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Givers Resources 3min read

The Difference Between Charity vs Philanthropy

Charity and philanthropy are often intertwined, but do you know the difference between these two types of giving?

phi•lan•thro•py: noun – the desire to promote the welfare of others expressed especially by the generous donation of money to good causes.

Philanthropy has a reputation for being exclusive to the wealthy, but that’s not true. The founder and CEO of Givelify says “everyone is a philanthropist.” Philanthropists uncover the causes of societal issues and solve them with a variety of resources.

char•i•ty: noun – an organization set up to provide help and raise money for those in need.

Charity is often the term most people identify with when they donate their time, talent, or treasure. Charitable organizations are nonprofits that usually raise money or solicit volunteers to help those in need.

When giving to charity, most people agree that “anything helps” whether it be loose change in your pocket or volunteering an hour.

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How charity and philanthropy work together

In practice, philanthropy and charity support the betterment of society through giving. How they do this is different, and neither course of action is better than the other.

However, some people may find charitable giving to be more accessible than philanthropic giving. Giving to charity can make us feel good about our giving because we can see the impact right away.

Giving food to the hungry, money to the less fortunate, and providing shelter to the homeless provides instant gratification for the recipient of the gift and the giver.

Philanthropy on the other hand takes a behind-the-scenes approach to ending world hunger, fostering equality, and housing the homeless. We often don’t see the fruits of our labor instantly when we give this way.

However, philanthropic giving helps make our charitable giving even more meaningful. Giving a few dollars to someone who needs the money might help them get transportation to a center that provides resources funded by philanthropic efforts.

The differences between charity vs philanthropy are striking but they do go hand-in-hand. Many of us do both without making a distinction between the two.

Each type of giving is necessary for the other to do its best work. Regardless of which you identify with more, giving is about good people doing good things for other good people.

Givelify helps over a quarter-million people do more good each time they pick up their phone. Interested in changing the world one simple joyful gift at a time? Let’s get started! Start your journey of giving by signing up for Givelify.

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About the Author

Basha Coleman