As we enter the season of giving, one of the best ways to give is by becoming a part of involvement philanthropy.
This growing trend has captured the energies of thousands of corporate professionals, who are not only writing checks, but also becoming personally involved in transforming the lives of inner-city youth. In the process, they are doing new things, having new experiences, and growing themselves alongside the youth.
In Dallas last week, I spoke with corporate executives from the Truman Arnold Companies, Hunt Consolidated and EY who practiced involvement philanthropy last summer, when they sponsored their first summer intern, as part of the All Stars’ Development School for Youth (DSY). To a person, they spoke passionately about not only what the young person had accomplished, but also how deeply they had been personally touched by this involvement.
Founded 20 years ago, the DSY is a program that partners with the business community to help young people, ages 16 to 21, create a professional performance by leading development workshops and providing paid summer internships at their companies.
“Business leaders are finding that when they interact with the young people of DSY, it energizes the company. People involved with DSY are getting as much out of the experience as they are giving,” commented Hunter Hunt, CEO of Hunt Consolidated.
This enthusiasm is confirmed by our recent survey of corporate professionals who participated in DSY. 91.4% of people surveyed said they were likely or very likely to recommend the DSY program to their colleagues or to other companies.
Today, 180 companies across America are participating in involvement philanthropy through the DSY, including 90 new corporate partners this year alone. Involvement philanthropy is catching on and spreading!
Involvement philanthropy is very personal: you experience the impact first-hand. Both young people and the corporate executives come home at the end of the day and share these direct hands-on experiences with their families and friends. This changes how people living in poor communities experience corporations, as well as how corporate professionals experience inner-city teenagers.
So as we enter the season of giving, and in advance of #GivingTuesday on December 1st – a global day dedicated to giving back – I urge you to become a part of involvement philanthropy. At All Stars we celebrate giving back every day, it’s not just once a year; and we know that it takes more than presents, it takes your “presence”. Our young people don’t just need your financial support, they need you at their side!