Thursday, June 02, 2005

A Vision for Philanthropy

I want a democratic philanthropic sector.

I want a sector "of the people, by the people, for the people."

I want a world in which anyone with a personal computer, an Internet connection, time to spare, money to burn, and a desire to make a difference can become a philanthropist.

I want to be able to walk in to a public library tomorrow, sit at a public terminal on a public network, and, from there, at little or no cost, start my own giving vehicle - be it giving circle, donor-advised fund, or private foundation.

I want, with a few taps on a keyboard and a few clicks of a mouse, to make investment decisions, make grants, and report on my efforts to the appropriate authorities and to the public at large.

I want a national conference, sponsored by the nation's largest philanthropies and attended by its smallest, to examine how this vision might be realized.

And I want the nation's wealthiest ten foundations to commit substantial sums over the next twenty years to the promise of this new democratic philanthropy.

The people are to be given a place to stand and a lever long enough, and, together, we will move the earth.

From this day forward, the legacy of Prometheus is to be the birthright of all who aspire to it.

1 comment:

Phil Cubeta said...

Will link this to The World We Want.