What’s the best way to help?

Person helping another up a mountain

I’m looking for a good cause, but not just any good cause, the one that will make the most difference based on values that I think matter.

My approach to charity has been changing over the last few years. Previously I’ve raised money through sponsored physical challenges but as I posted on LinkedIn at the time there is a limit as to how sustainable that is; At some point either Charity fatigue will set in amongst my network or I simply get to the stage where the amount of training hours outstrips the return in terms of donations to be an optimum use of my time.

The introspection on this was sparked after I heard Sam Harris interview Will MacAskill on his podcast ‘Waking Up’. Will is a philosopher and the founder of effective altruism. He had some thought provoking ideas on how we could consider the value of our time. It’s a consideration we need to introduce to people as early in life as possible  – he also set up 80,000 hours to do just that.

So how else can I maximise my support for a cause? I could donate a fixed amount a month from my salary working along the lines of the give what you can movement. While that may be the most effective altruistic thing I could do it doesn’t quite tick the boxes for feeling like I doing something.

I could consider committing my time directly to support a charity and personally getting involved but for me it needs to be more than just an exchange of my time in lieu of a financial donation.

So that’s the new plan, not only identifying a worthy cause but also one that I and my specific skill set can really make a difference to.

I’ll let you know how it goes


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