Giving Games

Giving Games are a method of teaching people about charitable giving. Through “experiential philanthropy,” participants learn by giving away real money to real charities at no cost to them. The Giving Game Initiative at Ohio State has an ambitious goal: we want to provide philanthropy education at a scale that will fundamentally shift the way the Ohio State Community learns about, and practices, charitable giving. In order to do this, we have created a scalable, effective, and sustainable form of philanthropy education tailored specifically for the Ohio State University. We aim to produce a culture of giving on campus where skillful, generous, and informed students support organizations that achieve the most social impact.

Our Giving Game Model

The Maximin Project partners with Ohio State faculty to host Giving Games for the student community or general Columbus community. For every person in attendance, we donate $10 of our own money to an effective charity. It’s free of charge to all. The students and participants just have to show up, eat free food catered by a local Columbus restaurant (with vegan options available), and enjoy the program. At the end of the presentation, we give three charity options based upon The Life You Can Save’s recommended charities and short overviews of their effective efforts, all of them being well-vetted, evidence-based, and doing amazing work in the world. We break into small group discussions and then come together towards the end to debate which charity receives the funds raised during that program. Every student gets a vote, and whichever charity receives the most votes gets the donation. The students learn about effective giving and make a direct impact in the world by being there and making their voices heard. 

If your organization is interested in hosting a Giving Game, please email our Director of Giving Games Grace Palaparty at It would be a privilege if you joined us in our mission to inspire students to make the world a better place and maximize the minimum.

Our Partner: The Life You Can Save and the Giving Games Project

The Maximin Project is honored to be partnered with the incredible international nonprofit organization The Life You Can Save. The mission of The Life You Can Save (TLYCS) is to help change the culture of giving in affluent countries while dramatically raising annual donations to highly impactful nonprofits that reduce suffering and premature death, and improve life and livelihoods, for people living in extreme poverty. A core component of the Life You Can Save’s mission is working to increase awareness of the transformative potential of high impact philanthropy. The Giving Games Project employs experiential philanthropy with participants donating an actual pool of money to highly effective nonprofits through the discussion and application of high impact philanthropy core concepts. Learn more about their extraordinary work here.