Making an Impact
Story by Hannah Clark
If you’re reading this article, you most likely want your business to be seen as a force for good, and there is no shortage of good causes vying for your support. But while the Lowcountry alone is fortunate to have dozens of local charities and nonprofits – not considering the thousands of philanthropic organizations that exist worldwide – the amount of potential partnership options can get a bit overwhelming. You might want to support them all, but what do you do if your budget says otherwise?
When deciding what cause or organization to support through your business, the best decision is the strategic one. Here’s how to choose which charity or nonprofit to support through your business.
Define your values
Before researching specific organizations, take the time to clarify your company’s values and the objectives you hope to achieve through your philanthropic efforts. Consider the social issues or causes that resonate with your team and align with your brand identity. Whether it’s environmental sustainability, education, poverty alleviation or healthcare, having a clear focus will streamline your selection process.
Once you’ve clarified your business’s values, you can start comparing them to those of potential partner organizations. Determine how well each nonprofit or charity aligns with your values, culture, goals and whether they have a clear strategic plan and measurable outcomes that resonate with your objectives.
Look for long-term opportunities
Committing to a cause for an extended period of time will demonstrate your business’s reliability. While the short-term impact is essential, it’s equally crucial to consider the long-term sustainability and scalability of the organization’s programs and initiatives and your ability to see a long-term fundraising effort through.
Evaluate the outcomes
Finally, consider the impact of metrics and measurements the nonprofit or charity employs. A transparent and accountable organization will have well-defined metrics to track progress and demonstrate the effectiveness of its programs. Clear outcome measurements will help you assess the return on investment of your support and ensure that your contributions make a real difference.
Remember, money is not the only valuable donation
Not having much leeway in your budget shouldn’t deter you from partnering with a charity or nonprofit. While financial contributions are crucial for supporting charitable organizations, there are often opportunities to provide more than just monetary donations. By leveraging your time, expertise and resources, you can impact the organization you choose to support.