There are hundreds of myths and misconceptions surrounding the concept of philanthropy. These misconceptions can discourage new donors from stepping up and making a difference. Or they could simply be obfuscating the truth of charitable giving.

Here are some of the most common myths about philanthropy and the truths hidden behind them.

Myth: Only Large Sums Make a Difference

There’s this common belief that only large sums of money can make an impact on the world. While it’s true that more progress can be made with more money, this overlooks another essential aspect.

No matter how small, any donation can make a world of difference, especially to those who need it the most. In other words – you don’t have to be rich to be capable of donating and thus of making a difference.

Myth: A Single Donation Can Open the Floodgates

Another common misconception is that fundraisers will all jump up to harass a person who has donated a single time. This is simply not true. Fundraisers and organizations do not share client information – especially not personal information – with each other. 

In other words, while you may get the occasional letter from the charity you supported, you will not suddenly find that your data has been sold to every other organization out there. 

Myth: Women Are Less Philanthropic Than Men

Evidence suggests that women play a significant in charitable giving and philanthropy – so any belief to the counter is grossly inaccurate. One report suggests that women are more like to donate than their male counterparts.

According to the Women’s Philanthropic Institute (WPI), the most common predictors of philanthropy are education, wealth, and income. When this insight is applied to the rising equality in pay and hours, it makes sense that women’s donations are also rising. 

Myth: Only the Older Generations Donate

The idea of generational giving is another fallacy, as millennials are just as engaged in philanthropy as their elders. Recent studies indicate that younger generations are more aware of the power of an event-based movement and are more likely to support this form of giving.

When it comes to more traditional giving – the younger generations are reading and willing. More often than not, it is their funds that are lacking, not their hearts.