At Heartland Family Service, we practice and cultivate a Culture of Philanthropy on a daily basis both internally and externally. But, how exactly is a Culture of Philanthropy defined?
With respect to our organization, the most applicable definition of “culture” from Merriam-Webster is: “The set of shared attitudes, values, goals, and practices that characterizes an institution or organization.”
As for “philanthropy,” it is defined as both of the following:
- Goodwill to fellow members of the human race; especially: active effort to promote human welfare
- An act or gift done or made for humanitarian purposes; or an organization distributing or supported by funds set aside for humanitarian purposes
However, it is important to remember that philanthropy is not solely focused on fundraising.
Why is a Culture of Philanthropy so important?
Research shows that an organization’s culture dramatically influences its effectiveness. Culture is pervasive and affects all areas of an organization, including fund development. A Culture of Philanthropy is especially important because it is part of our agency’s mission – to strengthen individuals and families in our community through education, counseling, and support services. Last year, our agency fulfilled its mission by helping to improve the lives of more than 52,000 individuals in our community through services provided within our more than 50 programs.
As staff members of Heartland Family Service, we are responsible for understanding and promoting our Culture of Philanthropy and for serving as philanthropic ambassadors within our agency and in the community. Program staff, especially those in direct contact with clients and the community, can help foster relationships on behalf of and in support of Heartland Family Service. This means being sensitive to and aware of clients and community members, providing them with high-quality service and key resources, and paying attention to their interests to cultivate connections with our agency’s endeavors.
We have built a wonderful, diverse, and engaging team of people who exemplify our Culture of Philanthropy at Heartland Family Service, and we could not have done it without each of you. Thank you for all your efforts and hard work!