Long-playing philanthropy

Baby boomers across America had a love affair with the “LP,” or long-playing record. Whether you were a rock, country, jazz or classical music lover, stacks of LPs and the associated “record players” formed a large part of the furniture of 1960s households. A variety of musical delight at the drop of a needle.

But do you know the role philanthropy played in the development of the LP?* Long before the rock and roll era, the American Foundation for the Blind received a grant from two donors to explore a practical means of bringing books in audio format to the blind. Through research they uncovered a patent for a new disc under development, and they also researched various materials to make the discs durable enough to ship from location to location. The final material chosen: vinyl. The final product: the LP. Oh, and the American Foundation for the Blind also had to build the first LP record players. 

Though the LP was used exclusively for the blind for its first 14 years of existence, it ultimately made the leap to popular culture — and the rest is history.

Philanthropy with an unexpected though fabulous outcome! 

So what does that story have to do with the 5thannual Chairman’s Challenge and OUR current philanthropic efforts at the North Carolina Community Foundation?   

First, the gift you make today may have benefits well beyond your current ability to predict. 

Second, your gift combined with those of others will achieve an impact above your single capacity alone. 

Most important of all: whether you’re a rock and roll, country, rap, jazz or classical fan, you can be a part of the NCCF’s long-playing record of generosity that is shaping your local community now and for many years to come.

Join me in supporting your affiliate Chairman’s Challenge this month. Who knows? You may be helping to launch the newest phenomenon!

*This story courtesy the Almanac of American Philanthropy.