God's Plan: What Can You Give To Be A Philanthropist Like Drake?
"Can you be a philanthropist with student debt, a measly savings account and questionable spending habits?"
Drake is an incredibly famous rapper who gave away almost a million dollars to unsuspecting shoppers, families and college students in Miami in his music video for "God’s Plan." In the clip, his style of giving probably fits the mold of what you consider a philanthropist, someone with a lot of money to give away. But what about you? Can you be a philanthropist with student debt, a measly savings account and questionable spending habits?
Before I answer with a rhetorical "yes," let’s define philanthropist outside of the usual image that comes to mind when we hear the word. According to Merriam-Webster’s dictionary, a philanthropist is one who makes an active effort to promote human welfare. Active effort sounds a lot different than giving away wads of cash. And let’s not overlook the result of a given action towards meaningful social change. So, now we know that money can be part of being a philanthropist, but it’s not the only component. We can expand on what resources count as philanthropic as long someone’s life improves.
Now, let’s get back to bae … I mean, Drake. Although there are mixed feelings about him promoting his generosity, he pushed beyond his initial investment to challenge to his fans to “bring another human being some joy,” no matter how small the task. In other words, he asks you to take action and make someone feel good.
You’re probably thinking about what “good” counts as philanthropy. The truth is, no matter if you’re volunteering or donating $10,000, it’s hard to measure the direct impact of your investment. That’s why when giving, no matter the gifted medium (your time, talent or money), it’s important to research the cause you’re looking to support. This way, you understand the problem and what’s required to shift towards a better future.
Remember how much joy it brought these kids to see Black Panther for free? If you have as much as $10 to spare, you could do the same. Or, if you want to up your game, you could research the importance of exposing kids to STEM fields to discover how local and national organizations are approaching the opportunity. From there, you can choose how you’d like to be involved as a philanthropist.
I know Drake didn’t have all of this in mind when he posted his challenge on Instagram, but he did expand upon how we can think of improving the people and communities around us. Now, I hope you can see how you can envision and become a philanthropist yourself!