Why I Give: A Note from the President

David UnselfieEvery now and then we are propelled to reflect on our giving; including how, when, where and why we give. At YVC, the giving that we reflect on most commonly is the generosity of our youth, who contribute thousands of hours of their time to communities across the country every year.

But then days like Thanksgiving – and especially Giving Tuesday, which is just around the corner – remind me that I, too, give. Like the youth, I give of my time through my service in the nonprofit sector. Unlike the youth, however, I also have income to give.

While money may seem like a crass subject to some, it is the lifeblood of the nonprofits that serve our communities. Without the monetary support of people like you and me, more families would go hungry, more people would suffer harsh Midwestern winters on the street, and more youth would struggle to realize their potential.

My preference has long been to give to smaller, grassroots organizations where I can really see the difference my money is making. These types of places include start-ups, church-related mission works to help the poor internationally, and – of course – YVC.

Greater Kansas City - MLK Day 2014 - Sunflower House - David (3)For example, when I give at YVC, I can see the difference, whether it’s from giving a larger sum of money to fund the development of a new Affiliate, or giving smaller amounts to support the recruitment of a new Youth Volunteer. $8 a month is all it takes for YVC Headquarters to support a Youth Volunteer, and while this seems insignificantly small to many people, to the youth who benefit from being able to serve, this experience can be life-changing.

I see this same phenomenon occurring in our Youth Volunteers across the country. When they see the impact of their service and the lives they touch by their generosity, they’re inspired, and they continue to give- not tomorrow, not next week, but today.

So this Giving Tuesday, as we celebrate an international day of giving, I invite you to reflect on the role of giving in your life. Why do you give? How do you give? And in what ways does giving back enrich your life and make you who you are?

David Battey is President and Founder of YVC.

Why do you give? Snap an unselfie and share it with the hashtag #LivetoGive. Find more details about unselfies, Giving Tuesday, and how to have your donation matched here.