January is known to be the month of self development and clean living. Gym memberships spike and it seems like everyone is doing Veganuary. But there is also a dip in charitable giving, after a season of excess and spending, giving can seem out of reach in the post-Christmas period. We have compiled some tips on how to make it more manageable and how you can turn your New Year’s resolutions into charitable ones.
When thinking about our New Years resolutions, we tend to be introspective; how we can be better people in the year to come, how we can look after our bodies and our health. Charity is a great way of keeping perspective on how fortunate we are and boost our own morale at the same time – according to CAF, 42% of people say a contributing factor as to why they give is the enjoyment they receive from it.
Why not spend January planning achievable goals around giving. For example, take a look at your monthly subscriptions. Maybe you have a Netflix or Spotify account, maybe you know that you will really only use that new gym membership you’ve been eyeing for one month, not six. A great way to make giving easy is to set a monthly giving goal – chances are it won’t amount to much more than you already spend, but it could make a real difference to someone in need.
Giving circles are a great way to harness giving power, especially when it’s hard to see how you are making an impactful contribution. Giving circles are a group of people with a shared cause close to their hearts. They pool money or time and donate it to their chosen cause. When really successful, giving circles can work as trusts of sorts, for example, some groups require organisations to apply for funding, and donations are discussed at meetings. Beyond charity, giving circles can be a great social activity for members who all rally around a topic they are passionate about.
If charitable donations seem unrealistic after Christmas, it is important to remember that charities do not only welcome monetary contributions, but time and goods and services too. There are lots of ways you can help out, including:
- Volunteering at a food bank once a week, or once a month
- Clearing out your wardrobe of unwanted items and donating the goods to your local charity shop
- Donating blood at your local blood bank
- Are you a social-media guru or tech-wizard? Lots of charities need skills based help and you can often help them remotely
We heard from members of the public about what their charitable resolutions are for the coming year. Find out what they said in the videos below and gain inspiration for your own resolutions!