Philanthropy and community have always been closely connected to one another. While a lot of people focus their efforts on international and national philanthropic organizations, localized charity is becoming more and more popular. Every neighborhood has some kind of organization that focuses on the needs of that community. In larger cities, there are often thousands of local philanthropies. Charities that cater exclusively to the local community lack large funding from other sources and generally rely on the community to provide the money, volunteers, and assistance to help them run. Local philanthropy allows the people who live in the area to directly participate in causes they feel strongly about and they can see the tangible difference these organizations make.
Local people make their own decisions
One of the most appealing aspects of local philanthropy is that it gives the people of the community the ability to make decisions regarding the philanthropic organization. Instead of having to rely on people from outside the community or an organization in another city or state, townspeople know exactly what their time and money is being used to do. It makes the philanthropy more personal and leads to a greater sense of fulfillment, because you’re making a difference in your own community. In local philanthropy, people know those who run the charity and also the people who are benefiting from its services. That way, if an organization ever fails to perform the way it should, the community knows and prevent any waste of resources.
Helps those in the community
People love their communities and want to see them flourish. When philanthropy and the community come together, it makes the town a better place to live. You’re able to directly help your neighbors and friends, which leaves a greater impact on everyone involved. The community becomes a better place because people are happier and know they can rely on the others who live around them if they ever suffer a misfortune. For example, if a family loses their home in a fire, the community rallies around them to raise money for new belongings and can help them find a place to live. If someone recently lost a job and is having trouble providing the family with food, the community delivers food and can help the person find a new job.
Creates strong ties between neighbors
The mindset of combining philanthropy with community leads to incredibly strong ties between neighbors. If something ever goes wrong, community members know they have each other to rely on. Even if the philanthropy focuses on cleaning up the local parks or taking care of stray animals, it brings the community closer because they’re doing good together. Learning how to ask for and give help makes the humanity of the community more pronounced and creates stronger connections between locals.
Brings resources to the community
In some instances, larger philanthropies come into communities and open up local philanthropies. When a philanthropy first opens in a community, it likely brings more resources. Even with entirely local philanthropies, people donate money to improve the community in some way, whether it’s to assist a local family, raise money for the library or school, or something else. Philanthropies help improve the community by making the quality of life better for the people who live there and encouraging people to share their skills and resources with one another.