Throughout the globe, there are countless charitable organisations that have emergency funds, each with their own specifications and donation requirements. Everywhere you look, people need help and there is nothing better than showing empathy than by donating to a cause that you resonate deeply with.
With so many different causes out there, it’s difficult to know who to help. Before you make any impulse decisions, ask yourself the following questions: who needs it? what do they need? And which groups can you trust? If you are unsure, emergency funds are always wonderful donation platforms. These funds exist to assist with any ‘emergency’ event that takes place due to natural or man-made causes. They are also ongoing and require constant attention to be able to sustain their long recovery periods.
Here are three tips to note when donating to an emergency event:
- Donate money first and then your time
Although many of us feel the natural urge to share our goods with others in need, when it comes to a disaster event, donating tangible products does not have the same effect as money would. It may feel impersonal, but because the distribution channels are affected in the process, along with additional transportation costs, donating goods significantly reduces the value of your donation when all these extra elements come into play. If you cannot donate money, then that is fine. Many people would love to help, and donating your time, like people do with Doctors Without Borders, is just as important. If not more.
- Don’t give all your donations at once
Disaster events take months to recover, so it is advised that you do not donate everything all at once. Or once-off for that matter. Try to stagger your donation over months or contribute monthly to assist whenever needed. Ideally, the duration of your donation should correspond to the recovery period, but if it doesn’t, separating your donations over a period of time will definitely help.
- Try to avoid donating impulsively
When looking for an organisation to donate to, find a place that you trust. This way you’ll know that your donation is going to a good cause. The best advice with emergency funding would be to avoid impulse donations and try to stick to a cause that appeals to you. When you donate monthly, it will help you avoid big impulse donations that may not be as effective as monthly payments would be.
Donating is much like any other consumer decision. The least impulsive you are, the more effective your donation will be. And because donation funds are such a personal contribution, take your time to familiarise yourself with the different organisations that you want to give money to. For example, try to tie your donation in with a purpose. If you are an animal lover, you may want to give to a shelter. Otherwise, directing your money to groups of people, like children, or causes, like public health, will help you feel better about your donation. This way you can also follow the cause and see where your money is going.
Here are a few reasons why you should give back:
- You’ll feel better about yourself: Feeling rich can have many meanings. And rich in love and kindness is definitely one of them. When you help those in need, it makes you appreciate the finer things in life. And when you have enough to share with others, you are truly rich.
- You’ll be part of something bigger: Donating a small amount of your salary every month to a good cause will make you feel like you’re part of something bigger. Be it big or small, whenever you give back, you are taking the opportunity to make a change and set an example for those around you. Even though your small amount might not feel like much, when you join it with others, it creates a massive difference. A little goes a long way, and it’s the thought that matters most.
- You’ll set an example: Be it in your personal life or in your career, when you give back, you are setting an example for everyone around you. It also helps you become the best version of yourself. If you have children, you are showing them what it means to care about others, and how important it is to make a difference where you can. These small acts of kindness will inspire them to make a change in life and show them the meaning behind giving. Another area that could really be affected by you and your good deeds is your community. Become the change you wish to see.
Whichever cause you wish to pursue, remember that giving isn’t a business transaction. It’s a human connection. The act of giving needs to motivate you and resonate with you. Once you give with purpose, it will inspire you to make a significant change in your life and the lives around you.