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Amber Bonner

Thanks Janet for your comment! I think you’ve raised some really interesting points about our financial status.

I think that by the time we’re 70 or 80, the typical pattern of giving won’t replicate Matures, considering the fact that social security would have probably run out and the money that we should be saving now for retirement is going towards the major debt that you mentioned (i.e. student loans) and “in case I lose my job or get laid off” emergency funds. Most Gen Y’ers are predicted to be more financially comfortable in their 30s, so I put the mark there for the beginning stages of financial philanthropy.

But, until then, building digital clout and outwardly expressing our desire in the social space to positively contribute to causes I see as valuable from a WOM standpoint and to promote group fundraising efforts (since alone, our contributions are small).

We'll have to see what happens! Totally agree with you - the lights do need to stay on! As fundraisers, we need to find the best way to capitalize on the online activities of this audience.

Janet Gadeski

I really appreciate your perspective. I've wondered for a long time about the personal financial situation of GenY, and perhaps you'd like to speak to that.

With high student debt, difficulty finding the jobs for which you've been educated, and Boomers blocking your professional promotion pipeline, it sometimes seems to me that GenY will be 10 to 15 years behind its predecessors at every financial stage.

That's 10-15 years later buying homes, paying off mortgages, launching your own kids, and finally ... able to give significant gifts. If I'm right, your philanthropic potential begins in your 70s or even 80s, rather than earlier. As wonderful as rallying, digital clout and non-monetary impact are, they don't keep the lights on, ship supplies to a disaster zone or pay for researchers seeking a cure for cancer.

I foresee a a huge decline in charitable revenues as the Civics and Boomers complete their giving cycles and the generations behind them are still struggling with expenses and debt loads that their predecessors cast off at a much earlier age.

What do you think?

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