How To Take Meaningful Action in Your Community

Thanks to smartphones and social media, most of us are now connected to others more than ever. But even as we get more connected in the digital world, many of us still feel removed from the “real” world.

Social media makes you aware of what’s going on in your community, but does it help you become more active in the causes you care about? In fact, social media can be part of the solution, and there are many more ways to take action offline as well.

Connect with Your Community

No one can be everywhere and do everything, so the first rule to getting more involved is to hone in on whatever cause you feel most passionate about.

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Do you want to help underprivileged children, serve people who are experiencing homelessness, clean up your town, or promote safety in your neighborhood?

Whatever you’re most concerned about, start channeling your efforts by finding a local organization that meets those needs. If you don’t know where to look, try searching online through websites that connect volunteers with local organizations. If you can’t find one, that may be a sign for you to create a new group to tackle the issue.

Organize an Action

You’re ready and willing to be more involved, but do you know what steps to take next? If an organization already exists that’s working on your cause, call them up and ask what they need.

They may have volunteer opportunities, or they may be open to any ideas you have. If you’re creating a new group, start by brainstorming and writing up a “business” plan, including what you want to accomplish and what it will take.

When you’re on your own or volunteering for an organization that has a limited budget, you’ll run into the question of how to finance your action. You may want to hold a fundraiser, but even if you donate the money yourself, be sure to set a budget and find ways to stretch your dollar.

There are many different ways to support your community. One idea is to support children in your area by becoming a teacher. If you need to earn a teaching degree, online programs provide convenience and flexibility. Before getting started, check the licensure requirements in your state.

Spread the Word

Along with the right tools, you also need a strategy, especially when it comes to getting other people involved. Non-profit leaders tell Forbes that consistency and word-of-mouth are still top ways that organizations get members of their community engaged.

You can spread the word the old-fashioned way through flyers, but this is also where digital media can be extremely helpful.

It’s easy (and free!) to share events and activities on social media, and Social Media Examiner recommends some of the best ways to get even more engagement.

Ideas for Action

 If there aren’t any immediate actions that jump out at you, one of the best ways you can help is to organize a drive for resources that a particular charity needs.

For example, a women’s shelter may need personal care items, or an organization that serves children may need new stuffed animals for the children. If you want to serve your community more generally, we love the popularity of Little Free Libraries and Blessing Boxes.

The idea is to build a box that you put in a central location. Once it’s built, stock it with books or nonperishable food, then community members can take what they need while others can restock it as they wish.

The great thing about these projects is that they keep providing resources for your community long after the initial work is done. Most often, the hardest part of getting more involved is taking that first step. Once you do, the results of your effort will start to show, and the opportunities to stay involved will keep coming your way.

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