Monday, 13 June 2011

Act as if what you do makes a difference. It does.

The title of this post is a quote I really like, by William James.


Although I haven't got a lot of money to spare now that I'm going to Australia, I do try to donate a little bit of money to charities now and then. I like to think that what I do makes a difference in the world, no matter how small. I try to remember to put my change in charity jars in shops if they have them, I put old clothes in charity containers and sometimes I just donate some money to a charity, or sponsor friends that are fundraising.

I'm an organ donor, I used to donate blood, I had to stop now that I'm going to Australia, but I will look into maybe donating blood there as well. If I can't, then I'll go back to doing it when/if I get back. And I want to sign up to be a bone marrow donor. I give the books I don't want to keep to the library so that other people can enjoy them. When I was getting ready to move back to Norway from England, I gave most of my books to OxfamI try to buy Fair Trade products when possible, and if I can afford them. For my dad's birthday last month, I bought a bottle of Fair Trade olive oil along with a Body Shop Shaving Cream he likes.

My 2008 MSF necklace
Pilgrim does one product every year for Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF), where the proceeds goes to MSF. This years it's a bracelet. It seems it can't be bought through Pilgrims internet store though, so if you want one, go to the nearest store that sells Pilgrim and get them to order it for you if they don't have it either. One year (2006 or 2007 I think) I bought 2 of the necklaces they did for MSF that year. One for my mother and one for a friend. I also bought one in 2008 for myself.

I think charity gifts can be great presents for birthdays and Christmas. For example for someone that has "everything", or for someone that doesn't know what they want, or doesn't really want anything (like grandparents).  Often charities has online shops, where you can either donate money, and get a card where it says you have donated, which you can then give to the person you want to, or sometimes the online shops have product that you can buy. If you choose to buy a "proper" product, you can of course also just go to a charity shop, if there is one nearby, instead of buying it online, saves postage.

I try to help the environment. The place where I live is actually one of the worst places in our county at recycling.  I don't get it though, we used to have separate paper, plastic and food/organic waste collections a few years back, then they stopped doing it! Probably became to expensive..
Hopefully it will get better this autumn though as there is a new trash collecting company coming. They sent some information through the post a few weeks ago about how they were going to bring back the recycling. Let's hope they stick with it.


I am thinking about doing some volunteer work while I'm in Australia. Maybe instead of travelling on a couple of the days I have off while I'm working as an au pair? Just so that I'm making money at the same time, and can travel later. Does anybody know of any volunteering opportunities in or around Brisbane?

Just to end this post I want to see if I can help a friend who's doing the Race for Life next month. Please don't feel pressured to give anything, but if you can/want to, please sponsor my friend here.

This year's MSF Pilgrim product.

2 comments:

....Petty Witter said...

A great post, thanks for mentioning both this charity and the bracelet - saddly I don't think we have any shops here in England but I'll check it out.

I also like to do my bit when I can and have my favourite charities that I like to donate to and it so angers me when people comment on your choices - ooh you should be giving to such-and-such a charity in this country instead of abroad, why donate to animal charities instead of those working with children etc. I mean to say sadly there are so many deserving cases who is to say which is more needyand/or deserving?

Lilly said...

They do sell Pilgrim in England, that's where I bought my MSF necklace. They just don't have any shops just for Pilgrim that I know about, but a few other shops sell them. I bought mine at Huckleberry Willow, they had to order the MSF necklace as they didn't have it in though. But they were very helpful with it, and I ordered other ones there later as well as I really like Pilgrim.

And I agree with you that it's annoying when people try to tell you which charities to donate to. If everyone gives to different ones, then more charities will get support, right? Isn't that better? I don't mind when people tell me which their favorite charities are,or which they donate to, as long as they don't try and force me to donate to those as well.

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