Millions of children around the world lack access to basic necessities, such as food, clean water, sanitation, medicine, shelter, education, books, fun, family, laughter, love; however, there is hope. You can help poor children have a better future in several ways. Thus, offering your time and efforts to children can have a great impact. You can also raise money or donate goods to a charity. If you are willing to make a commitment, you can become a personal advocate for a child in need through mentoring and fostering. No effort is too small or too great to do.
Method 1 of 3: Volunteer
Step 1. Teach underprivileged students
Education is one of the best predictors of success in children. You can help struggling students succeed in school by donating your time or money as a tutor or normal person. You could teach them reading, spelling, current affairs, algebra, writing, cursive, math, science, history, or English as a second language.
- You can contact anyone on your local school board or the schools themselves to see if they have an after-school club or program to teach kids.
- Some people choose to go abroad to teach poor children who do not have access to good schools.
Step 2. Organize a clothing and book drive
Many children do not have their basic needs met. Thus, new clothes, books, and toys can make a big difference in their lives. Together with a group of people, collect some new or little-used things for the children. Identify a local charity, such as the Salvation Army, that is willing to distribute them for you. Some things you can collect are:
- school supplies
- holiday gifts
- new shoes
- coats, sweaters, and other cold-weather clothing
- musical instruments
Step 3. Sponsor a poor child
There are almost 400 million children around the world living in extreme poverty. Thanks to a small monthly donation, you can help a child pay for food, school, medicine and clothes. There are many charities that offer to help you sponsor a child, both locally and abroad. Some of the reputable ones are:
- Children International
- World vision
- Save the children
Step 4. Contact local charities
Some charities may need volunteers to help organize inventories, monitor events, and distribute aid. Call the local branch of a child welfare charity to see what they need. Ask what is the best way to volunteer your time.
- If you are a professional with particular skills, you could offer your services for free to help reduce the administrative costs of the charity. This will allow the organization to dedicate its resources to helping children. Some services you could offer are accounting, staffing, and legal assistance.
- If the charity is holding a fundraiser, you can offer to help. You might be asked to help sell tickets, run a booth, or clean.
Method 2 of 3: Raising money for a charity
Step 1. Decide what kind of help you want to offer
Money can go a long way in helping a charity reach poor children; however, you should think about where you want your money to go. Many charities give you the option to choose how to spend it. Thus, you can choose to send your money to:
- tuition and school fees
- medical care
- books and toys
- clean water
- support for an orphanage
Step 2. Pick a respected children's cause to support
There are many charities for different children. Some focus on a specific cause, such as education or medical care. Others are for the general welfare of children. Before donating money to a charity, do your research to make sure they are providing the majority of their funds to your cause. Check out the Charity Navigator to see if they have at least a three-star rating. Some reputable charities are:
- Children in Need
- St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital
- Children’s Miracle Network
- Youth Law Center
- Reach Out and Read
Step 3. Publicize your cause
While you can give out of your own pocket, you could also encourage other people to donate. Advertise the charity of your choice to your friends and family. Encourage other people to contribute so that your money has a greater impact. You could consider advertising your cause through:
- social networks (for example, on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram)
- video requests
- your personal website
Step 4. Sell things
A great way to raise money for kids is to sell something and give the proceeds to the charity. You can set up a booth in front of your house, at a school, or at a farmers market. Advertise your sale as an aid to a charity. Thus, you may find that strangers are willing to buy things just to help a good cause. Some different types of sales are:
- sale of second-hand objects
- craft products (for example, bracelets or scarves)
- bake sale
- lemonade stand
Step 5. Collectively fund donations
Crowdfunding platforms allow you to create a special page to raise money for the non-profit organization of your choice. These web pages can attract many small donations from a large group of people. There are many crowdfunding websites that specialize in fundraising for charities. You could consider using:
- FundIt. Buzz (UK)
Method 3 of 3: Become a Personal Advocate
Step 1. Become a mentor
There are several organizations that help children in need connect with stable adults who can guide them through school and life. These programs offer a life support system to at-risk youth. Thus, children with a mentor are more likely to graduate from high school and less likely to use drugs or alcohol. Some mentoring programs are:
- Big Brothers Big Sisters of America
- Children’s Aid Society
- Stand Up For Kids
- mentoring program from your local department of children's services
Step 2. Apply to be a Court Appointed Special Advocate (CASA)
Children in foster care often do not have legal guardians to represent them. Thus, a special advocate appointed by the court is a representative who looks after the interests of the minor before the court. While he is not an attorney, he represents foster children in court rather than a parent or legal guardian. CASA often have personal ties to their children, making sure to protect the rights and needs of minors.
- You can find a CASA program near you on the CASA for Children website.
- You will have to undergo a 30-hour training program before a case is assigned to you.
Step 3. Consider fostering a minor
If you have the space and finances to host a minor, you can do it. Foster care seeks to offer a temporary and stable home to a child who has been separated from his parents. The reception process takes months; However, a dedicated foster parent can change the life of a disadvantaged child by providing support, stability, and consistency during a troubled time in their life.
- If you are in the United States, you will need to apply to be a foster parent with the Department of Children's Services or the Department of Social Services in your state. You will also need to complete training and pass a home inspection and background check.
- If you are in the UK, you can contact your local administration for more information or you can find a host agency near you. You will need to pass a verification from the Disclosure and Barring Service, as well as a medical exam. You may have to go through training.
- If you are in Australia, you will need to submit an expression of interest form and an application to the Department of Child Protection and Family Support in your state. You will have to pass a background check and a training session.
- If you are in Canada, you should check with your provincial government to determine the proper reception procedure. You may be asked to complete a background check, medical exam, and home interview.
Step 4. Start your own non-profit organization
If you are passionate and committed to helping disadvantaged children, you might consider starting your own nonprofit charity. Starting a charity requires a variety of jobs, including preparing to pay excise taxes, raising funds, managing resources, and taking care of the organizational structure. Before considering whether this is the right decision for you, you should ask yourself:
- What kind of services could this charity offer to my local area?
- Is there any other charity in my area that offers the same or similar services? If that's the case, you may just want to volunteer for that charity.
- How will the charity be funded?
- Who will you need to help you run the charity? Think of other managers, fundraisers, accountants, tax attorneys, and volunteers.
- Find other people who are passionate about this cause. By working together, you can increase your chances of success.
- Always verify that charities have at least a three-star rating on the Charity Navigator. This ensures that the charity spends most of its money on the children and not on administrative or fundraising costs.
- Remember that disadvantaged children often need various forms of help. Thus, it is unlikely that they will be able to afford adequate medical care, legal aid or educational material.
- You may not be able to save all children, but you can make a difference in one's life.
- Always work with reputable charities that are registered as non-profit organizations.