11 April 2008

Global Philanthropy Forum: Another Perspective

Okay, so where and when am I going to get a hug and kiss from Annie Lennox again? Did that make this conference for me? Maybe. But there where many other discussions and dialogues of note that made this conference worth attending.

One was the dialogue I facilitated -- a Table Talk Conversation -- about social entrepreneurs consisting of a very engaged and interested group of people. It included two social entrepreneurs and a round of phenomenal people. There are phenomenal people throughout this conference, on stage and off.

Another was the technology discussion on rapid response featuring Mark Smolinski from Google.org and Jan Chipchase of Nokia; another was Fazle Abed (BRAC) and Larry Brilliant (Google.org) in conversation with Judy Woodruff. Stimulating.

Is it worth it? Or is it just another conference? Lucy Bernholz had this to say on her excellent blog, Philanthropy 2173:

"Conferences are what they are. Good ideas, lots of conversations, some entertainment, (hopefully) some provocation, and always that question of whether or not it was worth the time. Here's what is worth it - we are in this together. This is so simple, yet runs counter to so much of what we have claimed for philanthropy. Philanthropy fails when it separates givers from doers, them from us, and uses words likes 'unto' or 'for.' Change relies on all of us. Giving and doing with others requires us to recognize that we have a self interest in making change happen -- not hiding our solidarity, but working from it."

Read Lucy's entire post: Philanthropy 2173