Ways to Get Involved: Part 1 - Donate

If you’re like me, this past November was a big wake up call. A wake up call to be a more active citizen. I have always been pretty clear on my political leanings and I have always really enjoyed politics. But I never really realized that I needed to be an active part of the conversation, of the debate, of the action. It’s hard to know where to get started and I am just getting my feet wet. Right after the election I felt like I needed to immediately become a politician or activist and then I quickly realized that it isn't easy or fast. So I'm trying to do some smaller things, closer to home, in hopes that if we all choose to just take a few more small actions it could make a world of difference. This will be a three part post, so for today the first suggestion is DONATE.

  1. Pick one organization and become a regular donor:
    • Even though it’s tempting to donate to every single organization out there, unless you are a billionaire, it’s not realistic. I suggest picking one or two organizations you feel very strongly about and donate a set amount monthly. Non-Profit organizations need the money to keep them going and as it was explained to me by an excellent canvasser, they need to know that they can rely on a steady stream of money each month. I started donating $20/month to Planned Parenthood which I feel really good about, and puts them in better situation of understanding their cash flow.
  2. Give donations as gifts (and ask for them as gifts from others!)
    • My grandmother made this a tradition many years ago for Christmas, we all get a great card with a list of the things she donated in our name. Usually food/animals for people in rural places around the world.
    • As a cancer survivor one year for my birthday I asked for people to make donations in my name to the American Cancer Society.
    • This year for Christmas I added a few donations in as gifts to family members - ACLU & Special Olympics were the two I went for and extra added bonus, if you do it on Giving Tuesday there are usually all kinds of matching bonuses!
  3. If you would rather donate THINGS instead of MONEY:
    • Donate food to a homeless shelter or food bank
    • Donate clothes to GoodWill
    • Donate gifts to organizations like United Way around the Holidays for programs like Adopt-A-Family