Giving for good this Christmas
As the end of the year quickly approaches us, businesses throughout New Zealand will be looking at thanking their clients and showing gratitude in what has been an extremely tough 2020. But is there a better way to give this Xmas?
Bottles of booze will be wrapped, gift boxes will be sent, and branded items will fly around the country as we all look to make sure our clients and suppliers know just how important they are to us. Small gestures can be huge, and it's always important to thank those in our circles that have made 2020 just that little bit better. However, this year in particular has shone a light on alot of kiwis that are doing it tough - and there is no time like Christmas to look outward when it comes to giving. Increasingly, businesses and clients really appreciate seeing social good being done, and there are a huge range of fantastic charities around that you are able to donate to on your client's behalf. This year, instead of sending out our annual Christmas gift, 543 are going to direct those funds into a few donations to charities - and we'd really encourage anyone who was thinking of sending us a gift to do the same.
With New Zealand having 27,000+ charities - the real trick becomes figuring out where to send a Christmas donation. From child poverty, to medical advances, there are literally thousands of worthy causes to get behind. If you're so inclined, you can dive into the Charities Register to have a look through all of New Zealand's charities, but below we've provided a few thoughts to help you land on the charity that is right for you.
What's important right now?
Choosing where to give probably starts at having a think about what is going on in the world right now, and what charities might be needing help in this moment in time. 2020 has obviously seen alot of families fall on tough times, so for us a charity like KidsCan, or The Salvation Army makes alot of sense. Housing is also a burning topic at the moment - so Habitat for Humanity could be another good option, or take a look at The Kindness Institute - which focuses on overcoming anxiety, fear and stress. Equally, you may recognise that alot of attention will be going the way of those charities this year, and so might look towards something like Canteen or Forest & Bird to make sure those other areas in need continue to get some backing while the spotlight is pointed elsewhere.
What's important to you?
Ultimately everyone has their own passions and life experiences that will guide their giving. You might want to get in behind climate change and our future leaders with Generation Zero or perhaps you have had someone close to you touched with dementia and Alzheimers NZ holds a special place in your heart. If there is something very important to you, you're bound to find a fantastic charity in New Zealand to get behind.
Go local - or look abroad?
For 543 one of the first things we did was have a look around for charities in our region. The Hawke's Bay Foundation, with their approach of spreading donations across a range of charities locally was a natural fit. You'll be able to find your own local charities with a little bit of looking, and in 2020 it does seem fitting to support local. With that said, New Zealand's response to Covid-19 has put us in an enviable position globally, and there are alot of overseas causes that will have increasing need of help. The poorest countries in the world will be the last to get a vaccine, so something like Unicef for example will remain important.
What is happening around you?
The last little consideration that we looked at was where our colleagues and fellow businesses have directed their giving this year. We're truly stoked to have seen both our competitors and friends already donating to Surf Life Saving NZ and Send A Little Smile. Those are both charities we could easily get behind, but knowing some other awesome businesses have backed them, also let's us have a look around at other options to share the love this Christmas season.
At the end of the day, if you are choosing to support a charity this year instead of send out gifts this Christmas, who you donate to will be a really personal choice - and there shouldn't really be a wrong answer! Above are just a handful of example options we've included - hopefully they spark a light bulb moment for you about where you'd like to give this year. Have a look around, understand what the cause you are getting behind stands for and give for good in 2020.