Volume 8 Leadership Edition Nesterine Blair | Page 60


It Pays To Give

5 ideas for investing in the world around you n a world fraught with social , political and environmental strife , a mindset that involves a more community-driven approach can make a meaningful difference . Each person ’ s contributions to improve the earth can send a ripple effect that ultimately transforms communities and the people who live within them .

Consider these examples of actions you can take , some bigger than others , that benefit the larger community .
Create Shared Common Spaces Nearly every community can benefit from the addition of resources that benefit multiple families . Examples include community gardens , playgrounds , parks and sites for regular farmers ’ markets , to name a few . These may be wholly new projects or restoring facilities that have faded into disrepair over time . Acquiring the space is often the greatest challenge , but if you ’ re inspired to lead such an effort , forming a committee of like-minded peers can be an effective step toward raising the funds to create a project that benefits the community at large .
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Donate to Charitable Causes Supporting the efforts of existing organizations that help fill gaps in your community is another way you can make a difference . Offering your time as a volunteer is one option . You might provide extra hands for relatively simple jobs like sorting food or clothing donations , or if you have a particular skill , talent or training , donating your time and expertise could help offset administrative expenses and help the organization operate more efficiently . That ultimately means the organization can more effectively deliver on its mission .
Financial contributions are also a meaningful way to support a worthwhile cause in your community . Writing a check may not feel as personal as getting hands-on to help , but without the support of financial donors , philanthropic organizations simply couldn ’ t provide the community resources they do . Many organizations will tell you what level of contribution would be most helpful based on their current fundraising needs , and you may have options for a one-time or ongoing gift .
Snack Smarter When you ’ re thinking in terms of how to improve your community , your eating choices may not be on your radar . However , what you eat has a major impact on the community in multiple ways . That ’ s why you hear a great deal of talk about sustainability directed at food production , which affects the environment in numerous