Rather than just rattling a tin at people or ‘chugging’ (charity mugging people on the streets, demanding they hand over their details and earning commission), here are some better ways to support small ethical charities. If you prefer to give anonymously, donate via Charities Aid Foundation. Set up an individual giving account then you can tick the ‘make my details anonymous’ box and donate to any charity you like. Charity Commission lists how charities spend your donations.
- Buy from clothing brands that help animals. Next time you need a new t-shirt, hoodie or beanie, buy from companies that sell organic versions, and use profits to help animals.
- Good at sewing or knitting? Snuggles Project has free patterns on its website to download, so you can make blankets for animal shelters that are registered. They then get free donations, so pets don’t have to sleep on hard steel floors, while waiting for loving homes.
- Mutley’s Snaps is a talented dog photographer in Scotland. He takes photos of adopted staffies for an annual calendar, to help change mindsets. No snarling teeth, just happy smiles! One Californian town takes photos of local dogs, then sells a calendar to residents and visitors, to raise money for local animal rescue.
- The Humane League is a US charity for farm animal welfare, started by this man who says focusing on the good gets more donations. Rather than leave people guilty, scared, depressed or traumatised. If you’re upset by factory farming, join Fast Action Network to have supermarkets & MPs change policy.
- Charity Bank offers simple savings accounts, with short application forms. It’s a cross between a charity and a bank, so you save money while helping to fund local community projects.
- Sign up your small charity to Everyclick. Supporters then just switch search engines, and sponsors donate, each time you search.
- Ask for seed grants (up to a certain amount) from The Sanctuary Angels, The Pollination Project or Awesome Foundation. Sometimes a small grant is all that’s needed.
- Vegan bake sales are popular the world over, as everyone of any dietary choice loves cookies and cake, and it’s a great way to raise money for your local animal sanctuary. Obviously you have to get the legal and food safety info right. But after that, it’s plain sailing. Just find a few nice recipes and a local talented baker or two, and show your town or village just how delicious vegan baked goods can be. You can then choose a local charity to support (a farm sanctuary, animal shelter or homeless shelter etc) and they benefit too.
Sell Organic Cotton Message T-Shirts
Teemill is a company set up by the founders of an organic cotton clothing brand. It enables anyone to set up an online store selling organic cotton t-shirts and sweatshirts, with their own graphics printed onto them. Some people use the site as a business, and others use it to raise funds for their favourite cause. Just load your designs, take some photos, then they send out the t-shirts on your behalf, paying your charity the money earned. Most orders are shipped the next day, with worldwide delivery.
At end of life, the t-shirts can be sent back to recycle into new ones, and all are printed using renewable energy, sent in zero waste packaging. They are also printed using renewable energy and sent in plastic-free packaging. Beetroot Sauvage and Equalkind both help animal charities, through sale of their organic cotton t-shirts: