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Philanthropy Activity: Being A Philanthropist

Have students write a sentence or two about what they think “philanthropy” means. Discuss their definitions as a class and then come up with a final class definition. (One or two students can check the definition in a dictionary.) Discuss with students who should be responsible for philanthropy – citizens, families, organizations, communities, state/local governments, national government.

Divide students into groups and have them brainstorm some philanthropic needs in their own neighborhoods, communities, towns, or states. Distribute Handout A: What Is Being Done? Students should work with a group to determine what is currently being done about the need and what they could do to help fill the need. After the groups have completed Handout A, ask them set goals for their philanthropy project on Handout B: Setting Short-Term and Long Term Goals.

Depending on time, you can have the students try to fulfill the community philanthropic need or you can discuss the needs in class and some possible plans for fulfillment. Finally, have students complete Handout C: Reflection to reflect on what they have learned about philanthropy and the actors involved in philanthropic fulfillment.