The Benefits of Philanthropy
May 26, 2018 11:00AM
By Emily Miranda
Ten Reasons to Give
By Emily Miranda
WHETHER GIVING TIME, money or a bag of children’s toys, charitable giving not only impacts the lives of the receivers, but also the givers. Giving is said to improve one’s mental, financial and social wellbeing more than if the money were spent on oneself. Here’s a better understanding of how charitable giving may better impact your life.
1. REDUCE YOUR TAXES
Charitable donations can reduce your tax bill. These donations include items such as clothing, toys, furniture, etc., to charity. All can be claimed as a tax deduction. Your tax bill reduces nearly 25 cents for every dollar you donate, which can add up to a fairly substantial bonus, especially for those who make a higher income.
2. REDUCE STRESS LEVELS
When you volunteer your time, you’re not only giving back to the organization, but also opening a door for new friendships and the opportunity to be a part of something greater than yourself. This can reduce stress levels and feelings of isolation. Some research shows that those who give experience lower blood pressure and reduced stress levels than those who don’t.
3. IMPROVE YOUR WORK MORALE
Does the company you work for hold giving campaigns? These campaigns can benefit you and your fellow employees. Data shows that corporations who hold giving campaigns create an organic team building opportunity as well as a volunteer opportunity for employees. Employees who participate in such corporate causes are shown to have higher morale.
This also gives employees a sense of purpose and belonging within the work environment.
4. BE HAPPIER
Giving can create greater feelings of joy and a more fulfilling sense of contentment in your life. Sharing your time, money and talents not only adds happiness to your life, but also to those around you, because being a generous person is both fun and inspiring for others.
5. ENHANCE YOUR COMMUNITY
By giving to community organizations, you are not only supporting the financial welfare of your community, but also contributing to the local safety nets put in place for unforeseen emergencies. Giving to local programs can enhance your own community’s welfare.
6. GREATER SATISFACTION
Volunteering your time can result in greater, overall satisfaction in life. Think of the philanthropic people in your life and compare them to those who don’t volunteer or give. Is there a difference in their overall outlook on life? It’s becoming more evident to researchers that those who give and volunteer their time are more satisfied than those who don’t.
7. IMPROVE YOUR HEALTH
The older you get, the more beneficial volunteering can become for your health. Volunteering can boost your physical resilience, improve mental functions and decrease stagnant activities (e.g. watching television, sitting, etc.). Such indicators can improve your overall health, especially the health of older individuals.
Every time you act generously, give or volunteer, your brain reacts by releasing a surge of dopamine and endorphins, resulting in a sense of joy and contentment, also known as “giver’s glow.” This experience is set off by charitable acts, and can feel both pleasurable and peaceable and far more rewarding than an exciting night out or a shopping spree.
9. BECOME PASSIONATE
Giving your time and money to an organization or project can easily awaken a passion within. Being passionate about something can lower chances of depression while igniting a hopeful approach to life. Being passionate about an organization, and actively doing something to support it, can also influence others to get involved.
10. INCREASE YOUR INFLUENCE
For those programs and causes you are most passionate about, being a charitable giver can grant you more influence in the organization. Program directors are more prone to letting financially invested volunteers take part in board meetings, or become board members. This allows you a more influential position within the organization and its decision-making process when it comes to activities you take a strong interest in.