The donation could save between 20 and 33 lives
Butler Kahn is committed to charitable giving, and we believe it’s especially important to give with your heart and your head.
This year, Butler Kahn is donating $100,000 to GiveWell, a non-profit group that evaluates charitable organizations and identifies opportunities where donated dollars can have the highest impact.
When you give your hard-earned money to make the world a better place – which is a wonderful thing to do – think hard about where the money is going. Smart giving focuses less on the whims of the donor and more on the effect of the donation. When it comes to giving, a little bit of thought goes a long way.
The Make-A-Wish Foundation pursues a wonderful mission of granting the wishes of children with critical or terminal illnesses. The organization sends children to Disney world or arranges meetings with celebrities. Make-A-Wish’s mission pulls at your heart, and appropriately so. The cost of granting each wish, by Make-A-Wish’s estimate, is $11,161.
If you have $12,000 to donate, should you give it to Make-A-Wish?
For a donation of approximately $4,000 to highly-effective charities that distribute anti-malarial medicine, provide insecticidal nets, or offer vitamin supplements in the developing world, you could save a life, according to data-based charity evaluator GiveWell.
Which would you rather do – grant the wish of a child, or save three lives?
The concept of giving thoughtfully, in order to maximize the impact of your dollar, is often called “effective altruism” and was popularized by Dr. Peter Singer’s 2013 TED Talk. Effective altruism means using your head, in addition to your heart.
Each year, Butler Kahn gives away $100,000 in our Giving Project. Our goal is to do the most good possible. We’ve given away $100,000 for three years in a row now, each year and we rely heavily on the recommendations of evaluators GiveWell and The Life You Can Save.
In the past, we have given to the Against Malaria Foundation, Evidence Action, and GiveDirectly, all of which were among GiveWell’s “Top Charities” for that year. This year, for the first time, we’re handing the money off to GiveWell itself. One hundred percent of this year’s donation will go to GiveWell’s Maximum Impact Fund, in which “GiveWell takes zero fees and will apply its judgment to allocate the Maximum Impact Funds among our recommended charities.”
GiveWell wrote to us that “we think Butler Kahn’s $100,000 donation could save between 20 and 33 lives.”
That’s a good feeling. We’d feel even better if some other Georgia law firm matched or upstaged us!
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