Being Generous

Donating to causes you care about is super important. Not only does it help those in need but it also makes you feel like you are making a difference and definitely has you feeling more satisfied in life. Win/Win! It doesn’t need to be a huge amount to start, every little bit adds up and if everyone does their part we can all make a difference in people’s lives. Those of us are living in Australia are already better off than most other people in the world, so I definitely think we owe it to others to share some of that luck and privilige.

Personally, I donate to Foodbank and Beyond Blue on a regular basis. Both are causes I strongly support and will explain why below. I have also listed more charities below that for some inspiration. When I was first looking to donate I only started small and I wanted the majority of my money to go directly to the recipients rather than to admin fees or to some big CEO, so I have also attached a link to The Good Cause Company who have looked into the best charities to donate to.

Most donations are tax deductable also, meaning you can claim them at tax time to get a larger return. Just make sure the charity allows tax-deductable donations and you keep your receipts. Even more reason to donate!

Foodbank

Foodbank is the largest hunger relief charity in Australia. They link surplus food and groceries to people in need. The food they distribute is used in vital food relief programs such as community programs such as community pantries and dining halls, mobile soup vans, emergency hampers and breakfast or lunch programs in schools. When donating to foodbank you can choose which state and program you donate to which I really like. For example, I donate to Foodbank SA and donate to the School Breakfast Program. Other options to donate to are general donations, country and regional program, fruit and veg program and the Foodbank Alice Springs.

Foodbank are also great at calling you to let you know how many meals your money has provided those in need. I have received several phone calls in the last couple of years to thank me for my support and let me know how many meals I’ve provided which always leaves me feeling good. The website says that every $1 you donate provides two meals to an Australian going hungry. This just shows that it doesn’t take a lot of money to make a difference.

Beyond Blue

I also donate to Beyond Blue, which is an organisation that does important work for mental health. As a paramedic I see many patients presenting with all kinds of mental health presentations, and as a result believe we are a long way off of where we should be with treating these conditions. Beyond Blue is doing a lot in this space by educating and providing resources for people to better understand depression and anxiety, and how they can help their friends or family if they believe they may be suffering from these conditions.

My workplace can also be a very stressful one, and combined with the shift work, sometimes traumatic things we see and the nature of the job, there are many of us struggling with mental health conditions. For these reasons I like to regularly contribute to Beyond Blue in hope that one day mental health problems are treated without any stigma and the same as a physical or medical problem.

Other Notable Charities

The Life You Can Save
A non-profit that inspires and empowers people to take action in the fight against extreme poverty. You can donate directly to TLYCS and they will distribute your money to the charities they support that have been rigorously evaluated to get the biggest impact per dollar. Or you can also choose to donate directly to one of these charities.
https://www.thelifeyoucansave.org.au/

The Smith Family
An independent children’s charity helping disadvantaged Australian children to get the most out of their education, so they can create better futures for themselves.
https://www.thesmithfamily.com.au/

Dementia Australia
An organisation that represents the Australians living with dementia and their carers.
https://www.dementia.org.au/

Head over to The Good Cause Company to see other reputable charities you can donate to:
https://www.thegoodcause.co/insights/2018/7/6/who-are-australias-best-and-worst-charities

If you don’t have any money to give away, you can still be generous by:
– Donating old clothes to the salvation army or other op shop
– Volunteering your time at a local charity
– Donating left over cans/non perishable food to a foodbank near you

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