In Christmas, gift giving is important. However, it’s also important to take a moment to think about how the spirit of giving can be extended to those who don’t have enough money to afford Christmas. GiveDirectly is a new charity that will take any cash you donate it and give it directly, no strings attached, to extremely poor families in Africa.
While GiveDirectly is very successful, they don’t spend donors’ money on advertising, so they rely on people like me to spread the word about direct giving. GiveDirectly has been thoroughly vetted and is supported by multiple studies and is currently one of the three top recommendations of GiveWell, a very selective independent charity evaluator. Surprisingly, they’ve found that such transfers result in useful spending like buying food, investing in their homes, paying school fees, or increasing their savings. Very few recipients use it on alcohol or tobacco.
Additionally, the foundation Good Ventures has promised to match any donation to GiveDirectly, so any donation you give will be doubled! So far they’ve raised $1.7 million that will be matched dollar-for-dollar by Good Ventures, which translates into over $3 million that will be transferred directly to families living in extreme poverty. However, there’s still 40 days until the end of the matching challenge and $3.3 million in opportunity waiting.
If you’re able to, I encourage you take advantage of this opportunity to double the value of your holiday charitable giving. There’s no way to put into words what that will mean for the recipients.