After recently looking into the Chicago Bears and what they have to offer regarding philanthropy, I started thinking. How much of the money in our country goes to charitable causes?
According to The Chronicle of Philanthropy, the United States gave $135 billion towards charitable causes in the most recent available tax year. In case you were interested, the Chronicle does a decent job of explaining how they came up with the numbers. For us Illinois folk, we placed #5 in the country in terms of charitable giving, with total contributions of $6 billion. It should be no surprise to you that the Cheesehead state placed far behind at #25, with total contributions of $2 billion. Perhaps they spend too much of their money on the roughly 4.7 million shares of stock for the Green Bay Packers.
All that aside, take an opportunity to look through the "Bears Care" site. Consider saving the money you were planning to spend at Portillo's (or Lou Malnati's, depending on your craving) and instead spend it on helping those less fortunate. The Bears have granted more than $9 million to help those in need, primarily focusing on disadvantaged children and their families, healthcare, education, and medical research programs. For those of you who are season ticket holders, consider donating the tickets you won't be using to charity. Sometimes we need to sacrifice our discretionary income in order to think of others who might need the money more than we do. Otherwise we might turn into this: