Donating is one of the easiest ways to make a positive contribution to your community. Donating either your time or money (or both) is a great way to boost your own sense of gratitude while extended a helping hand to others in need.
In fact, a study from the University of Oregon, found that giving to others activates specific regions of the brain associated with euphoria. Their findings were supported by the National Institute of Health’s National Institute on Aging (NIA) and the National Science Foundation. Giving to others makes us feel good.
So, what are you waiting for?! Here are four steps to easy donating.
Donate to causes you personally support. If you’re unsure where to donate, think about how you spend your free time, problems you’ve had to tackle, or an issue that concerns you. This is a wonderful opportunity to find out what your passion is.
For example, if you have experience living through a natural disaster, perhaps you feel compelled to give to a disaster relief organization. Or perhaps you love working with children and want to donate to an organization that works with children. The first step is simply homing in on one problem or issue that speaks to you and your passions.
Once you’ve narrowed down the type of charity you’d like to donate to, start researching organizations. You can start with local groups in your geographic location or national groups with well-known branding.
The DollarDays Wish List tool is a great way to explore organizations of all sizes based on your passion. We have partners all over the country, involved in a wide array of issues. Using our search function, you can see all our partner organizations and visit their websites to better understand the kinds of work they do and find one of interest to you. You can search by name of organizations or by city or state. Because we work with groups all over, chances are you’ll find one close to home.
Most volunteer organizations and charities keep regularly updated lists of items they need most. The needs of each organization will vary based on the type of assistance they provide and where they are located. For example, groups in Miami would not have a need for winter coats or boots or a shelter in New York likely would.
There are several items that are almost universally needed like personal care, school supplies, clothing and shoes. DollarDays Wish List also allows organizations to create a list of their most needed items so be sure to check there too. With our unbeatable prices on wholesale items, you could quickly equip a school in need with backpacks, pens, pencils, and notebooks.
You don’t always have to buy new. Look through your own closet or your growing family’s clothes and pack up gently used items to give away. Donating clothes is an excellent way to get kids involved as well.
Collect all the items you plan to donate and neatly package them. Make sure you have checked with the donation center to see if they have specific instructions for donating including the days they are open. Sometimes they may also have special instructions for where or how to donate items.
Be sure to follow up with the organization as well to ensure they received your donation and to see if they have additional needs. Items like education supplies, emergency preparedness supplies, and supplies to help the homeless are almost always appreciated.
Donating to a good cause can also be a good team-building activity for small businesses. Institute a day or month of giving at various points in the year to build goodwill for your brand and increase employee pride. Be sure to browse DollarDays incredible selection of goods to help do good while remaining under budget.