One of the basic tenets of a sound approach to initial philanthropy is maximizing the impact of your financial gifts. The easiest way to do this is to give when you know your gift will be matched; a guaranteed immediate 100 percent return on your generosity. Many companies will double the impact of your charitable donations on a dollar-for-dollar basis.
But what if there were a way to have four times the impact? To donate $25 and do $100 worth of good? It's not a scenario I've seen often, but it exists right now. And you get to do so with an organization that has a life-changing, "right now" effect (click here for the story of how Tran Van Truan's family has a markedly different view of their future thanks to Heifer).
I've highlighted Heifer in the past, but right now is the best opportunity to give through them that I have ever seen. And depending upon your employer, you could see an immediate, incredible 300 percent bonus added to your base donation.
"Half of farmers in the Mekong Delta Region live on less than $1 a day. The families in this area struggle with limited land for production, illiteracy, unemployment and lack of clean water and sanitation. As a result, the child malnutrition rate is very high – causing stunted growth and a wide range of diseases. Malnutrition is intricately linked with poverty and cognitive development of children, decreasing childhood malnutrition in poor farmers' households is an urgent aspect in the poverty-ending mission of Heifer's work.
Through a special Heifer International matching project, we hope to help more than 4,300 households in the poorest parts of the Mekong Delta region gain self-reliance by providing them with a cow, small animals and extensive training so they can maximize their income from their small farms.
Because they have such confidence in our work, the Vietnamese government is offering to match more than $765,000 if we can raise an equal amount from our donors. That means every dollar you contribute to Heifer today will have twice the impact, but we must raise a total of $1.3 million to fully fund this important project. Please help us seize this opportunity to help so many struggling families by making the most generous gift you possibly can."
So in this manner your gift will be doubled. However, if your employer is among the over 13,000 that match donations to Heifer (and most major local employers are), their identical matching donation will also be matched by the Vietnamese government. The best sort of opportunism: your $25 triggers three separate in-kind donations for a total impact of $100. Powerful math, powerful potential to improve the standard of living for untold families in need.