“Charity sees the need, not the cause.” – Proverb
Are you considering donating to a charity that feeds, clothes, and houses the poor and needy? If so, do you know that there are many benefits to supporting a charity as a lifestyle choice?
If you do not donate to a charity or NPO (Non-Profit Organization) regularly, it is worth revisiting this decision. As the discussion below will elucidate, giving is an essential part of living a healthy, fulfilling life.
The global socio-economic climate
We currently live in a world that has changed drastically overnight. Most of the global population is hunkered down at home, waiting out the novel coronavirus, COVID-19. This virus is extremely contagious and has infected over 2.2 million people across the globe to date, with almost 155 000 deaths.
One of the most effective, if not the only, means of controlling the spread of the virus is social distancing, or staying away from other people. Many experts believe that most of the world’s population will be staying at home for the foreseeable future. There are differing views on the world’s ability to prevent the continued infection rate through herd immunity. And, an effective vaccine is about eighteen months to two years away.
Consequently, there is every indication that the “new normal” is here to stay. And the economic consequences are dire. The article titled, Coronavirus: Worst economic crisis since 1930s depression, IMF says, published on the BBC.com website, indicates that COVID-19 will “turn global growth sharply negative” in 2020. Additionally, this economic crisis will be the worst since the Great Depression of the 1930s. A UN study noted that 81% of the world’s workforce had been sent home because of the forced closure of non-essential businesses.
Not only is this scenario a serious financial challenge for individuals, businesses, and government, it presents a grave challenge to the NPOs or charities who support the poor via charitable donations from individuals, governments, and corporate entities.
Reasons why it is important to make donating to charity a lifestyle choice
At this juncture, it is vital to ensure that you only donate to a bona fide charitable organization. Otherwise, you run the risk of paying over your hard-earned funds to a fraudulent organization. By way of expanding on this point, this philanthropic organization is an example of a verified charity.
The implied question asking why it is essential to not only donate to charity, but it is vital to make donating to charity a lifestyle choice deserves a considered answer. Thus, by way of answering this question, let’s consider the following points:
Our purpose on this earth is to do good
Richard Dawkins, a prominent atheist, believed that humankind was placed on this earth as “throwaway survival machines, whose only purpose is to survive and replicate genes.” There would be no purpose for our existence if this were the only reason for our time on planet earth.
Steve Taylor, a senior lecturer in psychology, Leeds Beckett University, is of the opinion that “human life is not a meaningless space between birth and death, spent trying to enjoy ourselves and forget about our predicament.”
And finally, the psychiatrist, Kim Domingo, believes that all we need to do is to show up for the day, and do no harm. In other words, our existence is defined by our altruism, and by the good we do.
Therefore, being altruistic and doing good is determined by whether we donate to charity or not. And, our altruism distinguishes or limits us.
Giving is good for our mental and physical health
According to the Mental Health Foundation, UK, there is a “strong relationship between the wellbeing, happiness and longevity of those of us who are compassionate. Doing good can help reduce stress and improve your emotional wellbeing.”
In other words, donating to charity lowers blood pressure, increases self-esteem, improves negative mindsets, depression, and anxiety, increases happiness levels, and improves longevity. Therefore, by looking outwards to help the less fortunate, we actually improve our own quality of life.
We influence others to give
The influencer culture has gained traction because of the increased prominence of social media in our lives. Consequently, an influencer is described as “someone… with the power to affect the… quantifiable actions of others by uploading… original… content to social media.”
In other words, we have become a people who are easily influenced by what other people do. Therefore, if we give, we influence others to copy our altruism. And this response is even more crucial than it should be because of the harsh economic times we are experiencing.
Based on the discussion mentioned above, it is reasonable to conclude that donating to charitable or philanthropic organizations is a vital part of our time on earth. In fact, it is our raison d’etre for our existence.