Caption: Philanthropist J.K. Rowling, after receiving an honorary degree from the University of Aberdeen
What is philanthropy? The word can be traced back to Ancient Greece. It means to love people. Philanthropists are people who are dedicated to helping others. They give to help a cause. Philanthropists give without expecting something in return. In some cases, they may be called volunteers. They help people. They work to make the world a better place.
Do you have to be rich to be a philanthropist? Wealthy people usually have money to give. Giving money to a cause is just one way to make a difference. Giving to help others does not always mean just giving money. Philanthropists can give time. They can donate something such as food or other items. Many times people give their talents, too. A person may be a talented carpenter. He or she may donate this talent to building homes. The key to being a philanthropist is the desire to give.
People have been involved in philanthropy for many years. Experts say that Andrew Carnegie was one of the world's greatest philanthropists. He was also one of the wealthiest men in the world. Carnegie made his money by starting a steel corporation. He gave his money to build libraries and museums. His money was donated to start schools and universities. He gave money to help with scientific research and world peace. Andrew Carnegie did not start out being wealthy. He worked hard. He shared his money to help others.