Learnings from Working in a Rural Community

Since the 2016 election, Americans have suddenly woken up to the importance of “rural America.” Academics are looking to better understand and study populations, reporters are featuring countless stories on people living in rural areas and governments are looking to increase support to these areas.  The populist upsurge forced our attention away from the heavily […]

Our Experience with the Social Innovation Forum

Over the past year, SmarterGive’s has worked with the Gisela B Hogan Foundation to develop a new strategy focused on early childhood. For our first grant in this new space we sponsored a track, “Addressing Adversity in Early Childhood” at Boston’s Social Innovation Forum, a local non-profit incubator and capacity builder.  Early childhood is a new […]

Less is More When it Comes to Philanthropy

If you have $100 to give, do you give it to one organization or divide it among five?  Do you give it all at once or over time? Recently, I have noticed a trend among many of my clients in the number of organizations they support and the amounts they provide in financial support.  Each […]

Catalyzing Impact With the Rigor of Business

Philanthropy has changed dramatically over the past fifteen to twenty years. What is fundamentally different, is that donors and innovators are now taking best practices from the private sector and applying them to the social sector.  They are applying a level of business rigor to the social sector that was previously unprecedented. This application has led […]

Identifying High Impact Non-Profits


In the United States, there are more than 1.5 million registered non-profits. The number is overwhelming, and it means as a donor, you have to weed through a lot of organizations to determine where to give.   Most donors want to support high performing organizations, but it is difficult to assess the performance of an organization […]

Women in Philanthropy: How Big is the Problem Really?

After I wrote my last blog voicing my concerns that the social sector is missing an opportunity because women are not fully engaged in philanthropy, I had to wonder how big this problem this really is. In an age when women are receiving more advanced degrees than men, leading companies and organizations, and even running for […]

By |June 23rd, 2015|Uncategorized, Women in Philanthropy|53 Comments

Calling All Women to Philanthropy: We Can Do It!

During World War II, millions of American women were called to action; the war effort needed them to fill traditionally male dominated roles in factories and shipyards.  The effort provided women the opportunity to see they could do men’s work and laid the groundwork for a women’s social movement that is still on-going today.  Now […]

By |May 21st, 2015|Women in Philanthropy|0 Comments

How to Support Relief Efforts in Nepal

This past weekend, Nepal was devastated by a massive earthquake that killed thousands—and the number is growing. In addition to the huge loss of life, the earthquake also crushed buildings and infrastructure, shut down travel, and cut people off from food and water.  All this in a nation that was already at the bottom of […]

By |April 28th, 2015|High Impact Philanthropy|0 Comments

The Highly Leveraged Philanthropic Dollar

Do you know that not all dollars that non-profits receive are equal?  In fact, where dollars in the social sector come from is actually quite important.  Private philanthropic dollars are unique and provide a distinctive opportunity for leverage when philanthropists take advance of this opportunity.

The majority of social sector activities are funded by two sources, […]

The Social Impact Side of Impact Investing

This morning, I went to a panel presentation on impact investing, and it was actually the fourth such panel put on by the financial services community I have been to over the last few months.  Given the obvious popularity of the topic, it is clear there is interest and a yearning from financial service providers […]

By |April 14th, 2015|Impact Investing|2 Comments