By Brian McKay
Want to make a difference in a developing country, but not sure how? There are lots of ways that we can help those less fortunate around the world, most of which are much easier than we may think. Here are just a few ways that you can lend a helping hand.
Travel to less developed countries
One simple way to make a difference is to travel to less developed countries. By paying for accommodation, buying local food and purchasing souvenirs, you’ll be putting money into the pockets of everyday folk and making a difference whilst experiencing the thrill of travelling. For many less developed countries, tourism is becoming an essential part of their growth. Say no to the popular first world travel destinations and try somewhere off the beaten path.
You can go one step further than travelling by volunteer abroad. This may include teaching English to those less fortunate or helping with a manual labour task such as building a well. Such volunteer tasks don’t require any skills or qualifications – you’ll most likely be teaching English to kids that already have a basic grasp and any manual labour job will be very basic. However, by offering that extra helping hand you’ll be making a big difference whilst still getting the experience of travelling. There are companies such as Global Cross Road that specialise in such volunteer programmes.
Give to a specialist charity
There are plenty of charities that you can give to in order to make a difference. Consider a cause that means a lot to you. There are charities that are catered to specific causes such as the National Endowment for Democracy that helps to increase the democratic rights of developing countries. You may even find a specific project such as the construction of an orphanage or helping someone ill to get medical treatment they wouldn’t otherwise be able to get. These specific causes may be far better for your sense of fulfilment than giving to a general charity or government in which you may not necessarily know where your money is going.
The simplest way that you can help is by spreading awareness of foreign issues. By sharing things on social media and discussing causes with your friends you may influence others to make a difference too. You may be able to notify a company or figure with more influence and wealth than yourself to help out. Obviously, it’s far better if you can donate or help out on top of spreading awareness. However, that isn’t to say that you shouldn’t spread awareness of issues that you yourself can do nothing to help – there may be someone else out there that can make an impact, especially in the case of legal cases and curing the sick.