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Are you a philanthropist? We’re guessing the answer is yes.

The word philanthropy means to love others, and a philanthropist puts that into action. Too often we don’t see ourselves as philanthropists, and at the Foundation, we think it’s time for all of us to reclaim that title. Because a student organizing a book drive, a grandparent tithing to their church, a young professional making a donation to a local shelter, a passionate advocate coordinating outreach – are all philanthropists. It takes everyone to make this community thrive.

We want to hear from you!

If you are, or know someone who is, a philanthropist by definition – giving back to our community through time, talent, treasure, or other ways – help us reclaim this word and highlight the important work you are doing in our region. Submit a story right here, and let us lift up the love you are spreading! These stories will be used on our social channels leading up to, and at What Matters 2020, so that our entire community can celebrate together the impact you are making, and bring awareness to the causes you care about.

Need some prompts?

Ready? Upload a story here!

Once you’ve uploaded your story, don’t forget to look for it on our Facebook and Twitter page and share it with our hashtags too! We will update this page regularly. #iamaphilanthropist #whatmatters2020

Philanthropist Stories from YOU

Catherina Gomes, a social impact entrepreneur and a local philanthropist,  started a company called 700 Rivers which impacts women’s lives on a global scale. Their mission is to empower women through fair work and living wages, and to protect our planet through sustainable products and design. Her organization, 700 Rivers, partners with a fair-trade organization in Bangladesh that helps women who have escaped abuse to start over by providing mental health support, a community of women that have similar backgrounds and understand each other, and teach them new job skills. 700 Rivers is directly working with our fair-trade partners to employ these amazing artisans and create all-natural soaps.

We launched 700 Rivers’ first soap collection in mid-December and have already almost sold out of our initial order! To share the wealth (literally) and positive impact, her organization took a portion of their profits and made a donation to the local non-profit Dress for Success Triangle NC to help local women get jobs to support themselves. It is important to Catherina to positively impact and support women’s lives both in her local community and across the world. She plans to continue to donate a portion of the profits to non-profits that match their values every quarter. Submitted 01/05/2020


Tina Bailey: “There’s NOTHING more impactful than the voice of a survivor! Not only does it allow them to regain their power but it propels others to do the same. Tina uses her voice to speak for women all over the Triangle. Volunteering with organizations like InterAct, Dress for Success and RAIN is just the beginning. She has started her own movement entitled #sistertalk to provide women with resources and support to take back their power and learn to thrive after trauma.” Submitted 11/20/19


Jake Buckingham donates the $10 he receives in his stocking each Christmas to a local nonprofit that he thinks is most in need each year. A tradition passed down through his family, he has continued it on for the good of the community. Submitted 11/20/19


Julia Da Silva: “In 2011, I was sexually assaulted by a student at UNC-Chapel Hill. In search of support and a desire to create change in my community, I started volunteering at the Orange County Rape Crisis Center as the Development Intern, responsible for procuring items for the Center’s largest fundraiser of the year–the annual holiday auction. Nine auctions later, I am now Board President of the Center and giving all I can to the organization that provided a safe and supportive space for healing and that ultimately influenced my career path in the nonprofit sector.” Submitted 11/20/19