For the past few months we have been working on a social impact program that launched internationally. While I am close, I’m not there yet so keep your eyes peeled in January for that but seeing as we are in the season of giving I wanted to do a concentrated version of this program in an ode to an advent calendar to see what kind of change the coworking community (and their communities) could incite. Seeing as the coworking industry already has a good grasp on community, making waves and threading the charge with change I figured there was no better group to start with.
Instead of doing a 12 days of Christmas or holiday countdown where you get a piece of chocolate every time you move the pin, we are doing it a little differently this year. We are doing a reverse countdown—where you give something back to your local community each day. We are taking 5 minutes to tweet about a cause, write a letter to a service person overseas, putting a box in your business to collect cans for a local food back—something stupid simple and seemingly small but MATTERS TO SOMEONE.
We want to be the bridge for change and we understand that change starts with individuals. If each individual does something good, it is going to radiate into their immediate sphere of influence and then out to their local community. Imagine if we all did something good for someone else (just because we can) and our spheres started to overlap with others spheres…the field of charity, good and change began to engulf the map, the globe. If the norm became charity and hospitality- on a human level.
I fully believe philanthropy starts at home. It doesn’t have to be monetary. It can be something as simple as tweeting about a cause so they get more visibility and their awareness goes up. It can be cleaning out your old towel close (before your family comes in for the holidays) and dropping them off at your local animal shelter rather than tossing them in the trash bin. Volunteering your time and under utilized resources (space owners im looking at you) to local nonprofits and causes that could use the extra hands and real estate is another free way you can evoke change.
So here’s the calendar. This is not a big ask, but a small one. If you can take part in even one of these days, you will be making an impact. If you can carve out 5 minutes each day during your lunch break to post on social media about each of these causes (because let’s be honest- we know you are scrolling any way) you will be making an impact. And if you are feeling all gungho an want to take this on as your own personal goal for the next 12 days like I am – you will be a pillar for chance and influence for good. You will be making an impact. Change starts with you.
12 days of Charity Calendar
December 1st – Local animal shelter
December 2nd – Retirement community in your area
December 3rd – First responders – service men and women overseas, nurses, police officers, ect
December 4th – Women’s shelter
December 5th – Make a wish
December 6th – Children’s unit at local hospital (toy drive, letters, etc)
December 7th – Saint Jude
December 8th – Local homeless shelter
December 9th – Local Foster home & orphanages
December 10th – Red Cross
December 11th – Doctors without Borders
December 12th – UNICEF
We’d love it if you tagged us in your tweets and photos if you chose to take part in our 12 days of charity. Feel free to adapt and swap in causes that are close to your own heart.
Ideas for quick and easy ways to incite change
- Post on social media about your favorite cause
- Drop off unused toiletries ( those travel bottles you have been hoarding from hotels, suzan)
- Write a thank you/appreciation letter to those that may not hear it enough ( janitors, police officers, mail carriers, care givers, assistants, etc)
- Host a fundraiser on facebook for a cause close to your heart
- Send an anonymous bouquet of flowers to someone going through a rough time
- Drop off old sheets towel or bedding at an animal shelter
- Call and see if your local school has lunch balances that need paid off
- Volunteer at your local soup kitchen or shelter
- Adopt a less fortunate child/ family/ classroom for the holidays (think angel tree)
- Drop off old professional clothes that no longer suit you or fit at a women’s/homless shelter
- In lieu of a holiday gift- donate to a cause in someone’s name or have them do so for you
- Place a box in your business to collect cans and non perishables to donate
- Drop off stuffed animals or like minded toys to a police station for children impacted by crime/ disaster
- Volunteer to walk a shelter dog on your lunch break
- Send a food gift card (grocery store or restaurant) to your local first responders
- Write a positive review on your 3 favorite small business google or yelp profiles
- Drop off flowers at a retirement home
- Volunteer at a community center