Are there causes that inspire you to do your best to give back to society? Or have you ever looked around and felt the plight of those less fortunate?
Whether you are passionate about helping children get access to education, empowering women or helping bring hope and security to those less fortunate - chances are there is an NGO out there that supports this cause too.
And while you may want to help - not everyone is in the position to make large donations monetarily - and in some cases, people want to do more and be completely involved in the cause.
But, worry not, there are plenty of ways to make a change without having to donate large sums of money yourself.
Here’s How You Can Help
1. Donate Your Time
Be a part of something bigger and volunteer with an NGO. Donating your time - and your skills will help in more ways than you can imagine.
The unfortunate truth is that NGOs and shelters primarily depend on donations to function. From paying staff salaries to maintaining infrastructure to taking care of the day-to-day requirements of those they care for - these costs can run very high, very quickly.
This makes it difficult for them to hire adequate staff to handle their operations - which is why they depend on volunteers to help them out.
While this may involve working in a role that will not provide you with a salary, you will meet many like-minded people, and you can use your professional skills - be it communication, accounting etc. to help these organisations run smoother!
To get you started, here are a few questions you should ask yourself, so you find the perfect volunteering role for you:
- Would you prefer to work with children, adults or animals?
- What causes would you most like to support?
- Would you like your role to be in-person or remotely?
- Would you want a more administrative position?
- How much time do you have to commit to this endeavour?
- What are the skills - both personal and professional - that you could bring to the table?
Once you have these figured out, it’s as simple as contacting an NGO or charity close to your heart and letting them know that you would like to help!
Fundraising ordinarily happens one of two ways. Either a fundraising event is physically held, and people attend and donate to the cause - or the fundraiser is taken online.
Hosting a fundraising event isn’t for everyone. Not only do they require a lot of planning and time - but they are also expensive to host.
And with the pandemic - these events have come to a halt. Most NGOs and charities saw a severe dip in the donations they were accustomed to receiving - from their regular donors - putting them in a dire financial crisis.
However, online fundraising has seen a boost in the past year.
Crowdfunding, in essence, reaches its goals by raising money from a large group of people. This method requires much less time on your part - and it will allow you to reach a global audience with the hit of a button. These fundraisers do require a little planning, of course, but with the help of numerous crowdfunding platforms - it’s as easy as it is rewarding to help those in need.
To get you started, here are a few of India’s most popular crowdfunding platforms:
Why, this past year, saw The Crowdwave Trust raise over INR 1 crore for the causes they support - all via online funding!
3. Donation Drives
When you aren’t exactly sure of how much you can donate - or if you would like to gather up a large amount of supplies for a charity or NGO, hosting a donation drive is a great way to do so.
Not only will this help them with supplies, but you will also be helping spread awareness about the charity and the cause that they support!
To get started:
- First, decide which charity or NGO you would like to help - and get in touch with them to find out what they need.
- Get your friends and family to help - donation drives require planning and coordination - so make it less stressful on yourself and get everyone involved!
- Set your goals upfront - are you looking to reach a specific number of books for children? A targeted weight of food and provisions for a shelter? Once you have these clear, you will be better positioned to communicate effectively to potential donors.
- Figure out where you will host the drive, how you need your donors to drop off the supplies, and how you will thank them for their donations as well. Leverage social media to ensure that you reach as many people as possible.
4. Donating In-Kind
When you look around your house, we’re sure that you can see things that you don’t need, barely use or would prefer to give to someone who needs it more.
When you may not be in a position to donate money or have the time to host a donation drive or volunteer, the simple act of giving what you have in excess to a charity or NGO that needs it is enough.
All you would need to do is find out which charity to donate to and contact them if they require the extra clothes you have or the kitchen utensils that you do not use, or toys that your children may have outgrown.
It is also possible to partner with crowdfunding platforms to do this - for example, at The Crowdwave Trust, donations-in-kind are also accepted and are shared with beneficiary organisations.
5. Spreading Awareness
The simple act of letting people know what is happening around them and how they can help bring us one step closer to helping the charity or NGO achieve their goals!
Here are a few ways you can help get the word out:
- Talk about it on your social media pages.
- Share news articles, videos or blogs that highlight the issues the less-fortunate in our society face - and how people can help
- Work with local businesses to promote the causes of local charities.
- Host a fun challenge - like a cook-off or a game night - with your friends and family and encourage them to participate to see who can raise the most for a local cause.
- Have people donate money or supplies instead of receiving gifts for your next special occasion.
There you have it! You see, you can do many things outside of simply donating a sum yourself to help organisations that do so much good work in the world around us!