When people hear the word “Philanthropist” they tend to assume that it is the act of a millionaire who donates a whole load of money to a charity.
Philanthropy couldn’t be more wrong than that deffinition.
The act of being a philanthropist is to do something selfless that does not benifit you but does benifit others. It can be a small gesture or a big one.
Here are some simple examples of Everyday acts of Philanthropy I like to take part in:
Operation Christmas Child This is my big act this year and one I hope to spread to others. I would love to see other people take on the fun filled duty of filling up a shoe box with goodies and sending it off to a nation where kids have virtually nothing. All it takes to fill out a box is, collecting essential items like hygiene, Toys, school supplies, hard candy etc and including the $7 shipping fee in an envelope inside the box then Volunteers do the rest, even the volunteers are Everyday Philanthropists as they dedicate their time to organizing boxes, inspecting boxes and hand delivering them to villiages world wide. Last year over 8 million boxes were distributed! These boxes can change lives, many kids can’t go to school because they can’t afford simple school supplies and when they get these boxes they are excited that they have things we take for granted like pencils, paper etc. Some kids don’t even know what Christmas is and are just filled with joy when they recieve a gift from complete strangers. If you have a few bucks to spare and a bit of time, fill out a box or two!
Food Bank There was a time where I actually had to use the food bank because I faced a hard winter where I could not afford food because the hydro was too expensive. So durring the sumer months I like to give back, it’s quite simple, there are food drives all the time and there is a food bank box in the grocery store. Most grocery stores have them. It is crucial to donate items especially around holidays so that people may have the opportunity to have a holiday meal. I like to grab an extra item or 2 when I shop then drop it off in the box on my way out. It might only cost me $1 each time but if many others do it, the food bank would always be well stocked for those in need.
Tim Horton’s Camp Donation Box When I get change back I like to drop off the chage in the little donation box. It doesn’t have to be the Tim Horton’s box, many retail venues have some sort of charity box. I love to donate to the Humane Society as well as I am an animal lover. It doesn’t take much money, just simple pocket change. The chage adds up which helps fund so many things. There is a charity box out there for you, make s simple donation.
Missions Trips I love to help others fund their mission trips, I would LOVE to go on a trip one day but for now I’m happy helping those able to go. Missionaries do not get paid, they raise money to go and volunteer their time. Support missionaries because some can’t do what they do without your generous donations and support.
Christmas Toy Drives: Picking up a few extra toys while doing Christmas shopping for the kids. So Many local children don’t get much for Christmas but toy drives make sure that many kids get something special durring the holiday season.
School Supply drives Picking up a few extra school supplies and dropping them off in the school supply donation box. Staples usually does a Back To School toy drive where they fill up Backpacks for local kids so that they will be all set for school. Even on a tight budget, spending the extra 25 cents on a pack of paper goes a long way.
Charities: Even donating $10 can go a long way. Remember if a lot of people donate the money grows! Your $10 does help!
Clothing Donations: Donating your lightly used clothing to free clothing give aways. My town has a bi annual clothing give away where people drop off unwanted clothing and then people come in and take what they need or want. New clothing can be costly so sometimes people rely on donations. And there are some great finds too, I myself have rummaged through such give aways and found awesome T-shirts and sweaters…I have even found new shoes! Think of it as clothing swapping, bring in your unwanted clothes and go hunt for some new to you stuff.
Volunteer: Time is money! Volunteers are needed. Many non profit organizations rely on volunteer work. It’s fun, you can set your own hours and so many people (Or animals) benifit. I have donated my time at the Humane society as well as many church functions and I can honestly tell you it’s so rewarding! I absolutely LOVE volunteering. If you think about it, for every hour you volunteer you are technically donating $10 or whatever minimum wage is.
There are so many little opportunities at every corner. You too can be an every day philanthropist. You won’t get paid in money but I guarantee you will be paid with abundant smiles and get that happy “I helped out” feeling!