After reading Mummy Bean’s post earlier on How did you introduce charity I questioned myself. I too wanted to change the world, to rid society of inequality and generally make a difference. Was I naive? Have I done anything amazing? No to both I think.
Having said that I do give to charity and I have shown my students and my own children what we can all give amazing gifts. One of those gifts is TIME. Although I missed Comic Relief this yr due to little one being in hospital I am sure that many many donated – their once or twice a year donation. The causes are obviously worthy but I do wonder (and question) how that makes individuals feel. Do they publically announce their donation and pat themselves on the back and then go back to their lives? Controversial, I might be but is that really enough? How many of us can do more?
If we can’t give money (and not everyone can) we can give time. I frequently discuss this with my students and I try to encourage them to volunteer somewhere. I’m too busy is often given as a reason not to give time. But you have to make time. I work three days a week, have three children and so many of my friends say they don’t know how I can do my voluntary work aswell. Sometimes I don’t want to go, sometimes I am too busy / tired/ hungry but once I’m there doing my stuff, its great. I get so much from my volunteer youth worker role and I enjoy my time with the youth group. They teach me knew things each week and help me develop into a better person. Well, after a quick bit of maths I can say I have been doing it for 10 years at three hours a week. That is a fair amount of time!
So back to Mummy Beans question how do we introdue charity? I think being a role model is so important. That showing our children how important charity is, and showing how to make a difference is powerful. If they can see how we can all help each other and how we can give a little bit of ourselves to help others, we are surely educating them along the way.
If we give money great, it is certainly needed but lets see what else we can do. If everyone pulls together we have power in numbers. We can transform our neighbourhoods, our communities and wider. The giving needs to be a challenge aswell I think, because then it really makes a difference.