We run a charitable organization called Sushaanthi Seva. We have been doing so many activities for the community for the past 19 years. From my experience, I would say that it is definitely possible to render service to the community without having a need to spend actual cash. Service can be rendered in several ways. I would like to discuss a few services to the community in which actual cash is not involved at all.
People may not even imagine rendering help to the community in means other than spending cash. Spending cash is something that everyone in the community can do or anyone who is well settled can do. But taking the money to the right place and fulfilling a community requirement takes a lot of effort. I'm listing out few extraordinary activities by which service can be rendered to the community.
Writing exams for blind students
This is one of the common requirement in my country and especially in the city I live, there are frequent requests to write exams for blind students. I have not done the task yet but I have heard about this a lot and I know many people are doing this regularly. This type of help is something that needs full dedication without any expectation in return. There is no cash or money involved in this type of service to the community. Some people might say that it is not a direct service to the community, but uplifting the blind students and helping them get a good recognition in the community is actually going to uplift the community as well.
This examination usually happen during the weekends and sometimes during weekdays. This is quite rare. People from various background come for this tasks. The word first spreads to everyone and the organizers call every individual and confirm. This is a very important step because if someone commits that they will be able to help a blind student write their exam and then if they don't turn up, then the education of the student is affected. Usually in these cases the organizers will also have a backup plan. If someone is unable to make it for the exam during the last minute, they will be immediately be ready with a person in backup who will take charge.
Being a post man in doing service
It is not mandatory that we have to spend all the money that we have to do a service. We can either join hands with people who are already spending their money and try to help them accomplish their good intentions or just be a post man. This term post man is something that I regularly mention to my team members. When we are rendering help to orphanages and old age homes, we act as a post man. The sponsors who would like to contribute will just be able to give it as money and not their physical presence. In such cases, we will take up the activity and monitor it in person and execute it for the sponsor. This is kind of post man work for us. We plan the entire event and provide what ever they wanted to contribute to old age home or orphanage. The actual cash will come from someone else.
Though in this case cash is involved, it is not going from our end. The service that we are doing here is a cashless service that is going to benefit the society. We collect the money from people who are willing to contribute and we organize an event and spend the money there. We are not the actual money contributors here but we take the task of getting it to the community in the form of any good service.
In most of the community activities, all we have to spend is some time. It may not be very easy for everyone to spend enough time for all the activities. I would like to take just one things as an example to explain how spending time becomes a great service to the community. We visit orphanages and old age homes regularly. In the place that we visit, it is just us who visit them regularly. Other than that they don't really get a chance to speak to any outside people. When we are there, they make use of us really well. With all the interactions that we had with the kids in orphanage and old people in old age homes, we identified that all they need is not cash or anything but someone to talk to them and spend time with them.
This is quite unique. You will be able to find people everywhere who can contribute cash for the basic needs of the people in orphanage and old age home. But the problem is that they will not be able to get exposure with the outside world because they don't really get a chance to speak to outside people. What we do is, we meet them regularly. At least monthly once we try to meet the old people in old age homes and have a neat conversation with them for a long time. The day we go there, we will cook them food and serve them. Along with serving food, we also have interactions with people there. That is what they expect. They say that more than food and money people is what they need. Some grand parents in those old age homes are very curious and they even make us sing songs for them.
I have also seen in many places where random people suddenly sit with beggars on the streets and start talking to them. Not everyone becomes beggars for no reason. People sit with them and talk to them to understand their pain and see if they can give them their life back. This is also one kind of help where it is not mandatory that cash should be given to help the beggars.
Doing help with the help of our body strength
People who are not well settled wealth wise can really do their contributions with the help of their body strength. In old age homes and orphanages there will be lots of opportunities where you can just spend your body efforts. In the old age home that we visit, there is a person who visits the old age home frequently. His house is nearby and he visits the home regularly during the lunch time to just serve food to the old people there. After the task is done, he will go home. He has been doing it for nearly a year now. He has kept it as a routine.
For doing such community service activities you need not necessarily have any money that you can spend. It is well and good if you can spend cash but if you think it is challenging for you, bodily help is more than enough and that can really create a great impact and it can be considered as one of the neat service to the society. Helping old age homes and orphanages transport things from one place to another is also of kind of a help rendered with the help of body strength. When you are travelling by a road and if you see someone struggling to lift things up and place it in their vehicle, you can take that as a chance and try to help them complete their activity.
To summarize, not all the community activities in the society will need cash. There are so many activities in the society that can be done by other different means where cash is not even a factor there. People who are having a thought that they are not well versed wealth wise, they can check out few of the above methods and render their help to the society.
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The community is not only about money, but there are various kinds of contributions that we can give to the community to make it more valuable.
In essence, our "activeness" will have a big impact on the community.
Some of the things we can do include:
And various other activities that are positive for the community.
By being an active member. What you do not have in cash you compensate with your effort and dedication to your community. Your community needs more than money to function adequately. There is a need for strong policies that benefit the entire community. Also, there is a need for active community members who will see to the implementation of these policies, goals, and ideas. A community is as strong as its members. So as a community member, you can contribute more than just money. Find where your skills and resources are needed and fill that gap
You can make cash for your community. You can do works that are paid in cash and donate the funds to the community.
I've seen many cases, especially in churches. Women come together, creat all kind of things and then sell those. This is just an example.
Asking for donations, organising a fundraiser is also an option. Raising awareness of community needs can get you help.
A little creativity is needed and people can accomplish a lot.
There are many ways to add value without spending money. All our actions hold some sort of value.
You can donate your time committing so many hours a week. This is a huge value and is far better than money. Doing small things that saves someone else doing it freeing them up for another task. A community functions like a team and if everyone chips in money is not a necessity.Everyone can offer different skills saving from spending any money.
By giving out your expertise and service for the benefit for the community adds a lot of value. Our skill and talent is often/way better than cash to be real.
Being a volunteer will surely be better than donating or spending cash just o add "value" to the community.
- If you're a nurse, the community needs you.
- If you're an engineer,
Everything of you, including your prayer adds value to the community without spending cash.
One doesn't necessarily need cash per se to help out in a community. There are a lit of things involved in maintaining a community. You can help by using your talent. If you know how to write articles, use that talent to spread awareness about the community you're trying to help out. You can also be an idea generator. You can give suggestions that will further improve the current status of your community.
To help out, we don't need to have fat wallets. All we need is a big heart full of desire to help.