Dr. Beth Breeze, director of the Centre for Philanthropy at the University of Kent, recently wrote a rousing piece in defence of philanthropy.
Beth writes: “those currently shouting the loudest about the ills of philanthropy often associate themselves with – and gain social media kudos from those occupying – the more radical end of the political spectrum. But having worked in and studied the nonprofit sector all of my adult life, I simply did not recognize critics’ blanket depictions of big givers as tax-dodging plutocrats with mendacious motives.
“I knew first-hand that many progressive causes – from ending homelessness, child poverty, and modern slavery to advancing equalities and tackling the climate crisis – sought and received crucial income from wealthier supporters. And my research showed that these ‘elite’ donors – just like regular donors – have mixed motivations, including gratitude for help they’ve received, empathy with those sharing similar personal experiences (good and bad), religious conviction, a desire to make a difference, and anger at the existence of unmet needs.
“Critics might still question the legitimacy of encouraging the wealthy to fund whichever causes they happen to care about, but the reverse question is also valid: What kind of democracy would prevent concerned citizens from doing as they choose with their time, money, and talents?”
You can read Beth’s full article here: