Effective change does not happen overnight, no matter how worthy the cause. A person might think that only donors with large amounts of money can make a big impact for their cause. In fact, small acts and gestures from everyday people can make just as significant an impact—sometimes more so. There are still plenty of ways to donate that don’t involve writing a check. Here are some of the ways you and I can support a cause and help to change our world for the better:

Share Our Time and Talents

Many nonprofit organizations need help from professionals such as writers, lawyers, contractors, and more—but cannot afford to pay for that help. If you have a skill or professional talent, why not use it to help others? Can you help sort recyclables for a couple of hours at a shelter? Are you a lawyer who could advise a non-profit on a pro bono basis? Musicians might volunteer to play at benefit concerts and events, or an office admin could help with that backlog of filing. Your donation of time and skill is just as valuable as cash. 

Carefully Choose Where to Shop

When I buy a cup of coffee, clothes, groceries, or other merchandise, I realize I’m supporting the brand I’m buying from. Have you thought about that? When shopping, I try to make sure the company I choose to buy from is trying to make a difference in our world. Many companies use a portion of their profits to support causes such as ending deforestation, supporting LGBTQ+ and women’s rights, equality for people of color, and civil rights. Choose where you spend your limited funds for your family’s and your needs by shopping brands and companies that actively give back to a cause you support.

Donate Goods

Chances are good that you have items in your home that you no longer need or use. Collect clothes, books, electronics, toys, and even canned goods and then donate them to a non-profit organization or charity. Such donations may qualify for an income tax deduction at the same time as helping those in need. Beyond things you can find in your home, you can make a huge difference by donating your hair or blood. You can affect millions of lives by making small donations like these. 

Use Social Media Platforms

In this digital age, almost everyone is active on social media such as Facebook, Twitter, WhatsApp, or Instagram. Many people use these platforms to share family news and photos. You could use your sites for good: advocate for a cause you support using by sharing links to their website, informing friends and followers how they can donate, and providing petitions they can sign to enable change. Not only are you spreading awareness and information about charities and causes you care about: you don’t have to spend a dime to do it.

This article was originally published on https://MichaelLuzich.org