With Mandela Day being top of mind, Team Naked has been chatting about ways that we try to give back to our communities throughout the year. Naked is invested in helping those around us by building insurance for good, but over and above this, we aim to make giving back part of our lives as individuals.
It’s easy to think that making a difference in your community requires a lot of money, time and effort, but in reality there are many things we can do to help those in need without breaking the bank or fundamentally disrupting our lives. Here are some tips from the Naked team on how you can make giving back a part of your everyday life.
How can I make a difference with spare cash?
The smallest donations can make the biggest difference to someone in need. There are many ways that we can make a high impact with limited funds on a regular basis. Here are some options:
Use automated savings
Financial institutions are spending large amounts of effort to get South Africans into a saving mindset. Some of us find that using FNB’s Bank Your Change® feature to round up all our normal card swipes and divert the extra cash to savings monthly is a great way to put money away. Putting your banked change into a savings pocket that you can dedicate wholly to donating is low effort and doesn’t take too long to add up to making a real difference.
Knowing where to send your cash can be tough, luckily we wrote about effective altruism some time ago and this 6 minute read will teach you all about giving money in a way that maximises impact.
Opt-in when online-stores have “checkout charity” options
The number of companies that are building giving into their sales journeys has grown significantly over the years. With something as simple as checking a box, you can effect positive change. Here are some of our favourite ways to do this:
- ReSpek Nature plant spekbooms to absorb carbon emissions caused by online shopping deliveries. They’ve partnered with big retailers such as Netflorist and Geewiz to allow customers to add the cost of planting a spekboom to their online orders.
- The Beautiful Gate is Takealot’s charity dedicated to providing care and support to vulnerable children and families. Just by checking a box when you place an order you can donate R5 to this cause.
- Add Hope was started by KFC to fight childhood hunger. All you have to do is add hope at the drive-thru window and you can help feed a hungry child.
Make giving a friendship thing
Incorporating giving back into your social circle is a great way to extend giving beyond your own personal means and rally your friends around great causes. Some great ways to do this are:
- Ask your family and friends to make a donation to your favourite charity as a birthday gift.
- If you’re in a competitive friend group, you may be no stranger to betting pools and games involving prize funds (Naked’s annual Fantasy Premier League is hotly contested every year). An easy commitment you can make is to donate a percentage of the total pot to a charity that your friend group believes in.
How can I make a difference with time?
Volunteering time is one of the most mutually rewarding ways to give back. But it can also be tough with the demands of day-to-day life. Many not-for-profit organisations are creating avenues that allow those with limited free time to still make a difference to their community. “Micro-volunteering” refers to the process of providing short-term, low-commitment opportunities to maximise impact and create value. Here are some examples we love:
- Download the Be My Eyes app which connects visually impaired individuals in need of sighted support with volunteers around the world. Just by signing up you can assist those in need at a moment's notice, only taking a few minutes out of your day.
- Probably the highest impact for the time investment – sign up to be an organ donor, registration takes one minute and every donor can save 7 lives.
- Head to your nearest South African National Blood Service centre and donate blood. It helps a lot more than you think – there are often shortages of blood.
- Have a look at micro-volunteering opportunities on forgood. They have dozens of causes that need support from micro-volunteers across many different requirements.
- Like and share posts from your favourite causes to expand their reach and get more people aware of their efforts.
Making a difference with stuff:
Most of us have things lying around in our cupboards or collecting dust in our homes that could make the world of difference to someone in need. Like with giving time, it can sometimes feel overwhelming. It can be tricky to get your stuff together, package and deliver it to the desired recipient with everything else we have going on. Some of the things the Naked team do to make this kind of giving part of our everyday lives are:
Buy extra food at the drive-thru
Add a couple of extra items to your order at the drive-thru to hand out to anyone in need on your commute.
Recycle just a little bit
Informal waste collectors are some of the most valuable members of our community in terms of making a positive environmental impact. By simply separating out your recyclable items (glass, cans, paper and plastic) and placing them in a transparent bag on the top of your bin, you can help maximise their effort in addition to contributing to a cleaner environment and reduced waste in landfills.
Give away things you don’t need or want
In addition to the micro-volunteering opportunities mentioned above, forgood has a simple online platform that links people with goods to donate and charities that need them. You can filter on where you’d like to donate and what you have to give – charities will often even collect the items from a location of your choosing.
TIP: If you have items to donate and know where you’d like to send them but don’t have the time or means to deliver them, Uber Connect is a fantastic way to seamlessly get your items to their destination.
Naked is built in such a way that you make a difference just by signing up as a customer
Naked is built in such a way that left over premiums don’t come to us as profit (unlike traditional insurers), it goes directly to causes that our customers choose. By switching your insurance to Naked, you are already making a difference to your community.
So whether it’s time, money or stuff, donating has never been easier. And just by following these simple steps, you can effect massive positive change in your community.