If you’re like me, every other email, Facebook post or text message is asking for money.
Whether for a worthy local cause, for a political underdog, or to support an organization that helps advance your goals, seems like someone always wants to put their hand in your pocket!
In May, 2017, the Pew Research Center noted:
Americans are increasingly likely to make political donations, with the share of adults who say they have donated directly to candidates doubling since 1992, according to data from American National Election Studies (ANES). Political donations from individuals represent a large share of campaign funding: In the 2016 election cycle, 71% of Hillary Clinton’s fundraising total and 40% of Donald Trump’s came from individual contributions, according to the Center for Responsive Politics.
Last week. after I gave to a GoFundMe promoted by Capital District Border Watch and Ice-Free Capital District, two organizations I worked with a year ago on “Lights for Liberty,” I decided I wanted to be more strategic with my donations.
So, I set up a spreadsheet called “Political Kitty” with the dollar amount that I set aside for non-charitable contributions for 2020. I keep a running tally of the donations I’ve made. So far, I’ve given $136, ranging from $5 to $46. (Two notes – this is not tracking tax-deductible contributions nor tickets to fundraisers – for local candidates or causes – that we support or attend.)
I want to make sure I keep an eye on where I’m making my (admittedly small) investments. We’re going to need to mobilize every resource this year to turn things around.
Ultimately, this is an effort to more effectively leverage my privilege. I’m not worried about making rent or buying nourishing food. So – I’m asking myself – how can I best direct my financial resources to foster a more just and equitable world? I know I have work to do, but I hope this spreadsheet will be a first step.
So, are you taking any steps – no matter how seemingly inconsequential – to make sure we don’t just survive until 2021, but are poised to #BuildBackBetter? Do you have any tips to share? Drop me a line and let’s make #SmallTalk!
Colleen M. Ryan is an