how it made me feel so energized to do so. I had to step back from fundraising in the last year as I wanted to spend time with my family without outside commitments but now I am back and looking for a home for all this knowledge. My friend had a successful first year event and we were talking about how to make the next time even better. I realized that along with my writing I want to continue to be a part of people changing the world, one fundraiser at a time.
If I look at what makes me happy it is to balance family life with writing and philanthropy. Now to find a way to do that!