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Make a sterling donation by spending some of your TIME!

When we think about charity partners or fundraising events we tend to think about the end result revolving around one thing – money, money, money! And donating money is easier than ever. Thanks to advancements within technology we can access online donation pages, send money by text or phone call, or book a spot on a fundraising event all without having to roll off the sofa.

Of course, raising money is the main focus for non-profits to enable them to make a difference. But there are other ways that you can make a contribution to a voluntary organisation that can be just as useful and effective, without requesting an office bake-off. As the saying goes, time is money, and a lot of charities require support to organise their events, promote their fundraisers or contact businesses for sponsorship or auction items, all of which cost time and money.

What we’re trying to say is, donations aren’t all about the dollar! As a business or as an individual, you can donate your skills or your time to help out your named cause, thereby saving a charity particular costs. Perhaps you work as a Web Designer, a Marketing Manager or an Events Promoter? There are a number of roles that can be hugely effective in giving support to charities by providing your service for a reduced fee, or even better – for no cost at all. Or perhaps you are looking to gain experience within the events industry whilst simultaneously giving back? A recent survey conducted by The Guardian discovered that 95% of people aged 13-24, hoped to develop new skills through volunteering.

But if you fancy doing something slightly different to your normal day job, simply donating your time can also make an impact. Having an extra pair of hands helping out at a fundraising even can go a long way, something of which most eventprofs are well aware! Just like the events industry, charities need to manage their strict budgets. Money has to be allocated to develop campaigns, set up fundraising events and to still make a difference to the dedicated cause that ultimately drives all of this activity. If you help out by distributing flyers or jingling a collection box on a designated Saturday, you might be freeing up more time for the person who is arranging the final touches for an upcoming fundraiser. It can also be an opportunity to develop relationships with venues.

Volunteering can also make a difference to your own life in terms of health and wellbeing. As mentioned in a study by the Corporation for National and Community Service, Office of Research and Policy Development, “Evidence suggests that volunteering has a positive effect on social psychological factors, such as one’s sense of purpose. In turn, positive social psychological factors are correlated with lower risks of poor physical health.” Even a team-building activity could be based around volunteering, encouraging positive working relationships whilst simultaneously boosting self-esteem, benefiting the business in a completely different way.

Other ideas enable you to have a more personal approach. If you’re someone who enjoys being active, get training for a charity 10k, and you can put in the time and effort (or is it blood, sweat and tears?) whilst others can make the donations. If you think your cakes could rival Mary Berry’s, invest in the initial ingredients and get baking! People are usually very happy to swap donations for a chocolate éclair. We know these aren’t revolutionary ideas, but every effort helps to make a difference.

So next time you are meeting up with your charity partner or hoping to help out a local non-profit company, why not ask the question? Are there any areas within the organization where your skill set could be utilised? Have they got any upcoming events that require additional man-power? Is there a ‘Forrest Gump’ of the office who could run to raise awareness as well as funds? All of these types of support will help charities to reach their fundraising targets.

As we’ve discussed, Lime Venue Portfolio believe donations don’t have to be all about the dollar, but whatever you decide, making a donation of either time or money – or both – ultimately helps to make a difference.

Check out all of our Charity partner venues here.

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