My Opinion: Giving is something that must come from within

Giving is one of the most personal financial decisions in our lives. First, there is the choice whether to give at all. Then, if you decide to give, there is a wide range of ways to do it, from supporting formal, organized charities to simply finding people within your personal sphere who can use a hand.

Larry Bakerjian
Larry Bakerjian, CFP®, LB Asset Strategies

Giving is something that comes from within. It cannot and, in my opinion, should not be dictated to us by others.

A lot of us struggled when we were young.

Meeting our own financial obligations was a challenge and even if our intentions were good, the means to help others either simply weren’t there or were limited.

Today, we may find ourselves in a different place financially, which may put the idea of giving on our radar screen. When you do find yourself in the position to help others, the question becomes, who?

For years, I did not contribute to organized charities. Not wanting to send my money somewhere so that the head of an organization could ride in limousines and dine at the fine restaurants, I confined my charitable efforts to helping local individuals and families, many whom I determined had a real need.

Two charities have caught my attention.

Recently, my approach has changed. I’m a great fan of the television show 60 Minutes. In 2008 and again in 2011, 60 Minutes highlighted two charities that have grabbed me in a personal way:

I am not associated in any way with either organization. However, based on what I learned about them from 60 Minutes and my experience since, I believe each embodies what a charity should be. The 60 Minutes profiles on each are profoundly moving. Why not watch the episodes (each 13 minutes in length), and learn more about each organization? You can do so by clicking on the charity links above.