Although itâs International Womenâs Day, this isnât about mother natureâs monthly giftâ¦ itâs about the journey of setting up my first direct debit donation.
Iâve worked in the charity sector for almost 3 years now and Iâve not yet started a direct debit – something I feel terribly guilty about. Iâve spent the last year looking for that perfect charity to give my cherished Â£3 a month to. It seems silly to care so much about such a small amount of money when Iâd easily throw it away on an extra serving of guac in my wrap, but to me this was a symbol of my first real job, having a real wage and having the choice to spend my money wherever I damn like.
Iâve spent a year looking for my perfect charity. Working at GOOD Agency, I have exposure to many organisations. I know how where their funding goes, and I know so many heart-breaking stories that make me want to donate everything, including my cat, to a person in need, but nothing seemed like it was enough. I knew my Â£3 wouldnât make much of a difference, but I wanted to feel like Iâd really changed something.
Who would have thought it would take a huge media scandal to make me drop my purse string and sign up to a lifetime of giving?
When the Oxfam scandal broke I immediately felt angry. I know the misconceptions around charities and how they run, and I knew this news would damage the industry even further. I found myself arguing with friends, sticking up for Oxfam, and the other charities who came under fire, even though I had no connection or loyalty with any of them. It seemed so bizarre to me that you would hinder the many due to the actions of the few (I channelled a bit of Corbyn in me there).
And thatâs when I decided to make my first monthly gift.
Because I not only wanted Oxfam to know that people would stand by them, but I felt my measly Â£3 would fill that much needed gap when thousands were cancelling their regular gifts by the minute.
This meant I fulfilled both my protesting desires, let a charity know theyâre still loved and helped ensure that vital funding isnât cut.