Give Back



This course is not designed to convince you that you should give to other people.  This course is designed to teach you how to go about getting involved with existing organizations or how to start and structure your own organization that will focus on giving something back to the world and those in it and of course there is a hefty section on tax write-offs.

The single most trans-formative aspect of your life is when you give back!

In the past several years of researching how best to go about structuring this course we learned that an overwhelming majority of people would love to spend a percentage of their time and money on giving back to things that they are passionate about.  The number one excuse they give is that they don’t have time.  However, we found that the number one reason people do not take the first step in starting or joining charitable organizations is because they do not know how to get started and they are fearful that their contribution will not be significant enough.

This reminds me of the starfish story that goes something like this.  Once upon a time, there was an old man who had a habit of walking on the beach every morning.  Early one morning, he was walking along the shore after a big storm had passed and found the vast beach littered with starfish as far as the eye could see, stretching in both directions.

Off in the distance, the old man noticed a small boy approaching.  The boy was feverishly picking up starfish and throwing them as far as he could back into the ocean.  As the old man approached the boy the man called out, “Good morning!  May I ask what it is that you are doing?”

The young boy paused, looked up, and replied “Throwing starfish into the ocean. The tide has washed them up onto the beach and they can’t return to the sea by themselves,” the boy replied. “When the sun gets high, they will die, unless I throw them back into the water.”

The old man replied, “But there must be tens of thousands of starfish on this beach. I’m afraid you won’t really be able to make much of a difference.”

The boy bent down, picked up yet another starfish and threw it as far as he could into the ocean. Then he turned, smiled and said, “It made a difference to that one!”  Adapted from The Star Thrower, by Loren Eiseley (1907 – 1977)

The obvious point of the story and the entire purpose of this course is that even if your efforts only affect one person, it will be a big deal to that person.