Nathan Washatka

Nathan Washatka works in fundraising at the Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center. He holds a B.A. from Cedarville University and an M.F.A. from Johns Hopkins University. He is a regular contributor for Philanthropy Daily, and his writing has also appeared at the Hopkins Review and Front Porch Republic.

philanthropy and civil society mr. rogers neighbor
Did Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood impact our understanding of neighborliness?

Fred Rogers, host and star of Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood, invited all of use to be his neighbor. But can we really be neighborly to everyone?

Ebenezer Scrooge: a model for philanthropists

While Scrooge’s name has come to be associated with a joyless parsimoniousness, his transformation in A Christmas Carol actually demonstrates real philanthropy.

Good fundraisers make good neighbors

Door-to-door solicitations can promote neighborliness and serve as a valuable part of a healthy community.

Who’s afraid of nonprofit overhead?

Five prominent foundations recently pledged to support more overhead expenses. This is good news—but will it really be a radical shift in the landscape of fundraising?

The problem with “stewardship”

“Stewardship,” traditionally, implies a hierarchy, a notion of subservience. Is it a fitting word for the fundraising profession today?

storytelling for philanthropy and fundraising
Crowdfunding and contingency: does storytelling distract from effective giving?

In a recent piece in the New Yorker, Nathan Heller worries that GoFundMe exacerbates the problem of using stories to exploit the emotions in order to generate donations—rather than relying on more data-driven giving.

beggar in street morality of charity
Panhandlers and moral culpability

Most of us have wrestled with the question of whether to support a panhandler. Does our lack of knowledge about how our gift will be used make us morally culpable?

A look at Anand Giridharadas’ “Winners Take All”

Giridharadas prescribes the replacement of one center of power for another. Where does that leave civil society?

Consumption philanthropy and the quest for coherency

John Ruskin’s keen observations on living coherent and integrated lives sheds some light on our modern practice of “cause marketing” and “consumption philanthropy.”

Philanthropy and risk taking

Philanthropy is sometimes said to be “society’s risk capital.” But without market accountability, without consumers or competitors, we can’t properly speak of philanthropic grantmaking as “risk taking.”