5 positive ways to give back that won't cost you a penny

When you think about giving back, you probably automatically think about financial ways you could offer support. But giving back doesn't always require money.

Sometimes, the smallest gestures can make the biggest difference. So, consider instead the impact you could make through positive actions and behaviours.

To help get your creative (and generous) juices flowing, here are five positive ways you could give back without spending a penny.

1. Volunteer your time

Time is a precious commodity. If you can spare a few hours a week, volunteering to help someone out could make a big difference. Maybe you could offer to look after your grandchildren for an afternoon or babysit one evening to allow your grownup children time to take on extra work, get on top of some DIY, or enjoy a relaxing date with their partner.

Should you have more time and few pressing family needs, look further and you’ll find all kinds of charity volunteer opportunities.

Think about what brings you joy that you would like to share with others. For example, if you enjoy spending time outdoors, why not join a local litter-picking initiative or offer to help out with a community garden project.

Alternatively, if you’re a book lover, share your love of reading and help adults or children improve their own literacy skills.

A little time spent online could uncover a wealth of charitable opportunities in your local area.

2. Donate possessions you no longer need

From second-hand clothes to furniture, charities are crying out for pre-loved possessions they can rehome.

If you’re revamping your living room, instead of reaching for the simplest solution to get rid of furniture you no longer need – find someone who will collect it and give it away to someone in need.

Clearing the way for some new books on your bookshelf? Donate the books you’ve read to your local hospital, hospice, or charity shop.

Likewise, next time you clear out your wardrobe, take the time to think about whether your clothes could help someone improve their opportunities in life. For instance, there are a variety of charities that help people back into work. So, if you have smart workwear that you no longer need, check to see if there’s a charity who could use your castoffs to help someone land a new job.

3. Share your knowledge

No matter where your experience lies, there’s bound to be someone who could benefit from your knowledge and expertise.

If you possess knowledge that others may benefit from, think about ways you could most effectively share it. It may take you some effort to prepare and pass on your expertise, but your time and generosity could make a big difference to an individual, group of people, or a whole organisation.

Not sure how to get started? Try advertising on charity job websites, volunteer websites, or through community groups and networks.

4. Send a handwritten letter

When was the last time you received a proper handwritten letter? If you’re like most people, the answer is, “I really can’t remember".

This is a sad state of affairs, but one that you could help to change – one letter at a time.

Imagine the joy you could bring to a friend or loved one by taking the time to put pen to paper. Next time you think about a friend or family member that you haven’t seen for a while, or simply want to say thank you to, or share a funny story with – write it down, pop it in an envelope, and mail it.

This small gesture can make a big difference to someone’s day. You could even extend this and write to companies that you have enjoyed doing business with.

5. Look out for random opportunities to do good

Generosity starts with a willingness to shift focus away from yourself, and start paying attention to others.

Sometimes the simplest acts of kindness can have a big impact.

Every time you leave the house, think about others that cross your path. Take the opportunity to allow a car out at a busy junction, smile at the stranger you pass in the street, hold the door for the person walking behind you, or offer a kind word to brighten someone’s day.

Get in touch

We’re here to help make your financial life easier. If you’d like to talk about ways we can help you manage your affairs to enable you to give back to others or ensure you leave a lasting legacy for the next generation, please get in touch.

Email enquiries@alexanderpeter.com or give us a call on +44 1689 493455.

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