Welcome to our new monthly column from CAP with hints and tips for saving money.
How to be charitable when money is tight
If there’s one thing the COVID-19 pandemic has shown us, it’s the power of charitable giving. According to a special giving report from the Charities Aid Foundation (CAF), support for NHS-linked charities skyrocketed in 2020. It just goes to show what’s possible when collectively we all get behind a cause. Perhaps you want to get involved and give to the causes you care about, but money is already so tight that you don’t see how it’s possible. Good news! There are lots of other ways to support your favourite charity and make a difference.
Make use of social media
Facebook has a feature which allows you to set up a fundraising pot for your friends and family. Why not create one for your birthday and ask people to donate instead of buying gifts? Simply log in to your Facebook page, click to create a post and select ‘Raise money’ to get started.
Raise funds while shopping
Are you a regular Amazon shopper? When you order through Amazon Smile, they’ll donate 0.5% of the amount spent to a charity of your choosing. It won’t cost you anything – other than what you’d be spending on your purchase anyway – and there are loads of eligible charities to choose from. If you’re not convinced 0.5% will go very far, bear in mind that the initiative has raised more than £5.7 million for UK charities since November 2020. Every little really does help. Head to smile.amazon.co.uk to find out more.
The pandemic has shown that we don’t need to venture far to do something worthy of raising lots of funds. Look at the late Captain Tom who raised millions for the NHS without leaving his garden! There are various websites available that allow you to set up a fundraising pot and gain sponsorship, most of which won’t cost you anything. What activity could you get involved with to help raise vital funds for a worthwhile cause?
Do what you love
Fundraising doesn’t have to be all about athleticism. Maybe running a marathon or skydiving is never going to be your thing. Think about what you enjoy doing or what skills you have – how could you turn these things into fundraisers? If you love video gaming, you could do a sponsored 24-hour game-a-thon. If you’re into crafts, consider if you could make something to share with friends and family to raise funds. Your handiwork could even benefit a charity directly – for example, you can support your local neonatal unit by knitting or crocheting items for premature babies. See bliss.org.uk/support-bliss/volunteer/knit-for-premature-babies to find downloadable patterns. Challenge yourself, have fun, and make a difference in the process.
Volunteer your time
Finding ways to be charitable that fit into your lifestyle is a really easy way to make an impact. You could find out more about volunteering at your local foodbank for one afternoon per week, or support a neighbour by collecting shopping or medicines for them. Your time can prove just as precious as your money – if not more so.
Christians Against Poverty (CAP) is a UK charity with over 580 services across the country delivering debt counselling, money management, job clubs, life skills groups, and support for people breaking life-controlling dependencies. Visit capuk.org to find out more.