Have you decided you want to make a difference and support a charity, but just don’t quite know the best way? Well here are a few ideas to get your charitable thoughts flowing. You don’t have to be a millionaire! You simply need to have a willing heart and follow through with these selfless actions.
1. Sign up for Amazon Smile:
Amazon Smile is a great way to provide money for charities without using money from your own pocket. Every time you buy something on AmazonSmile, Amazon will donate 0.05% of your purchase to the charity of your choice! If you don’t know what charity to donate to, a great one to start with is Idaho Foster and Adoptive Parent Association, a foster care charity helping foster kids in Idaho. Visit this website to choose IDAFAPA as your charity on Amazon Smile: https://smile.amazon.com/ch/26-3724607
2. Volunteer your time:
There are countless charities out there that simply don’t have enough hands to help! Soup kitchens need hands to serve food. Many organizations need hands to assemble care packages. Almost every charity simply needs hands to organize and distribute donations that they receive. You may not have cash, but you have hands that can heal hearts.
3. Donate used items:
You know what they say, “one man’s trash is another man’s treasure.” If you’re anything like me, you often hold onto clothes and other random items that you never even use. If you haven’t used it in a couple of months, that’s probably a sign that someone else needs it more than you do. There are always charities collecting used items for good causes, and you can help! For example, the foster care foundation, IDFAPA is always in need of clothing, toys, school supplies, beds, and much more. You can easily see what items you can donate by visiting their website https://idfapa.org/ways-to-give/
4. Become an advocate for giving:
On social media, go and follow all the charities that you would give a million dollars to (if you had it). Even if you don’t always have money or items to donate, you might have friends who do. As you follow your favorite charities on social media, you can become an advocate for them by reposting their needs and encouraging others to give what they can. Your excitement will spread to those around you. You can be the eyes and ears out there for these charities.
5. Dedicate a “change jar” to a charity:
I’m the type of person who picks up pennies EVERY time I find them. It doesn’t matter how small that amount of change is. If you dedicate a jar to a charity, you can put change in it every time you stumble upon pennies, or simply don’t want the coins from your last purchase. The next time you find a penny on the street, don’t pass it up. Save it for the person who needs it more than you.
6. Donate your talents:
The truth is that you have specific skills and talents that can bless people more than money could. Money can not buy happiness but sharing your gift of music with a foster child or sharing your crocheting skills with a blanket for a homeless person could. Your talents have the potential to bring more joy into the lives of people in need than any money could.
7. Do good to inspire good:
There was a study done with 104 college students to test the idea of the impact of doing good on another person. They found that “just showing an inspiring video of people being kind is enough to cause these dramatic events taking place in the body and to allow you to want to pay it forward and be prosocial in turn.” (https://greatergood.berkeley.edu/article/item/how_our_bodies_react_human_goodness) So as you simply try to do good, you never know what good you will inspire in those around you. Kindness is contagious.
These are all small and simple ideas, but they can truly make a BIG difference. Never doubt the good that you do in this world. Anything helps and a lot of hands make light work. We’d love to hear your inspiring experiences with supporting charities as you try out these ideas and any other ideas that you have.