How To Give To Charity – Without Donating Money

How To Give To Charity – Without Donating Money

No one is disputing the importance of charitable causes but with financial pressures of modern living, it’s hard to donate. But the good news is there are lots of charitable ways to give back to society without giving up next month’s rent. Here’s how…

Give Blood

This is possibly one of the easiest ways you can make a real difference to the people around you – and you may even help save a life. Most people between the ages of 17 and 66 can give blood – as long as you are fit and healthy and weigh between 50kg and 160kg – and you can do so as a one-off or on a regular basis. It’s quick and easy to donate too – you just have to register online and then find an appointment near you. 

Find out more here. 

Give Your Credit Card Rewards & Supermarket Points

Before you spend all the rewards you’ve earned with your credit or debit card or supermarket membership, consider whether you really need them. Many banks and shops now allow you to give the money you’ve accumulated to worthwhile causes. Sainsbury’s, for example, allows you to donate your Nectar points to Oxfam. You can buy things like safe water for a family of four for 2,000 points (the equivalent of £10), a ‘super’ goat for 5,000 points (the equivalent of £25) or a farm kit for just 1,000 points (the equivalent of £5). You can also donate American Express membership points and your NatWest rewards. 

Become An Organ Donor 

It’s a sad fact but as many as three people die every day in need of an organ transplant. Help make a difference and sign up to donate your organs when you don’t need them anymore. Carry an organ donor card in your purse and make sure you tell your family what you’re happy to donate.

Find out more here. 

Don’t Throw Away Stamps

In today’s technology-crazy society, it’s rare now to receive post with an actual stamp attached, but if you do – don’t throw it away. The Royal National Institute of Blind People collects stamps from envelopes, cards and parcels and recycles them into much-needed funds. Whether they’re first or second class, foreign or special releases, the charity can use them to help those with sight loss access the support and information they need.

Find out more here.

Keep Your Leftover Paint

Just finished a renovation project? Don’t chuck away your leftover paint. According to the Community RePaint Network around 50 million litres of paint is thrown away each year in the UK (that’s the equivalent of 20 Olympic-sized swimming pools!), and the organisation now aims to redistribute this DIY stable to those in need. The initiative is sponsored by Dulux and has helped local groups and charities refresh shared spaces and create colourful murals for the community, enabled people on low income to redecorate their homes at low cost and provided employment, training and volunteer opportunities for many others.

Find out more here.

Raise Puppies To Become Guide Dogs

We thought this one might get your attention. What could be better than looking after a cute puppy for charity, right? There are more than 4,950 blind or partially sighted guide dog owners in the UK and it’s no exaggeration to say these highly-trained canines have transformed their lives. To help Guide Dogs to be able to continue to offer this service, the charity asks for volunteers to care for the puppies and play a vital role in their early socialisation and education. If you’re keen, you would take on a dog when it is just seven weeks old and look after them right up until they are 12-16 months old. From there, they would head off to a local centre to begin their specialised training. 

Find out more here. 

Become A Dog Walker

Can’t commit to raising a puppy but love the idea of taking a dog for a walk? The Cinnamon Trust aims to help elderly and terminally ill people to continue to look after their pets by providing practical help with the day-to-day care of their animals. As part of this, the charity has created a dog walking network across the UK. 

Find out more here.

Donate Your Platelets 

Did you know that as well as donating blood, you can also donate your platelets? These are small cells that help work with other parts of your blood in order to stop or prevent bleeding and are particularly useful for patients with leukemia or other cancers who may have too few platelets as a result of their condition or treatment. This process takes a little longer than usual blood donation (about 90 minutes) and involves filtering your blood through a cell separator machine (where the platelets are removed), and then returning it to your body.

Find out more here.

Sign Up To The British Bone Marrow Registry 

If you’re already a blood donor and are aged between 18 and 49, you can ask to join the British Bone Marrow register. This aims to find stem cell matches and help those with diseases such as some forms of leukemia. The donation procedure is quite involved – you can either have an injection for four consecutive days to boost the number of stem cells in your body, which are then filtered out from your blood, or you can donate bone marrow itself from your hips. This latter option involves staying in hospital for two days and a recovery time of five days.

Find out more here. 

Walk Miles

Get fit while doing your bit for charity by downloading the app Sweatcoin. This converts steps into digital currency (called sweat coins) which you can then use to buy products or donate to good causes. If you’re keen to get involved with its charitable endeavours, you can join other Sweatcoin users to help with crowdfunding initiatives such as the provision of water in developing countries.

Find out more here.

Record Books For The Blind

If you’re a skilled narrator, you could consider donating your time to Calibre Audio Library– a charity dedicated to providing audio versions of books not commercially available to those who can’t read themselves. You can record the books in your own home and Calibre provide all the necessary equipment and training.

Find out more here. 

Give Up Your Old Car 

If your car has seen better days and you’re thinking of replacing it, why not donate your old vehicle through GiveACar? For a small service charge (taken from the overall donation proceeds), this organisation will donate the value of your car (after scrapping it or auctioning it off) to any registered charity in the UK. To date it has raised over £2.5million for more than 1,800 charities.

Find out more here. 

Take Unwanted Things To A Charity Shop

If you’ve recently Marie Kondo-ed your home, the chances are you have bags of stuff ready to throw away. But before you reach for the bin, take a second to think if someone else could make use of it. Giving old things to a charity shop is one of the most common ways to donate to a worthy cause and the Charity Retail Association estimates that charity shops in the UK raise more than £295m every year– that’s essentially money that would have otherwise be sitting in a landfill.

And If You Do Want To Donate Money…

To make any monetary donations count as much as possible, always opt to give gift aid (if you’re a UK tax payer). You could also consider signing up to Payroll Giving, also known as Give As You Earn. This allows you to make contributions through your salary, which are taken from your pre-tax pay – meaning a £10 donation will only cost a basic rate taxpayer £8.

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