Tuesday, December 21, 2010

3 Easy Ways to Change the World.

Sometimes when you look at the world and all that seems to be wrong with it, it can be overwhelming. There is so much to be done, that it seems impossible, so rather than do anything at all, we do nothing.

The truth is that small actions can have huge impact. You don't have to do a lot and you don't have to solve every problem to make a difference. Here are three easy ways to make a big impact.

Loyalty Points

Did you know you could use points that you earn for doing everyday things to make a donation to a charitable cause? For example, Air Miles has five causes you can support with a donation of 170-175 miles. Aeroplan also lets you donate miles to more than ten causes in a lump sum or by donating 2% of your earnings. Another easy way to donate your points? Redeem for certificates that can be used by charities--a grocery store certificate for a food bank, a clothing store certificate for a teen during a Christmas gift drive--the options are truly endless.

Reuse, Freecycle

An easy way to reduce the amount of items going to the landfill is to donate them for reuse. Many charities like the Salvation Army, Good Will and the Canadian Diabetes Association are happy to have your cast-offs so they can resell them to fund their activities.

Another way to deal with unwanted or unneeded items is to Freecycle them. This is a great grassroots idea. You post your unwanted item online to your local Freecycle group. Someone who would like the item will e-mail you. You choose who to give it to and arrange a mutually convenient pick up time. Alternatively, if you need an item, you can post and see if anyone has one to offer. The main rule is that the item has to be free. It's a great way to reduce your clutter and have a positive social impact. Not only are you giving new life to old items, but you can also help someone out who really needs what you have but may not have the resources to purchase the item new.

Care 2

Care 2's tagline is "Care 2 Make a Difference". This Web site is great because it houses so many different things that you can do to make a difference. There are petitions you can sign, stories you can read so that you stay informed about causes that matter to you, lots of articles and information, and some really cool features. You can earn "butterfly" credits for doing different actions on the Web site. You get 20 credits for taking a daily action--this usually amounts to less than 5 minutes to read an article or sign a petition. Your butterfly credits add up and you can redeem them for different things like carbon offset, school supplies, whatever matters to you. Another neat feature is click to donate. It is so easy. You click on a cause, and the advertisers donate to it. There is a tally so that you can see your positive impact over time. It's so easy to do and takes very little time.

These are just three little ways that you can take small, easy actions that have big impacts. Small actions, taken by many people, add up. You can be a part of positive change in the world around you.

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