In May of 2007, I had lots of extra income my websites were doing very well, and I was working at Microsoft, and I had just had a windfall, and I decided that I was going to give back.
I set up a fund and picked 5 charities to receive $30k a year for 5 years. I didn’t want to do 1 year donations because I wanted the organizations to build programs that were sustainable, and not just drop the money in to a general fund.
5 years later I am discontinuing the funding, for all but 1 of the organizations.
I am going to continue with my donation to Planned Parenthoods “New Parent” program which teaches new parents how to care for a baby.
I am discontinuing my support of a Girl Scouts Camping organization because over the years they have changed their stance on scholarships and community support of same sex parents.
I am discontinuing my support of an Africa Water Purification program because they made their services dependent on attendance of their prayer services.
The Camp program that I was sponsoring for the development of a team and leadership program is now self-sustaining and doesn’t need my funding.
The 3 students I created a scholarship for graduated from their high school this past weekend. 2 are going to take their $10k for the last year and apply it to college. The 3rd, I am very proud to say is using the funding to start a “cloud based” shipping business. I think she is going to fall flat on her face, but I think she will learn so much in the effort that she will be ready for what ever is next. That makes me proud because we talked about what the goal is. “If I spend 5 grand on advertising, and 2 grand on creating a great website and 3 grand on networking, I may not make my 10 grand back, but I’m sure I will learn more than what I would learn in my first year of college.”
I haven’t decided what I’m going to do after. There were months when I had seriously wished I had that money in my bank account. 5 years later I look back and think. I could have a lot of fun if I had 3/4 of a million bucks in the bank. At the same time… I had an excuse to go to Africa. I made a huge difference in the lives of 3 kids, and created opportunity for a camp that would have closed its doors to stay open for years to come.
From that perspective… It has been a really great 5 years.
If your organization wants to be funded, tell me why, hit me up offline. But be aware, you can’t be pushing a religion, and you have to make an impact in children’s lives.