Donating monthly to MEDA is just an ordinary thing for Hannah Hill.
“When I graduated from university and had a steady stream of income, it became obvious I could also give to MEDA,” Hannah explains, “The big and complex problems in the world aren’t going to be solved tomorrow, it takes time, and I wanted my monthly gifts to be a part of that solution.”
Given Hannah’s academic background in business, becoming a monthly donor was a simple way for her to create concrete, social change.
“As an environment & business student [at the time], I saw a fit using business not just to solve climate challenges but also solving poverty challenges. The impact MEDA has and how they measure and report [that impact] is important to me – from what I’ve seen MEDA does a really good job of communicating what my dollar does and the impact it makes. From a business point of view – I really appreciate that.”
Hannah first encountered MEDA while a student at Conrad Grebel University College in Waterloo, Ontario, Canada. She attended the 2016 MEDA Convention in San Antonio, Texas to compete in the pitch competition with a team of students pitching an idea called Drops for Crops – leveraging subsurface drip irrigation for farming internationally. At the Convention, she says she fell in love with the organization’s work using business solutions to solve poverty.
Hannah has stayed in touch with MEDA by volunteering with the local MEDA Waterloo Network Hub and attended two Conventions.
Hannah, who now lives in Kitchener, Ontario and works at the Ivey Business School of the University of Western Ontario as an Operations & Project Manager, believes that giving monthly to an organization you’re passionate about is a simple way to make a difference.
“If you start giving monthly now [as a younger person], even if it is a small amount, it grows over time and also becomes a habit that becomes part of your financial planning. Something small like $5, $10, or $25 a month makes a difference as it compounds over time,” Hannah explained.
Although it is a privilege to be able to give monthly, and Hannah notes not everyone is in the position to be able to make that commitment, she believes it is still possible to give. “You can challenge yourself to save money in other areas of your life so you can give…. It’s like a gym membership, it’s really an investment in yourself. When you make a monthly gift to MEDA – that’s an investment in others, ” Hannah reflects.
Although it’s easy to get discouraged by all the negative messages about the world, Hannah makes a choice to remain hopeful. “In the future, I hope MEDA doesn’t have to exist – because MEDA has accomplished its vision. That it helps create models or replicable solutions that can solve poverty. That may be too out there, it’s pretty bold – but that’s my hope.”
Thanks to generous MEDA donors, during August and September, any new Next Gen monthly donors will have their monthly donations matched for their first year (in addition to MEDA’s 7x leveraging of institutional dollars) to enable entrepreneurs around the world to receive business training, access to finance, and build decent livelihoods for themselves and their families.
If you’re curious to learn more about MEDA, or just want to have a chat about how you want to make an impact in the world – please send a message to Chris Brnjas (Canada) or Vanessa Hofer (USA) who love helping Next Gen folks discover their inspiration for making an impact.
If you would like to become a monthly donor, click here.