OVERT Generosity

Week 1: Generosity

As part of this weeks challenge on Generosity I have asked that you guys investigate three differing forms of Generosity. Overt Generosity, Situational Generosity and True Sharing. To prove to you that my words are not just wind, I will also be participating in this challenge and posting some examples for you guys to hopefully help get you inspired.

Today I will discuss Overt Generosity, which in my opinion is the most common and obvious form. It comes from acts that we initiate and plan before hand. It happens when we are feeling Generous and wish to spread Love around us. But it is not the only form of Generosity, as we shall see.

To help illustrate what it is I feel Overt Generosity to be, I considered using the Alternate Economy as an example. Last week I went to the local bee keeping supply store (Zurcher Honey) and made a down payment for a beehive for the new Experimental Farm. I deposited $200 from my birthday money and should be picking it up tomorrow and paying the final $445 of the bill. I feel a little weird using this example, however, as it is a charity that I created. It is kind of like giving to myself… which doesn’t seem especially Generous. I know, the funds raised from the beehive will not be going to me personally, they will also be going back to the Alternate Economy, and yet still I feel that this is not quite the example I am searching for.

I also considered using the project that I am helping my good friend Linda with as an example. She is in the process of expanding her small home business to the internet and I have offered to create a site with her at no charge. We have worked on it a couple of times together and I did a few hours work on it this week. I still feel that this is not the greatest example, because it is something I agreed to do some time ago, and still haven’t finished, even though it probably could be done by now. Although it is Generous, it was not inspired by this challenge and so it doesn’t seem quite right.

In the end, these examples are projects that I am already doing. This challenge is about looking for new ways to be generous. Since I still have a little birthday money left, I decided to spend it on a charity that I quite like but have neglected to donate to in over 3 years, Heifer.org.

I couldn’t resist donating a package of bees, to a family in need, since I just bought a beehive for the Alternate Economy. But I also wanted to donate some money towards the Sustainable Community Development Project in India.

Here is a brief synopsis of the project, as found on their website:

Empowering the world’s women to transform their lives is the key to ending hunger and poverty. In western India, Heifer is working against harsh weather conditions – the area has witnessed more than 40 droughts in 100 years, and even harsher living conditions because of traditional practices and the persistence of the caste systems. Heifer is working to change the lives and attitudes of 240 families by providing goats, training in Heifer’s 12 Cornerstones, including Gender and Family Focus, improved animal management, kitchen gardening and fodder production, and more. You can join us in making a difference in the lives by providing animals and training to Heifer India project participants.

I feel like for this week, my Overt act of Generosity will be my donation to help impoverished families in India. I donated $150 to this project and feel that if anyone is looking for an Overt act of Generosity for this week, Heifer.org is a good one. Please take the time to look at their website. You can donate as little as $10 or much as you wish and you can make donations via Paypal.

Overt Generosity is the easy one, so that is why I started with this one. There are literally millions of charities and families in need that could benefit from our help. We can donate money, or time, or clothing, or food. But it requires we make an effort. Overt Generosity is easy to produce, yet easy to forget about. We should be able to create a long list of things we are being Overtly Generous about in our lives. And if the list does not satisfy us, we should continue to add to it.