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About Wendy Smith

I am the author of Give a Little: How Your Small Donations Can Transform Our World, which was released in November 2009. I’ve been working in the nonprofit sector for 20+ years in virtually every programmatic and administrative capacity.  I know a thing or two about giving and nonprofits, and I am passionate about setting the record straight by challenging myths and sharing the real scoop on donors, giving and the nonprofit organizations they support.

You can learn more about me and my book at the book’s website You can also buy your own copy of Give a Little at Barnes and Noble and Borders bookstores as well as many online stores including Amazon, Better Word Books (which donates proceeds from the sale of books on their site to literacy programs around the world) and IndieBound, where you will be directed to an independent bookseller online.

By reading the book, you’ll learn that every year, 75% of all giving in the U.S. comes from individuals and, in 2009, that amounted to $227 billion. Contrary to popular belief, it is everyday citizens who power the nonprofit sector in the U.S. and not foundations, corporations, billionaires, celebrities or the government. You’ll also learn just how much good the affordable giving that comes from households generates, AND how much more could be achieved through additional affordable giving, like meeting the Millennium Development Goals.

The United Nations’ Millennium Development Goals have been in effect since 2000 and are intended to achieveThe Millennium Development Goals a number of crucially important milestones by 2015 that would dramatically change our world, particularly by providing opportunities to the poorest billion people around the world.  While we are rapidly approaching the deadline, the world is falling behind in its progress due to inadequate funding.  Wealthy nations around the world pledged to give 0.7% of their gross national incomes (that’s 7¢ of every $100) to fund projects working toward the goals; however, only 5 countries (Norway, Sweden, Luxembourg, Denmark and the Netherlands) have ever met (and exceeded) the 0.7% goal and most are contributing far less than the pledge.  The U.S. is in the bottom 5 at approximately 0.2% per year.

Here’s the secret: Research shows that if every person living in the world’s 33 wealthiest nations made a single annual contribution of $20 (or $100 for a family of 5), WE everyday citizens of the world could fill the funding gap and make the MDGs a reality!  The positive rippling effects of achieving the MDGs would touch every single one of us.

Together with thousands of Give a Little facebook fans, we’re building a movement to inform, inspire and empower everyday (i.e., non-wealthy) donors by spreading the truth about the magnitude and power of their giving. Join the movement by following and adding to the conversation on facebook!

  • Give a Little book cover

    Proof of the power of affordable giving shared in stories and statistics.

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