Covid-19 has seen the world face extraordinary circumstances and added hardships – devastating economic consequences of lockdown, racial injustice and gender-based violence to name but a few – leaving many of us desperate to be a part of the solution but with minimal financial resources at our disposal.
Saturday 18 July is Mandela Day – the one day of the year when every South African is encouraged to donate 67 minutes of their time to undertake acts of kindness in solidarity to improve the lives of those less fortunate. Apart from the increased need for help and decreased disposable income available to the average South African, there is also the challenge of social distancing, which means the public won’t be able to actively participate as they have in previous years.
We’ve found some ways to “Pay it Forward” this Mandela Day that won’t break the bank or Covid-19 regulations:
1. If you have ‘virtual rewards’ available from your banking institution (EBucks or UCount Rewards for example), consider sending a Takealot order of food, blankets or cleaning supplies to a shelter you support (animal or human)
2. Do a cupboard clear-out and donate any unwanted items (clothing, shoes bedding, kitchen utensils, books and so forth) to a charity shop, such as those at your local SPCA, who will sell them on your behalf to raise funds.
3. Pack a few extra sandwiches or cups of soup to distribute to those in need in your area or on your way to work.
4. Donate pre-loved books, toys or excess school stationery to orphanages or child protection centres.
5. Consider finding ways to use YouTube and social media platforms to make a positive difference – share posts from NPO’s and organisations in need or create tutorials that might be beneficial for someone less fortunate.
6. Create a virtual event (such Zoom Quiz night or a virtual cycle race on Zwift) to fundraise with friends and family for a cause close to your heart.
7. Contact NPO’s and charity organisations that you’d like to support and find out if they could use your professional skills in any way (for example graphic design to create an upcoming event poster, Web development skills to help update a website or even finance skills to help create useable templates to simplify tax submissions).
8. Take the time to comment (more than 4 words) on Facebook and Instagram posts of charities and ambassadors you support as the social media algorithms provide greater exposure for those who have online engagement.