BFR often talks about meaningful donations, but what do we actually mean when we say this? The dominant narrative in fundraising is often, “How much can you give?” While it is important for organizations to raise money, only asking the question “how much” can create a dynamic where those with more financial means become more important. This narrative works to reinforce many of the systemic inequalities that BFR works to dismantle.
This is why it is much more important for us to look for a meaningful donation. A meaningful donation is made by comparing your donation to your own capacity and skills, not to other people’s donations. $5 and $500 can mean very different things to different people. We believe that a meaningful donation is something that will feel good and important to give, but also something that will not break you or stress you out. It’s important for everyone to come up with this number for themselves.
If it is difficult to determine what is a meaningful gift for yourself don’t worry. This approach to giving is unique and may be unfamiliar. To help you with figuring out what is a meaningful gift, here are some guiding questions
- What is the biggest contribution you’ve made in the past?
- How did that feel?
- How do you prioritize in relation to what you spend on other expenses?
- What amount would make you feel really invested in this project?
- What amount would make you feel proud to tell people? Or the person asking?
- What amount would be responsible and safe for you?
Additionally, we recognize that money is only one form of giving that is available, and often people have skills and resources that greatly outvalue the financial resources that they have available. This is why BFR not only seeks financial donations from individuals who share our dream of a less wasteful and more just food system, but we also look to utilize whatever unique and valuable skills individuals may have at their disposal.