Smaller Gifts to Many or Larger Gifts to Few?

Dear Kim:

I give away 10% of my income, which comes to about $2,000 a year. I like giving to a lot of groups and getting their newsletters and knowing what is going on. I sometimes pass their newsletters along to friends and I always call my senator or do whatever they tell me, so I am not just a donor of money. But a good friend of mine says I should just pick one or two groups and give all my money to those because small gifts are not that useful. What do you think? It would be hard to decide which two groups to pick as I now support about 20 groups with gifts of $35-$250.

~A Cheerful Giver

Dear Cheerful:

You are not only cheerful, but also very generous.

And one of the privileges we have as donors is deciding how much to give and how many organizations to support. You are an active donor and get a lot of pleasure out of supporting a large number of organizations and that is fine. If you narrowed your giving to one or two groups, they would be very happy to get your $1,000, but the other 18 organizations would miss you. And not just your financial support, but your active and enthusiastic involvement in what they do. Your friend is well intentioned, but you need to listen to your heart. Your smallest gift, $35, is helpful.

Keep it up. We need way more generous people like you!

~Kim Klein