You don’t have to be wealthy to be a philanthropist. All that’s required is a generous heart and a willingness to get involved. In fact, some opportunities let you get involved, even if your time is all you have to give.
Every Donation Counts
Every gift counts, regardless of its value. This is especially true of local charities in which a donation of $5 or $10 might be enough to feed a family for a night or buy a student a textbook. Also, many organizations count all donations the same, when they tally everything up at year’s end. When they publicize a list of 10,000 donors, the amount each donor gave typically remains confidential.
Your Time May Be More Valuable Than Cash
Many charitable organizations find it easier to obtain monetary donations than to get physical help. For that reason, your ability to volunteer for a few hours a day may be placed at a higher value. You could volunteer to serve meals to the homeless, help out at an animal shelter, or you might visit the elderly in your neighborhood. Anything you do to help the people in your community will be appreciated more than you may realize.
Organize a Drive
You don’t necessarily have to align yourself with an organized charity. You can help a cause that you feel strongly about by organizing a drive on your own. You can collect non-perishable food for the hungry, clothing for the poor, or holiday cards for people in the military. The most important thing is to take up a cause you feel strongly about because your passion for it will inspire others. Once you collect enough donations, you’ll feel a great sense of accomplishment in delivering gifts to those in need.
Attend Charitable Events
Large companies often support causes through the purchases of their customers. For instance, they might donate one dollar out of every purchase of their product to a worthy cause, such as breast cancer research. Alternatively, some charities host inexpensive dinners or sponsor theater productions. By attending one of these events or buying one of these products, you can do something you would be doing anyway and help a cause out at the same time.
There’s no limit to what you can do as a philanthropist. Use your imagination and infuse your efforts with some creativity to come up with novel ideas for giving back to your community. You can also look for ways to contribute to broader national or worldwide organizations. Often, if you reach out to an organization that interests you, they will offer ways for you to get involved.