I believe many of us have spent a lot of money for Christmas gifts these past few weeks. If you’re like me, I also spent a big amount for gifts to my loved ones, buying items from my personal wishlist, and setting aside a food budget for Christmas eve.
Which makes me feel guilty actually…
Spending too much for yourself can make you feel empty. But if you buy or give something for others, it will make your heart breathe and grow in love.
I’ve been getting a lot of updates in my newsfeed regarding the crisis in Syria. It makes me feel somewhat depressed because I want to do something, but I don’t know how to help or feel like I could not help at all.
You come to a point where you wonder if you should go out and help, or just focus on solving your own problems because you already have a hard time managing them.
However, I truly believe that when we connect ourselves to a cause greater than ourselves, our own destructive self-centeredness will disappear.
I wasn’t able to donate much to the Save the Children fund for the Syrian crisis, but the mere act of doing it released a cage surrounding my heart, and made it finally breathe.
We can’t close our eyes on these matters anymore. We are all connected. In this planet in the entire universe, all we have is ourselves.
People in crisis need all the help that they can get. Whatever little you can help, it will still make a difference.
Here’s a list of resources on how you can donate wisely. I’ve also included links below on where to donate for the Syrian Crisis, as well as how to help our fellow Filipinos in need.
WEBSITES THAT CAN HELP YOU DONATE WISELY
Charity Navigator: This site helps you get a good overview of highly-rated charities and make smart decisions in donating. They have a Holiday Giving Guide which is pretty comprehensive to guide you on how to make smart decisions in donating to particular charities.
The Life You Can Save: This is another website which recommends reliable charities you can donate to. They have organized lists according to cause such as charities for Children, Women and Girls, Health, Water and Sanitation, Education, Agriculture, and so much more. You’ll be able to see which charities you can help according to the cause you want to support.
RESOURCES ON HOW TO KNOW THE RELIABILITY OF A CHARITY
How To Run a Background Check On That Charity: This will help you lessen your doubts on where to donate and how reliable a charity could be.
Before Giving To a Charity: This resource highlights the red flags when it comes to donating, a checklist before donating to a charity, and how to report a charity scam.
Charity Watch: This is the charity watchdog in the U.S. They list top-rated charities which have high reliability ratings. They also discuss how to donate thoughtfully and wisely, making sure that your donations will really make a difference.
WHERE TO DONATE FOR THE SYRIAN CRISIS
Syrian Crisis: This guide from Charity Navigator was my starting point in learning which charity to donate to. They have a comprehensive list of reliable charities and their ratings. From here, I chose Save the Children (four-star rating) because they have a program which targets the children and families affected by the civil war.
7 Charities Helping Syrians That Need You Now More Than Ever: This article from Huffington Post features the top charities which are in the frontlines of saving lives in Syria.
Syrian Crisis: How To Donate: An article from The Guardian rounds up the aid agencies which are raising money to help Syrian refugees. It also gives you steps on how to donate to these agencies using different modes of payment.
HOW TO HELP YOUR FELLOW FILIPINO IN NEED
#StopLumadKillings: 8 Things You Can Do To Help Aside From #Praying: 8List has provided information on the concrete steps you can make to help our Lumad brothers and sisters in Mindanao.
Learn More About the Lumad Plight Through the Bakwit Diaries FB Page: You’ll get updates on what the Lumads in Mindanao are going through amidst the crisis over their land and lives. They also lead you to the right direction on where to donate to uplift the Lumad plight.
Save the Children PH: This is one charity that I could rely on in the Philippines. They have a good program to support children in need. You can sponsor a child through one of their programs.
IN A NUTSHELL
I believe that donating to a good cause benefits both the giver and the receiver. The receiver gets whatever help he or she needs, and the giver becomes connected to something greater than one’s own.
Do you have suggestions on reliable charities to donate to this Christmas and beyond? Comment your suggestions down below to help spread the word!