by Verena Zyla
With problems being all around many young people try to make a difference in the world, but many don’t know how to do so and where to start. Thanks to the internet it is much easier than most of us think.
I remember being a teenager and being completely overwhelmed by the problems our world is facing. From environmental issues to animal cruelty to gender inequality – the negative list seems to go on and on. For a long time I wondered how I could make a difference in the world while being in school, and later college. Of course volunteering is a great way to do so but most young people are either too lazy or not organized enough to find a volunteer job, some may not even have the time.
I have volunteered and I think it is a great and fun thing to do but I understand why so many young people decide not to put in the effort. The good news is, there are much easier ways for you to do something for this world.
1. Start a petition
The beauty of the internet is the freedom it provides. Many websites make it easy to start a petition on any topic that is important to you. Check out Avaaz.org or Care2.com
2. Write articles for an online website/Start a blog
If you love to write you might want to choose to write on topics that interest you. Many websites look for ‘volunteer’-writers that write on social or environmental issues. If you don’t want to write for another website, start your own blog. This will not only raise awareness but will also look good on your CV.
If you have some money left by the end of the month you might choose to donate some to a cause that you feel strongly about. The internet makes it very easy and even if you might only choose to donate a few dollars, the difference can be huge! Check out the websites of NGOs and help them to work more efficiently. If you do not want to donate to a big organization, “google” small NGOs that really need financial help or ask your friends if they know of any cause worth supporting.
4. Become a member of an organization
While organizations need money, they also need voices. You can be a voice by becoming a member of a NGO that you trust. Examples include PETA, Greenpeace, The Sierra Club, Humane Society International, Amnesty International, etc. Check out their websites and they will tell you how to become a member.
5. Educate others
Thanks to Facebook and Twitter it is so easy to spread information. Use those tools to educate others and raise awareness on issues that are important to you.
6. Gift a gift that makes a difference
Many organizations offer gift-services with all profits going to charity. Check out Oxfam.com and look for OxfamUnwrapped, where you can gift e.g. school books to a poor child with a certificate being sent to your loved ones.
7. Shop responsibly – online!
You can help organizations and the world by shopping responsibly. Many NGOs sell clothes and other articles that will help them to fund their activities. Another way would be to buy sustainable products online which you cannot find where you live (e.g. organic cotton-clothing, organic cosmetics, etc.)
Always make doing something good fun, that way you will continue doing it.
Here are some links for you to browse:
Feel free to add any organization that is important to you in the comment section!