When Charity Counts, But Change Is Called For

“Charity is ensuring someone has a meal tonight or roof over their head … things I suspect we agree are good things to do,” says Richard C. Harwood, founder and president of The Harwood Institute for Public Innovation. The problem comes when we believe that charity is a substitute for change — in fact, that it IS change.

Today, we have countless ways to show our compassion and extend charity in response to people’s immediate needs, but to create change, Harwood says, “we must get at fundamental structures, policies, laws, norms, relationships.” Read his State of the Reunion guest blog at http://stateofthereunion.com/when-charity-counts-but-change-is-called-for

About the Lead Author

Richard C. Harwood
Rich Harwood is a leading authority on improving America’s communities, raising standards of political conduct and re-engaging citizens on complex and controversial public issues. He is a frequent contributor to national and syndicated media outlets including MSNBC, NPR, The Christian Science Monitor, CNN’s Inside Politics, The NewsHour with Jim Lehrer, and C-SPAN. Called "one of the great thinkers in American public life," he has dedicated his life to helping people make good on their urge to do good. His latest publication, Why We’re Here, documents how public broadcasters and organizations like them innovate, become more intentional in relating to communities, engage and mobilize people and ultimately deepen their impact in people’s lives. He is founder and president of The Harwood Institute for Public Innovation.

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