Friday, July 30, 2010

How Philanthopy, NGO's and BOGO's Might Be Hurting and Helping Africa

We have been touting here various "Buy One Give One" "BOGO" business giving models, as great examples of innovative business philanthropy-business blended with social mission. So when I came across a recent post by R.Todd Johnson:Reflections on Ethiopia,Is Philanthropy Killing Africa?  suggesting that BOGO businesses, like NGO's, are hurting Africa by destroying  local small businesses and squashing entrepreneurism, I needed to investigate the impact of these philanthropic ventures to perhaps defend and justify their purpose.

But first, to support Todd Johnson's view, and I believe he really brings up some good points, I recently heard a story from a friend of mine, a successful entrepreneur, who went down to Bolivia to help revitalize an ailing weaving industry that has been destroyed by donated clothing delivered to these poor regions. He saw indigenous people in the remote areas in the Andes walking around wearing Stanford sweatshirts. One wonders what else has been squashed here.

Yes, there is a point here, but does it always apply? On the philanthropic side, there is this view that people can't even learn to fish, so to speak, while they are sick, hungry, cold, and uneducated. On the impact side, there is plenty evidence that indicates a failure in the delivery and benefits of aid and handouts, not just in Africa, but at a more local level.

This whole question of whether aid is essential to the development of countries, or whether it is killing it, has been debated in much higher circles than I can ever reach. Paul Solman the economics reporter on PBS's Lehrer News Hour did a story: Authors Analyze, Criticize Foreign Aid Agencies in New Books, where he took on this subject with a point and counterpoint between two very highly respected economists and authors, Jeffrey Sachs of Columbia University, and William Easterly of NYU. Although each side used very convincing arguments backed by their research to defend their position while criticising the other, Paul Solman concludes that they both agree on one thing-accountability is essential. I urge anyone interested in understanding the complexity of this issue to read their books and research.

Todd Johnson compared BOGO businesses with NGO's  and used the slightly obscured example of one such company TOMS Shoes that donates shoes to children in Africa as an example of a "well intentioned" but "hurting to a long term sustainable solution"- because, as he puts it:
"First, as long as rural Africans have an opportunity to potentially receive free shoes donated by a U.S. shoe company, why would they want to pay for shoes? Second, as long as rural Africans are unwilling to pay for shoes, how can local African shoemakers hope to have a flourishing local business?"
First of all, the comparison between a business and a NGO makes no sense. Because these businesses have been formed with a double or triple bottom line purpose, they are accountable to their stakeholders: the founders, partners, investors, customers. And with the increasing use of social media and marketing, their impact  becomes, by necessity, more transparent than an NGO's. This changes the game, as the stakeholders can insist that their buy one, give one purchase and donation does no harm.

I first wrote about TOMS shoes well over a year ago, when it was a fledgling social enterprise. So now it seemed it was good time to check on their accountability. Toms Shoes, it turns out, addresses this very question 

From TOMS Shoes:
“Do no harm”. Even in very poor countries, some local shops sell shoes. We work with our partners to ensure that the children receiving our shoes truly could not afford to purchase them on their own, to minimize the negative impact on the local shoe-selling economy. We also work with our partners to make sure children are not experiencing negative stigma as a result of wearing our shoes – sometimes wearing shoes in a community where shoes are rare can actually make a child stand out in a bad way!

Many times children can't attend school barefoot because shoes are a required part of their uniform. If they don't have shoes, they don't go to school. If they don't receive an education, they don't have the opportunity to realize their potential."

Then there is Socks for Happy People, which we profiled here several months ago. For every pair that is bought they give a pair socks to Mongolian street children who often have to endure temperatures as low as -40°C.. AND these donated socks have been made locally in Mongolia from Mongolian camel hair. And they have a wider social mission too: "that of providing inspiration and education to entrepreneurs and consumers".
Why would they want to kill the very thing they are hoping to inspire?

I just recently learned about BOGO light, the solar powered flashlights where one light is donated to an affiliate non-profit for every light purchased. Mark Bent, the founder of BOGO lights had lived and worked in Africa for many years where he saw the urgency in providing sustainable light sources. Aside from these flashlights being very environmental for everyone who owns one, they have a major impact on health, safety and education of women and children, especially in these developing countries. More than likely he also saw the urgency of providing Africans the means to develop their own businesses.

Can giving a child in a impoverished country a solar powered flashlight so they can study at night really "kill Africa"?  Mark Bent, who deeply loves Africa, probably doesn't think so.

And I don't either- until you show me some real analysis.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Fundraising: Even Businesses Have Been Bit With the Philanthropy Bug

Author: Raymond Shell

Is philanthropy the new trend in business? It defiantly seems that way, now more than ever before, companies are looking to participate in the fundraising activities of our communities, churches, and schools. But just how involved are today's businesses willing to get?
This trend towards social responsibility is not completely new for businesses. Bill Gates, founder of Microsoft, is probably as well known for his philanthropic efforts through his charitable organization, the "Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation", as he is for creating the software giant that propelled him to the number one position on the Forbes list of the World's Richest People.
Not one to ever be outdone, the man who at one time held the number two position on that same list of who's –who made a charitable gift of epic proportions. On June 26th, 2006 the sage of Omaha, Warren Buffet, pledged $31 billion to the "Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation." When he donated 85% of his net worth to the charity, he not only doubled the size of the foundation, but he went into the history books for making the single largest charitable donation in history.
More recently, we saw the soft drink mega corporation, Pepsi Corp.; end a 25 year relationship with the NFL (National Football League.) When Pepsi opted to forgo advertising in the 2010 Super Bowl the trend towards business philanthropy was solidified. Instead of purchasing commercial time during the most watched televised event in the world, where a 30 second spot can costs as much as $3 million, Pepsi announced that they would be donating the advertising money to various fundraisers across America during a campaign they named "The Pepsi Refresh Project."
What makes this philanthropy movement so unique is that it is not just the big corporations getting involved. Small, medium, and even Mom and Pop shops are volunteering their time, products and services to help ensure the success of local fundraisers. One of the more popular ways these smaller, and in today's economy- often times struggling, businesses are getting involved is thru donating a portion of your purchase to a specific charity or fundraiser. This creates a situation where everybody wins. The business lives up to its "civic duty" and you get the pride of helping others while purchasing something you needed and were going to buy anyway.
While researching this article I found that even the internet businesses are feeling the need to get involved. One site that I came across, who offers remote computer repair, pledges 10% of your purchase to the community schooling system. What made this so unique wasn't the fact that they were committed to a school fundraising project, it was that they allowed you to name the school that received the gift. While I make a purchase ofaI service that I truly do need, I can directly have a positive impact on my children's education; meanwhile, someone in –let's say- Nebraska can afford the same opportunity to their children or grandchildren.
You can learn more about remote computer repair, and one companies fundraising efforts here.
While mega donations and fundraising as a marketing technique may be good PR- the verdict is probably still out on that- it is the act of community involvement that is so refreshing. Just when you think social pride is all but extinct, our business community steps in and gives us a much needed shot in the arm

Article Source:

About the Author

Raymond is a Public Relations Consultant by day. At night he surfs the internet looking for for things that are worth sharing.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

FEED Keeps Its Promise

If you're anything like me, you're probably trying to get in the habit of using one of those eco-friendly reusable bags whenever you go to the farmer's market or the grocery store. If so, then check out FEED Handbags, a company that specializes in stylish canvas bags, with proceeds benefiting an array of hunger-related causes.

Starting in 2007, former model turned Princeton and Parsons-educated fashion designer Lauren Bush joined forces with Ellen Gustafson, a communications officer for the United Nations World Food Program, to launch FEED with the premiere of their trademark reusable shopping tote. Right from the beginning, each sale carried a guarantee: to provide a child in Africa with school lunch for a year, all via the UN's school-feeding programs.
Now they've joined with retail partners like Whole Foods and Harrods to bring their mission straight to customers. Their line has extended too, featuring bags inspired by the cause or region they support. The featured item of the moment is the FEED Guatemala Bag, a colorful tote handcrafted by artisans in Guatemala with sales benefiting UNICEF's children's nutrition iniatives in Latin America.

Likewise, the FEED Haiti Bag was designed specifically to drum up resources for that country in the wake of their devastating earthquake, while for each sale of their FEED Health Backpack, the company donates another backpack to a UN community health worker in Africa.

Even a quick glance at their homepage hints at the scope of their success thus far: 539,188 handbags sold, and 54,701,980 meals provided to kids around the globe. With a growing community of fans, customers and fellow philanthropists, FEED offers a sweeping and timely vision of global outreach.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Finding the Balanced Blend: Managing a Mix of Business and Philanthropy

For any business owner, there's a constant push-pull between devoting time to a philanthropic cause of choice, and yet staying focused on the core business. After all, without the engine of profit to generate dollars and keep your staff employed, what resources would you have left over to devote to a cause?

Acclaimed chef Michael Chiarello recently addressed exactly this issue. You'll likely recognize Chiarello from the first season of Bravo's hit competitive cooking show, Top Chef Masters, or his Food Network program, Easy Entertaining. He's also the founder of the retail chain NapaStyle, as well as the owner and head chef at the Italian-inspired fine dining restaurant Bottega in Yountville, California, widely recognized as a jewel of the Napa Valley culinary scene.

Chiarello is the epitome of the charismatic celebrity chef, but he recently wrote quite candidly on his personal blog about the tricky balancing act of running his multiple businesses while still serving the causes close to his heart.

Throughout his career, Chiarello has made charity work a priority. On Top Chef Masters, Chiarello donated all his cash winnings to a longtime favorite organization, Clinic Ole, a community health and dental clinic that assists migrant laborers and the underserved in the Napa Valley's wine country. He also frequently works with Meals on Wheels, the noted organization devoted to creating senior citizen nutrition programs around the country.

As you can imagine, Chiarello feels the strain of running several popular and demanding businesses while still assisting his causes when asked. As a younger chef, Chiarello recalls, he would virtually always donate his time, food and energy, jetting around the country to cook for various benefit events. As he got older and developed his signature branded empire, all those hours in the airport became tougher to fit into the schedule.

So Chiarello cooked up a compromise option. Here he describes it:

These days when people ask me to donate “my time” I tell them we’ve come up with a formula that allows me to auction off my services but still keep my Bottega staff and myself out of the Food Bank line.

1) I cook their dinner for eight (or six or twelve or twenty) in the restaurant. That way, I can still take care of all the other patrons at Bottega that night. And I get to go home and see my wife afterward.

2) I ask that they pay Bottega’s average revenue for the table – for us, it’s $60 per head. So if they auction off the table for eight at $5,000, they pay us $480 and still make $4,520 for their charity. I agree to work with them and write up a special menu, and I’ll give their table a lot of love when they’re here.

This approach means I can still look at myself in the mirror every morning without going anywhere near the security line at my airport. The restaurant is able to help many more charities then it would if we were footing the bill and the charities get the difference in $$.

This allows him to host functions at Bottega, putting his star power to good use and sharing the delicious flavors of his Crispy Potato Gnocchi, his Hand-Cut Whole Egg Linguine or Preserved Lemon-Spinach with fans and guests, while still remaining close at hand to tend to the needs of his restaurant.

Managing time and business demands, inventively leveraging resources for the benefit of the community, these are the continuing challenges of every philanthropically-oriented business owner.

Fortunately, Chiarello, like any chef, adept at reconciling the flavors, colors and textures of his delicious cuisine, knows that, in business too, it's all about striking a balance.

Friday, July 16, 2010

Getting To Yay-Meetings That Produce Magic

There is lots of enthusiasm and passion in the world of nonprofits and charitable organizations. Harnessing that passion and purpose in a meeting can be a challenge unless there is a structure that helps move everyone towards more efficient decision making. In the earlier post, How To Make Meetings Magic, the focus was on using techniques that help engage and energize the participants. But now, that engagement, when not properly directed, can create chaotic meetings where decisions can’t be made and further action can’t be taken. By applying a few simple meeting facilitation techniques, meetings can be enormously productive and lead to results that help your organization move forward and will get people to feel so positive that they will want to come back for more meetings in the future. That's pretty magic! Yay!

Separate into breakouts
Often topics become unwieldy when a group is too large, there is too much information to cover; some people are more interested in one topic than the others. Meetings are more productive when they are intimate as everyone gets a better chance to be heard and therefore has more opportunity to be involved. Smaller breakout groups can generate a brief report of their discussion and bring it back to bigger group to finalize a decision.

Generate creative problem solving and ideas
Sometimes decisions can't be reached simply because there are not enough good ideas out there to solve the problem! Brainstorming is a very effective meeting technique that has been adopted by many groups to stimulate creative problem solving. Brainstorming is a form of free flow thinking without discussion or criticism. Often brainstorming is used in conjunction with mind-mapping which helps links the ideas into themes. This method allows everyone to feel that they have made a contribution to the problem solving. After brainstorming, participants can discuss the pros and cons of each idea, prioritize and come up with a final list of conclusions or action items.

Decide on how to decide
If there are legal protocols that must be followed, such a motions and voting, then please do not disregard them. When decisions need to be made that require some type of agreement, use a method that is the most efficient and seems the most fair to everyone involved. There are several decision making methods to choose from: majority or percentage votes, decision made by experts, decision made by authority after group discussion, decision by averaging individual opinions, several different structures of consensus. When people feel satisfied that the process was fair, they are more satisfied with the outcome.

Request feedback
People are more interested in participating when they will feel that their input has been valued. If time permits, solicit feedback for how the meeting went and write it on a flipchart for everyone to see. Or, to save time, hand out feedback forms at the end of the meeting. Be sure to type up the results of the feedback and send them to everyone after the meeting along with any minutes that may have been taken.

Reward and motivate
Feed the participants, thank them for their comments, applaud their ideas, and give them mementos to take away (like the plants on the tables). Don’t forget to send everyone thank you emails and notes.
When sending everyone a report of the meeting includes mentions of everyone’s positive contribution. Public acknowledgment is one of the best rewards possible.

Since I first started working on these meeting facilitation techniques, I have noticed how many of them are beeing used in the meetings that have been well run. That wonderful feeling of "Yay" at the end of a meeting, contributes to a lot of satisfaction  to being part of  that group and organization.

Monday, July 12, 2010

How To Make Meetings Magic-Tips For Non-profits, Philanthropic and Community Organizations

It seems like I have been to going to quite a few meetings and workshops lately for a number of non-profits and business organizations that I belong to. I have also had the opportunity to facilitate a few myself and, admittedly, noted some of the pitfalls I have run into while trying to get people engaged in the meeting.

I can't tell you how many times I have wanted to jump in and  take control  of someone else's meeting and set time limits on people going on and on, or run up to the whiteboard to write down all the ideas generated in the meeting.How else could participants come to make informed decisions without having some structure to the discussions?

It is no surprise that so often reactions are: “Oh no, not another meeting”, " Nothing ever gets done", “I hate meetings.” These bored, frustrated and vehement reactions are all too familiar to many of us for several reasons: meetings go on too long; individual input doesn’t seem to count; it’s boring to listen to others go on and on; decisions are never made; agreements can’t be reached.

Effective meetings are critical to the management of any organization but even more so to non-profit, community development and philanthropic organizations. Often participants at these types of organizational meetings are volunteers or employees of the organization who are there because they are passionate about the cause, not because it is a required part of their job. Organizations run the risk of losing these supporters and volunteers if they need to sit through ineffective or boring meetings.

With just a few tools and techniques like the following ones dull and ineffective meeting can be turned into sparkling ones that engage everyone and produce quality decisions and results.

Part I- Engagement

Break Through and Get To Know Each Other

Use ice-breakers and introductions. Often people arrive at meetings, workshops or conferences and never get a chance to meet or relate to anyone else in the room, even if they know each other! Using an ice-breaker helps the participants make personal connections and creates a more congenial and friendly atmosphere.Have them introduce themselves in an unusual way, have them interview and introduce other participants, or use any other ways to liven things up.
For a more serious meeting, starting with a common question for everyone to answer unites everyone around a relevant theme, and energizes the group immediately.

Use a “Magic” Marker
Many people think better “visually’. A flipchart, a white board, or any surface that can be written on, helps the facilitator capture everyone’s thoughts and ideas by mapping them together into major themes and topics. Seeing the whole picture helps make decision making better.
Don’t hoard the markers-let others use them too. Some of the best meetings I’ve been to have allowed anyone to pop up randomly to help synthesize the ideas visually.
Pictures are worth a thousand words. Many visioning processes have groups design pictorial representations of the images they have for the future of the group or the organization.

Get Physical
People who are coming in groggy for morning meetings or sleepy after lunch need a little jolt, and not just form their coffee. Ice-breakers can be structured so that people have to get out of their chairs and move around the room.
Later on in a meeting, people may start to get sleepy if they are sitting for too long. Invite people to be the scribe for meeting, pass around materials or hand out food.  A brief break to get up and stretch or to use the facilities, helps people to come back into the meeting more alert.
At longer meetings breaking people into groups where they have to move chairs or go to another room can energize people while giving them them the opportunity to connect with others some more.

Make the Agenda Visible

Make sure that each participant has a copy or can see the agenda posted with the allocated time for discussion of each agenda item. This helps creates a mental structure for anyone who speaks in the meeting to be more precise in what they have to say because of time constraints.
Appoint a timekeeper who will keep the meeting moving along with reminders of how much time is left.
Be sure to include enough time in the agenda at the end of the meeting for "other items to be discussed."

More to come in the upcoming post-Part II- Reaching Effective Decisions at Meetings

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

GiftBack Solutions

You can never have too much of a sweet thing, right? After profiling Bake Me A Wish on Monday, I discovered another cool e-retailer with a yen for the delicious, and a built-in commitment to giving.

The website is, and they specialize in connecting web-shoppers with innovative non-profits to boost the impact of their online purchases. Enabling customers to "have their cake and donate too," they facilitate a 10% donation for every purchase made through the site. You simply find the right gift, select a charity, load your shopping cart and go. features a wide array of gifts for him, for her, even for baby. Participating brands include such recognized names as Brookstone, the Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory, and David's Cookies. If you're sending a gift to a male friend, why not send him a few Ribeye Steaks from La Cense Beef? For a female friend, maybe a Caramel Popcorn Tin courtesy of The Popcorn Palace? Want to welcome a friend's new baby? Check out the chic Baby Diaper Cakes from Bloomers Baby, decorative cakes fashioned from real disposable baby diapers, swaddled in silks, tulle and satin.

As I mentioned, partners with a variety of non-profits. Their featured organization of the moment is Until There's a Cure, a national organization dedicated to funding the fight against HIV/AIDS by selling branded bracelets.

Best, like all good businesses, solves a problem for their customer. The site's success, I think, can be attributed to their combination of gift-giving and charitable giving. We'd all admit it's fun to give and receive gifts from coworkers, professional partners and loved ones. At the same time, isn't it gratifying to receive notification that a donation has been made in lieu of your gift? So what if you could have a little of each? bridges the gap by facilitating gift-giving with a charitable spin, offering a best-of-both-worlds option.

As they put it themselves, "It is no longer enough to just do good business; there is a need for businesses to also do good themselves."

Monday, July 5, 2010

Cakes and Causes

Sometimes the sweetest treats offer even sweeter side effects. New York-based company Bake Me A Wish! has made a scrumptious success out of proving just that. The business specializes in delivering gourmet cakes anywhere in the United States by a guaranteed delivery date, even overnight.

Offering rich, sumptuous cakes for a host of occasions ranging from the typical birthday to the anniversary, graduation and the get well soon variety, Bake Me A Wish! features a stunning array of dessert treats, including Red Velvet Chocolate Cake, Boston Cream Cake, Mississippi Mud Cake, Carrot Cake, as well as a line of Coffee Cakes, sporting such variations as the Caramel Apple Crumb Cake and the Viennese Raspberry Coffee Cake.

Is your mouth watering yet?

But it's not just the delicious products that caught out attention here at Business That Cares. Bake Me A Wish! has, for several years now, been a proud member of the philanthropic community as well, delivering - what else? - cakes to those in need of a little taste of home.

The effort started with the rollout of their Freedom Cake, a "deluxe chocolate brownie thickly blanketed with smooth and creamy fudge frosting, with an avalanche of sprinkles adorning the top and bittersweet chocolate shavings all along the sides." But this cake isn't just patriotic in name only. As with the "buy one, give one" movement I recently chronicled, for every Freedom Cake sold, Bake Me A Wish!, in partnership with Soldiers' Angels, donates a second cake to a soldier in Iraq, Afghanistan or elsewhere abroad.

The Freedom Cake has even spun off another program, Operation: Birthday Cake, in which Bake Me A Wish! customers can earmark 5% of all purchases to the delivery of monthly cakes to America's service men and women overseas.

The effort has generated a huge amount of press buzz, and Bake Me A Wish! has even posted some of the soldiers' grateful responses.

And American soldiers aren't the only recipients of this generosity. Bake Me A Wish! also features the Change Your Life Cake, a creamy concoction of chocolate and peanut butter, the sales of which benefit the Friends of Island Academy in New York, a non-profit youth development center designed to council young people who've run afoul of the law.

But here's my personal favorite. Bake Me A Wish! also offers the Mortgage Apple Cake. This custom cake was designed by Angela Logan, an actress and now full time Bake Me A Wish! partner, who began baking and selling the cakes to stave off home foreclosure. Angela's efforts succeeded when she saved her home and paid off her mortgage, at the same time catching the notice of Bake Me A Wish!, which now offers the Mortgage Apple Cake for sale on its site and donates 5% of the proceeds to GreenDebt Solutions, one of the nation's leading non-profit credit counseling services.

Enjoying a delicious treat and helping to comfort soldiers far from home, help at-risk youth, and stave off home foreclosures - now that's having your cake and eating it too.

Friday, July 2, 2010

Giving Bears, Kids and Heroes

Let me tell you about Kids Are Heroes. Hands down one of the most inspiring non-profits I have come across, ever. Kids Are Heroes is an organization started by a, then 9-year-old, named Mary Margaret. The goal of the organization is to empower children to become involved in philanthropy. Kids join the organization and become a  "hero" whereby the organization writes about their philanthropy and helps support them in their cause.
When I saw on Twitter a message from Gabe O'Neill, the dad of Mary Margaret, asking followers to help promote this organization through their blogs, I jumped in with a big, big yes! 

I first started on Twitter right around the time when Gabe set up a separate blog and a separate Twitter account to help others with advice on how to use Twitter. His goal was to find a means to support his non-profit through his workshops. When I e-mailed Gabe directly about some questions I had about Twitter, he replied immediately with great advice-several times. I have been following their progress and seeing their organization grow. Even when they have acquired over 20,000 fans, Gabe continues to answer every Twitter message, or email personally.

Yet, I have a commitment here to write about business philanthropy and so I searched for the tie-in. I didn't have to look very hard to find stories about businesses that have jumped in, one way or another, to support Kids Are Heroes. Gosh, if I had come across these stories without knowing about Kids Are Heroes first, I would have wanted to write about them anyway.
Last winter Kids are Heroes approached a business in Gettysberg, PA, Boyds Bear Country. Boyds Bear Country is a store in a huge barn based on the theme of teddy bears, and other animals too. In fact they claim to have the world's largest teddy bear. They have lots of activities and events and have a theme park atmosphere to their operation. So, on June 26th, Boyd's hosted the first ever "Kids Are Heroes Day, which featured 11 of the kids heroes, an inspirational speech and show with special guest stars, ex-NFL star Levar Fisher and ex Super Bowl champion, Devin Wyman. This event was such a huge success that it inspired Gabe to approach the FSK Mall for a Kids Are Heroes Day in Oct.
Is Hersey's Park next? How about Disneyland!

Another partnership that came out of the ranks of Kids Are Heroes was with a gaming company CTI Digital. See:A Heroic Opportunity  They were looking for a young “gamer” to come out to Los Angeles for three days to demonstrate their newest “gadget” at the Electronic Entertainment Expo and they were looking to Kids Are Heroes to help promote the event. One of their heroes, 8 year old Ricky Springer races go-karts to raise awareness and funding for a unique disease that he suffers from. Ricky and his family agreed to go to LA and have the opportunity to demonstrate one of the new games, which happened to be CTA Digital’s brand new Inflatable Race Kart for Wii!! This gave Ricky exposure for his cause and both he and Kids Are Heroes received donations from CTA. What a perfect cause match here!
What is meaningful and important about all of this is that non-profits need to seek out opportunities for partnerships with businesses that have some relationship to the non-profit's purpose. This creates a benefit to the business as well as to the non-profit. Business are thrilled to support causes that they love, and who wouldn't  love Kids Are Heroes. But if they can't make the connection between their business and the cause, the partnership is not going work.

That being said, Kids Are Heroes has just posted their coporate sponsorship offer on their website. It's a great opportunity for a business to get exposure through their website. 

Oh by the way, in case you are scratching your head at the grammar of this post's title, I recommend that you read the book, "Eat Shoots and Leaves". This is an entertaining, (truly) and very illuminating grammar book that explains the proper usage of commas and how their placement can affect meaning. Nobody ever accused me of being a great grammarian, so I'm not sure whether I meant "giving" in the title to modify all three nouns and whether it's a verb or an adjective.

You, the reader may take it any way you choose. Either way I think you'll get the point. Giving is great whether you are a bear, a kid, a hero, or a business.