What Good Are You In the Market For?

Imagine if you walked into a hardware store and asked for the best tool they have.

I’m willing to bet the hardware store worker would immediately ask what you need the tool to do. They wouldn’t be able to identify the best tool without knowing what you’re trying to get done with it. There isn’t really any such thing as a ‘best’ tool – but there is a best tool for your goal.

This logic also applies to charitable organizations. I often get asked which organization is the best one to support, and I have to ask the same question as a hardware store worker would: what are you hoping to get done?

Charitable organizations are like tools that we use to get to our goals. Just like different tools, different organizations are set up to do different jobs, and in different ways. The best one is the one that can deliver the results we’re excited about creating, and the one that operates in a way that suits our style.

What if I were to tell you that the local animal shelter is the ‘best’ charity I’ve ever seen, and you started volunteering with them on the strength of my advice? But what if you don’t really like animals, the shelter’s volunteer management style is a little too casual for your taste, and what you really care about is making your community a safe and healthy place for immigrant seniors?

Although it may be doing great work, that animal shelter wouldn’t really be the best organization for you to support. On the other hand, the local seniors’ drop in centre might be a perfect fit. Because it’s working on something that’s very meaningful for you, the drop in centre could be the best charity for you.

So – what good are you in the market for?

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