Give to the Max Day 2015

I'm not the only one conflicted about Give to the Max Day, as I can tell from emails and posts from my colleagues. It's a confusing day, where you want to participate in the festival-like atmosphere, while making sure your donors understand, really understand, how much they mean to you and how that relationship is important.

This year it's earlier than usual — before the 15th of the month for the first time — and people aren't ready, or thinking about end of the year giving. And there's a lot of confusion about the site and how to give and fees and the like.

And I'm distracted by our own needs around here: a girl with tricky new orthodontia, a house that has to be finished, a dog (not ours) that needs a home, and other deadlines.

Still, I think it's important to think about giving and why you support the things that are important to you. Today's a good day to do that, because it's fun and easy and you'll feel good participating in the carnival. But any day is good. If it's easy to give online, do that — or your gift will have more impact (because no fees!) if you send a check directly.

I have a bizillion clients and suggestions:
IFP Minnesota (who doesn't love film?)
Circus Juventas (it's the closest thing to running away with the circus)
Mental Health MN (because we have all had mental health issues at some point)
KidsPark (for cooperative flexible childcare)
The Caux Round Table (a moral capitalism think tank, right here in MN)
Mixed Precipitation (it's picnic, it's opera, it's both)
Theatre Novi Most (Patrick sits on the board but has no time to pimp it today)
Skewed Visions (site specific awesome work)
Sounds of Hope (world peace through music)
Summit Ave Residential Preservation Assn (preservation)

and many more, if you have money burning a hole in your pocket.

But honestly, if you have just a few dollars to spare for a new to you organization, I would actually point you to my dad's first-time pitch, which I thought was heartfelt and amazing:
Just learned that since Medtronics’ move to Ireland, their help in funding The Bakken Museum has taken a big nosedive. As a result, the museum is launching an internal campaign to celebrate the museum’s 40th birthday. I know that GiveMN is coming up next week and that you often encourage your twitter mates to select local causes for donations. Would you consider suggesting The Bakken as one of those choices. An anonymous benefactor has pledged a match of up to $40,000 for all donations received by Dec. 10. I donated $40.00 already to qualify for the matching gift. I would hate to see the museum have to cut back on some of its programs. Thanks for your consideration.
Love, your father
So my vote for someplace extra to throw a $10 donation today and feel really good about yourself? The Bakken.


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