Making your mark, doing your part

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By Gayle Downing

For many of us time is a very expensive commodity.

We lead such busy lives that our time is sometimes one of the most precious things in our lives. We want to preserve our time, to want save it, protect it and use it wisely. Therefore, for some of us volunteering time is extremely difficult. For some it is easier to make a financial donation in some way.

Every one of us, I am sure, has sponsored someone in a charity walk, ride, run. Sponsoring someone to do something has become a very popular way for charities to raise money. That can be a small donation of a few dollars or a large amount. Every one of us, I am sure, has purchased a raffle ticket and that can be for a small amount or a large amount. Perhaps we have attended an event and the price of admission is a donation to the food bank? How many of us have put money in the ‘boot' for firefighters knowing that it is going to a good cause? Many people do this sort of thing almost automatically and may not even remember the last time they did it.

However, I doubt that there is a charity in the world that would not take a large donation if you are in a position to do that. My message is don't underestimate the value of anything that you give or do when you are giving to the community in some way.

A little goes a long way! Those of us that work in non-profit are really inventive and extremely good at finding ways to stretch that dollar.

Briefly what are the barriers that people say prevent people from giving or prevent them from giving more?

>74% of Ontarians say they cannot afford to give more

>63% of Ontarians say they are happy with what they have already given

>11% of donors say they have difficulty deciding what cause to support

>10% say they have difficulty finding a cause worth supporting

*2004 Canada Survey of Giving, Volunteering and Participating.

Gayle Downing is the Volunteer Development Coordinator at the Eastern Ottawa Resource Centre. Gayle has worked in Volunteer Management for approximately 25 years and became a certified in Volunteer Management in 1996. She provides the Orléans Star bi-monthly articles on ways to become a better volunteer in Ottawa.


Organizations: Resource Centre

Geographic location: Ottawa, Canada

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