WiserGiving offers valuable tools and advice that you can use to make informed philanthropy decisions.

What is Your WiserGiving Style?

How do you like to solve problems? How does this influence your approach to philanthropy? Which friends have the same WiserGiving Style? Find out now by taking the WiserGiving Style Quiz℠.

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WiserGiving Styles

Building Movements

Direct Services

Making Change Stick

Increasing Effectiveness

Public Policy

Research and Big Ideas

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WiserGiving Style
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WiserGiving Style

Building Movements

Building Movements efforts inspire and support people to take action, together, to achieve deep and lasting social, cultural or political change. Activities often include grassroots organizing, media campaigns, and social action. Examples include: Occupy Wall Street, Anti-Bullying campaigns, Pro-Choice, and the Tea Party.

Direct Services

Direct Service initiatives deliver direct assistance to individuals, one person at a time. Sometimes services are aimed at emergency relief needs (e.g. natural disasters such as Hurricane Katrina) and other times at more chronic problems (e.g. alleviating hunger). Direct Services help individuals get what they need to survive, and then to acquire a sense of personal well-being and empowerment. In turn, these individuals can influence and change the lives of others around them.

Making Change Stick

Making Change Stick champions support organizations that are the watch-dogs and protectors of social change issues. These organizations monitor policies and practices in order to defend and protect human, social and civil rights where there is enduring opposition or controversy. People with this problem-solving style tend to be deeply concerned about specific issues or may have strong ideological points of view. Examples of Making Change Stick organizations include AARP, NAACP, National Council of La Raza, Sierra Club and NARAL. These organizations generally monitor legislation, court rulings, and public policy in order to ensure that their issues and positions of interest continue to be protected.

Increasing Effectiveness

Increasing Effectiveness strategies strengthen organizations and develop leaders who work for the social good as a powerful way to accelerate and sustain positive change. Increasing Effectiveness efforts aim to increase an organization's long term sustainability and impact by sharpening strategic planning capabilities, improving efficiency, building capacity, and/or scaling services. Examples include leadership development programs, developing best practices, implementing technology improvements, strategic planning, and scaling-up to expand or open new service outlets.

Public Policy

Public Policy is a strategic approach that creates broad-scale assistance or change by creating, amending, or repealing laws to reflect desired governing principles and funding priorities. Public policy aims to change how things are done systemically for entire classes of people. Examples include passing state laws to permit same-sex marriage, mandating safety seats for children age 8 and younger, and health care reform. Some examples of organizations that make public policy a centerpiece of their work include AARP, ACLU, Human Rights Campaign, and Mothers Against Drunk Driving.

Research and Big Ideas

Research and Big Ideas refers to creating different ways of thinking about problems and developing new and effective solutions by investing in research and development. It often includes furthering the knowledge base around an issue, in order to reframe or give new meaning to the issue. By viewing the issues differently, better strategies can often be developed. An example is reframing the poor state of education as a national security issue, where the need to build intellectual capital is viewed as a key driver of economic prosperity and foreign independence, which in turn safeguard our national security.

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