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This weekend marks the start of what is typically called the “Season of Giving.” It’s the first weekend where we, as a North American society, start to reflect back on the year and look at our impending tax bills and decide how much to give and to which charities.

 

We have all heard the phrases shared by the organizations that solicit us -

“A flat gift is a decreased gift as a result of inflation.”

“You can donate securities and receive additional tax credits so it is like your donation only costs you half of much.”

“If you donate a life insurance policy now, you can write off your premiums against your taxes.”

 

All of these comments speak to the fact that we have incentivized giving to the point of making it purely a financial planning and wealth management transaction.  What if, at this point in time, we started to not just look at our charitable activities as a way to manage our taxes, but also as a way to really illicit change in our communities?

And the money keeps on rolling... 

 

Every month Ray Stockford, Systems Analyst for Dexterity Ventures Inc., shares the latest tech updates to the Place2Give website and the technology solutions offered through Dexterity Ventures.

 
It has been a busy September here at DVI. The Tech Team has been closing in on the finish line for some of the things I have been chatting about over the last few months. Here is a quick rundown of what has been going on:

Philanthropy - the Greek word meaning the love of humankind.  Over time we have taken this concept and made it into a financial transaction with tax credits and incentives to do what we should do naturally – love each other.

Every month Ray Stockford, Systems Analyst for Dexterity Ventures Inc., shares the latest tech updates to the Place2Give website and the technology solutions offered through Dexterity Ventures.

We've been covering a lot of ground this month; we launched a new Motif Giving fund, GROW: The Whistler Motif Giving Fund, and have done some additional updates to our GIVE-API (bug fixes and search enhancements).

Today I said to goodbye to my friend, my mentor, my cousin and my fellow Rotarian - Larry Ryder.  It has been an emotional morning, and as I write this post I am considering what I share about one of Calgary's and Alberta's business and community leaders.

Lately, I have been writing and speaking on legacy planning and how it isn't about your "mother's pearls, but rather her pearls of wisdom," as one friend told me.  Larry shared a number of pearls with me, as he did with the other business owners and community leaders and politicians. I could write about what he taught with regards to business and running my company, or what he thought about our mayors (depending on the year... heck depending on the day!), or how he convinced me to buy an Alberta PC Party membership.  But all of that seems rather irrelevant now.  

What I want to share about Larry Ryder is what he taught me about commitment to community engagement.

My opinion on the #ALSIceBucket campaign has been pretty strong.  In a piece I wrote for the Calgary Herald and other posts about slacktivism campaigns, I talk about the ripple effect of giving.  This is no different, except for this time the Ice Bucket Challenge was given to me.

This week I am attending the Grow Conference in Whistler, BC.  The opening presenter, Brian Solis asked the audience – what is at the heart of your business?  The reason being, companies that focus on the social aspects of how they operate in the world are more successful than companies that only focus on the profit. Brian pointed out that innovation and disruption are mutually exclusive, but that new innovation can disrupt a market, just like disruption can lead to innovation.

Last June, Shared Value Initiative released the report called “Banking on Shared Value: How Banks Profit by Rethinking Their Purpose.” In this study, industry leaders explore ways for banks to create shared value, which happens when they yield business returns through their efforts to contribute to the health of the communities around them.

Banks are entering an age of change, where they have an opportunity to emerge from the financial crisis with a new outlook and strategy on how they can serve society. The report features the many different ways that leading financial institutions have embraced this new way of thinking – creating shared value and going beyond the smaller scale corporate philanthropy and CSR efforts of the past.

Every month Ray Stockford, Systems Analyst for Dexterity Ventures Inc., shares the latest tech updates to the Place2Give website and the technology solutions offered through Dexterity Ventures.

It’s here: We have fully launched DexterityVentures.com, which provides information about our technology products and consulting services, and also acts as a portal to all of our other offerings.

The big news: We beta launched myPlace2Give.com, a brand new tech offering from DVI. With MyPlace2Give you can create your own MicroFoundation containing a collection of your favourite charities. You assign each charity a percentage of the donations, weighting them according to what you care most about.

Every month Ray Stockford, Systems Analyst for Place2Give, shares the latest tech updates to the Place2Give website and the technology solutions offered through Dexterity Ventures.

New products, new websites, and updates to system backend

Place2Give's 'Easy Donate' button: This new option will allow businesses, individuals and charities to easily insert a button into their website to facilitate donations to their favourite organization(s) directly from their own site.

Need: Cute Firemen - Calgary's response to the floodIt’s the first anniversary of the Southern Alberta Flood and we have been collecting the update stories on how our community has supported some of the front-line charities during and after the crisis.  Things have settled down, and organizations are getting back on their feet; we now have the space to look back and see what we learned and what we could have done differently during this crisis. (Photo credit: http://nothingbythebook.com/category/longer-essays)