Marcis Skadmanis: Why Microphilanthropy May Hold the Key for Mental Health

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Marcis Skadmanis Founder of World NGO Day

(Spin Digit Editorial):- Beverly Hills, California Aug 12, 2021 ( – Marcis Skadmanis is an award-winning social entrepreneur, author, and international lawyer, known for founding World NGO Day, celebrated annually on February 27th in more than 89 countries.

According to Marcis Skadmanis, one of the impacts of the Covid-19 pandemic has been the disruption of mental health support around the world – in particular, in emerging market economies. According to a recent report by the World Health Organization (WHO), the virus has disrupted or halted critical mental health services in 93% of countries worldwide, while exacerbating existing mental health challenges. For a long time, NGOs have been a significant provider of psychosocial support in developing countries. But research suggests that Covid-19 has been a contributing factor in significantly reducing nonprofits’ sources of funding and undermining their capacity. This has left a massive gap in mental health care for emerging market economies, which is only worsening with time. The question remains open, can microphilanthropy help fill the gap.

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Marcis Skadmanis emphasizes, microphilanthropy is a growing trend among global citizens. It is increasingly popular because it makes charitable giving more accessible and sustainable for donors. For example, instead of donating $1,000 to a local charity, individuals can more easily donate $25 to international mental health organizations in emerging economies such as India and Brazil. 

The power of microphilanthropy is in its ability to mobilize large numbers of citizens and create new partnerships between private donors, foundations, governments, and nonprofits. Microphilanthropy has been made easier by the advent of online platforms such as GoFundMe and Network for Good, which allow donors to make donations and track the impact they’re making. Social media, such as Facebook and Twitter, also provides a portal for microphilanthropy by making it easier for donors to connect with nonprofits and other like-minded individuals. Research shows that microphilanthropy is primarily fueled by millennials and Generation X.

Microphilanthropy appears to be the future of philanthropy, as the public becomes increasingly skeptical of large donations to organizations that may not spend the money where it is most needed. Stanford professor Rob Reich describes “big philanthropy” as “an exercise of power by the wealthy that is unaccountable, non-transparent, donor-directed, perpetual, and tax-subsidized.” 

Small contributions, however, offer some key benefits, including accessibility and sustainability for everyone: those who cannot afford larger donations can still help out, those who have spare change at the end of their day can donate easily on their way home from work, and people with large incomes can use this method to make tax-deductible donations.

Mental health is a topic that has been traditionally considered taboo for many in some emerging market economies. There is a significant gap in mental health services and awareness that, if not addressed quickly, could result in major social consequences for the next generation.

Marcis Skadmanis further says that World Health Organization has identified depression as the leading cause of disability worldwide. More than 264 million people of all ages suffer from depression worldwide. Mental illness rates are high across emerging markets, with India and China being considered the “most depressed” societies, respectively. Brazil is fourth on the list, following the United States. 

Research also shows that the Covid-19 pandemic, a respiratory illness, had a disproportionate effect on developing countries. Rates of depression and mental illness are expected to continue climbing unless these gaps are quickly addressed with increased awareness and access to quality care for those living in the developing world. 

As Marcis Skadmanis says, the good news is the online community appears to have contributed to a change in people’s perception of mental illness, with many more online users engaged in conversations about the topic. Reports suggest that social media and other digital platforms play an essential role in overcoming the stigma around depression by connecting people who need support to others willing to listen and provide help.

In October 2017, Philanthropy for Social Justice and Peace published an extensive study on the state of philanthropy in the emerging markets, including India, Brazil, and the “Arab Region” countries. The study identifies both opportunities and challenges for microphilanthropy in these countries. Although it describes people in those nations largely as givers who donate out of a sense of obligation or religious duty, it also identifies some critical barriers to donations that include language, access to high-speed internet connections, and lack of trust in the nonprofit sector, Marcis Skadmanis explains.

“Giving is embedded in the culture of the region,” writes the study about the Arab region. “According to the Arab Giving Survey, carried out annually in GCC countries, almost 9 out of 10 people made a donation in the last year. Giving is based largely on social and religious traditions. Takaful – solidarity on the part of those who have with those in need – is integral to Arab societies.”

The study says the following about Brazil: “As many as two-thirds of Brazilians do give regularly, but donations go mostly to traditional causes, with little or none going to rights organizations.”

Marcis Skadmanis says, the importance of microphilanthropy to support mental health in emerging market economies cannot be overstated. The Covid-19 pandemic has disrupted the work of NGOs whose roles are critical for mental health, which is expected to worsen without increased awareness and access to quality care.


Marcis Liors Skadmanis, FRSA, Honoris Causa., LL.M, LL.B. was known for his philanthropic support for Holocaust awareness and studies, environmental protection, art for causes, and awareness of sustainable fashion. Currently, Marcis particularly supports the NGO sector, microphilanthropy awareness, mental health, and LGBTQ+ rights in the UK, USA, and overseas. Learn more about Marcis’s work at  or

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