By Kathryn Hawkins For Gimundo.com
Even if you write out a check to every charity that sends you a handwritten letter and a photo of a pleading child each Christmas, you can’t help thinking that it’s never enough –with the money you’ve got left over after paying for all your bills and basic necessities, you’ll never be able to fund a school in Africa, or to give a family enough food to keep their bellies full for even a single week. Your paltry donation might buy a few extra pens and stamps for the nonprofit organization you sent it to, but that’s about it.
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But don’t worry –even if you’re not in Donald Trump territory, you can still donate to a variety of great causes every day without spending a single penny. All you need is an Internet connection, and you’re good to go. Here are a few of our favorite free ways to give.
This site features click buttons for six different causes: hunger, child health, breast cancer, literacy, the rainforest, and animal rescue. The concept is simple: Just click the button for each cause once every day, and the site’s sponsors will make a charitable donation on your behalf. If you purchase an item from the site’s online store, they’ll donate even more. It takes just thirty seconds a day to make a difference in someone’s life without spending a cent –make this site a daily stop. Better yet, make it your home page, so you won’t start a single day without chipping in.
Ripple works exactly the same way as the Hunger Site, funding clean water, food, education, and a $100 loan with your daily click. Ripple also features a Google-powered search bar, which makes a donation every time you use it. To get all your friends in on the giving act, add Ripple’s “give” buttons directly to your blog or Facebook page.
We’ve written about this one before, but it’s such a great concept that we had to bring it up again. The site features a vocabulary game, where every correct answer you choose donates 20 grains of rice to an impoverished country. Play as long and as often as you like –you’re bound to pick up a few SAT words while saving the world.
Have you ever played the Facebook staple, Traveler IQ, where you score points by locating cities and landmarks on an unmarked map? This game is just like that, but better –with every correct answer, the site donates 10 cups of water to a poor country on your behalf. It might make you feel like an idiot for the first few rounds when you realize you can’t even locate the Statue of Liberty, but the fact that you’re making a difference should soften the blow a bit.
Are you passionate about fighting poverty? Want to save the whales? Are you committed to curing breast cancer?
No matter what your cause is, you can find a way to support it through the philanthropic search engine tool, GoodSearch. Simply type in the name of the organization you want to support, and GoodSearch will donate 50% of its advertising revenue to your charity of choice. With 54,000 organizations already registered, you’re bound to find a cause that you believe in. Once a few people hop on board, the funds add up fast: If a charity has 10,000 supporters who each use the search tool twice a day, that can add up to $73,000 in donations for the year.
Best of all, GoodSearch recently added a GoodShop tool, which allows you to donate a percentage of the cost of your purchases to the charity of your choice. The store choices include all the big names like Amazon, Best Buy, and Travelocity, so be sure to click through from the site whenever you’re planning a new purchase –you’ll finally have an excuse to feel good about shopping!