Alicia Holmes has the distinction of being our first Give Together member who was completely new to Jolkona. Not only had she never donated through Jolkona.org before, but she doesn’t know anyone affiliated with us, she’s never attended one of our events, and she lives all the way across the country…
We couldn’t wait to hear her story!
Occupation: Senior advisor for a healthcare and pharmacy innovation company
How did you hear about Jolkona, and what made you want to contribute?
I saw an article [on LinkedIn
] that described Jolkona’s philosophy and contribution model. The type of projects that Jolkona was targeting — small scale, material impact, varying causes — resonated with me. I like knowing that I didn’t just contribute X dollars to a particular city or country; I know that I helped purchase books for a local school or provide job-training for young women.
Jolkona strikes me as fresh and innovative. I was floored when I received an email from an actual person, Nicole, after signing up for Give Together online. No “do not reply — distribution only” emails. Real people who care about their work and the causes they support are the people behind this organization.
How did you hear about Give Together, and what inspired you to join?
After reading about the company, I learned more about Give Together on Jolkona’s website. It’s a practical, results driven program where you’re actually engaged in the act of giving and can witness the collective result as more people join the cause. It isn’t just an anonymous donation on a website.
How would you define “philanthropist?”
I think the term philanthropist sounds so formal that most people wouldn’t describe themselves as such, unless you actually are Bill or Melinda Gates. But in my mind, philanthrophy only requires that you look outside of yourself, your situation, and try to make a positive impact on humanity. There are many more philathropists walking around this world than we think.
What other causes do you support, and what kind of causes would you like to support in the future?
Veterans organizations have always been important to my family, as I come from a long line of service men and women. My father is a former Marine and Vietnam veteran, and in their retirement, my parents have started a non-profit to provide respite for soldiers and their families. I guess I take a lot of cues from them.
Healthcare (especially nutrition and prevention) and education are at the top of my list as well. Those are just a few areas where you can do more than relieve an immediate need. You can support the development of skills that will be useful for a lifetime (and hopefully passed on to later generations). Small contributions are magnified in that way.
What would you say to encourage others to donate to projects through Jolkona or elsewhere?
If you want to make an impact, if you want to know where and how your dollars are being used to help others and make the world a little more liveable, this is where you start.
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