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  The project “Promoting Philanthropic Culture in Bulgaria 2012-2014” is financed by the Charles Stewart Mott Foundation, the USA, and is to be implemented from January 2013 to December 2014. Its aim is to strengthen the ability of the key actors to practice philanthropy as a long-term personal engagement and a way to change society, as well as to communicate about charity and philanthropy. The Bulgarian School of Politics will also strengthen its capacity for communicating and promoting philanthropy as a key virtue of our society and as a way for supporting sustainable development.

Overview
In the recent years several books dedicated to philanthropy, including the ones prepared by the Bulgarian School of Politics, were published summarizing the experience in Bulgaria and providing useful tips to those who give or receive donations. Media and NGOs working in the field also organize regular activities to provoke debates and raise public awareness on the topic, thus helping more people to get engaged with giving.   
Despite all these positive results, culture of philanthropy as a broad societal trait is still missing in our society. At a personal level, most people consider sending an SMS for a cause sufficient, which is more a one-time charity event, rather than a long-lasting personal engagement with a cause. Giving individuals usually prefer to stay anonymous and not to share their deeds in public. This from one side does not spread good examples of charity among society, and from the other – does not inspire other people to give.
In the same time, there are lots of pressing problems, among them poverty, abandoned children, environmental damages, etc., which to be solved need united efforts of public and private bodies, as well as of individuals acting as opinion leaders and change agents.
With this project we will strive to become a catalyst of a change in attitudes and mind-set towards philanthropy in our society and to improve the way we communicate about charity and giving. We will also further develop our capacity as a strong philanthropy proponent through targeted researches and analyses, trainings and sharing of best practices and lessons learnt, as well as by involving key stakeholders and opinion leaders in the promotion of charity and giving and for encouraging a long-lasting engagement and social solidarity on the basis of public benefit. 
The results we expect to achieve are a change in the attitudes to philanthropy and charity so as to be seen as a form of continuous engagement to the most pressing societal problems; familiarization of young people with the spirit and culture of philanthropy and strengthening their skills on how to communicate about it; building a sustainable network of giving individuals involving current students, School’s alumni and leading public figures, who accept philanthropy as a long-term personal engagement; and capacity building of the Bulgarian School of Politics on the topic and helping it to become a resource hub on the topic of philanthropy.

PHILANTHROPY AND CHARITY IN BULGARIA
THROUGH THE LENS OF MEDIA

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