Life Wellbeing Ten charitable things that don’t involve ice buckets

Ten charitable things that don’t involve ice buckets

ice bucket challenge Daniel Ricciardo.
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A viral phenomenon known as the Ice Bucket Challenge has brought the notion of charitable giving to the forefront of global attention.

Countless videos of celebrities, sportspeople and average citizens dumping ice water on themselves have encouraged donations to the ALS Foundation of more than $94.3 million in the space of a month.

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It’s a worthy cause, but it’s not the only cause. By all means, those who feel impassioned should donate, but before you reach for the bucket, consider other less-publicised initiatives that could require your attention.

Here are 10 ways you can help the world in five minutes:

1. Donate to Library For All

Library For All is non-profit organisation aimed at increasing literacy and numeracy rates amongst children in the developing world. Innovatively, it is working to promote reading and education by providing access to a cloud-based digital library.

The library, currently available for K-12 students in Haiti thanks to crowd-funding, contains eBooks from major publishers, education materials and local language resources. The goal is to provide access to the cloud for children in other African countries.


coffee friend help2. Ask someone if they’re okay

It may seem simple, but taking the time to sit down with a friend, colleague, family member or acquaintance could make a huge difference to their wellbeing.

If you’re feeling concerned about someone you know, head to the R U OK? Website and read their guide about how to start a conversation, ask the right questions and gauge whether someone needs help.


3. Sign up to sponsor a child

For $48 a month, you can guide a young person into adulthood by providing improved access to healthcare, clean water, food and education. It takes minutes to sign up and from there the payment is automatically deducted each month for a period of up to 15 years.

The company’s transparency is high: they are quick to assure you that 79.5 per cent of your money goes toward executing and maintaining World Vision programs, with only 7.1 per cent going to administration.

It’s all worth it when you receive letters and photos from your sponsored child in the mail sharing updates on their life.


4. Deliver Meals on Wheels

If you have a car and some free time, you can help deliver food to those in need with Meals on Wheels Australia. Every state has an office where you can sign up and the amount of time you commit is up to you.

Delivery is done in pairs and can take anywhere from one hour to a full day – whatever you can offer.


charity thrift shop5. Shop or donate at a thrift store

When you need new clothing, skip the department store and visit charity stores run by St Vincent de Paul, the Red Cross, Lifeline or the Salvation Army (they even offer an online version). It’s environmentally sound as well as much more affordable.

Similarly, if you’re cleaning out your closet, resist the urge to hit ebay and instead give your high-quality hand-me-downs to your local op-shop to sell.

6. Donate blood

It costs you nothing except a pinprick in the arm, and it can make a huge difference to someone who seriously needs the help. It’s even more important in winter, with the cold and flu season forcing 1000 donors a week to cancel their donations.

Make an appointment at your local Red Cross donor centre to help people who are suffering from cancer, blood disease, anaemia, heart disease or kidney disease.


7. Pay a teacher’s salary

The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees gives you the opportunity to pay for the employment of a teacher to provide essential education opportunities for refugee children.

One payment of $80 will cover one month’s employment.


french-bulldog8. Sign up to foster a dog

RSPCA state offices provide the opportunity to foster animals to those over the age of 18. You can either take on a pet for a short-term or long-term period and the organisation will fund veterinary care and support.

Contact your local RSPCA office to help

9. Sell bandannas

Canteen’s national Bandanna Day is coming up on October 31 and you can assist in raising funds for young people with cancer by ordering a box of bandannas to sell to friends, colleagues and neighbours.

You can order your box of bandannas today and return the funds you raise to the organisation by November 7 – or just make a donation.


10. Register for organ or tissue donation

It’s not for everybody, but some people may wish to provide organs or tissues for transplants after their death by registering their decision on the National Donor Register.

This means your decision can be verified in the event of your death and you also have complete control over the organs and tissues you would wish to donate.

Ensure you do your research and talk to your family before registering.


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