Online social platform forgood.co.za, which connects people to causes around the country, is encouraging South Africans to spend their lockdown making a difference through virtual volunteering. From designing a home workout routine for kids, to helping a substance abuse prevention programme with financial management, virtual volunteering is a way for South Africans to create impact, without leaving their homes.
“We’re living through a particularly trying time in history, but it’s also a time where we are likely to see the best side of humanity. We need to stay behind doors to beat this, but we also want to help those in need. Virtual volunteering offers an easy way to create social impact, while remaining indoors and safe – you don’t even have to get out of your pyjamas,” says Andy Hadfield, CEO of forgood.
Virtual or remote volunteering involves volunteering from where you are, taking on important digital tasks like social media support, marketing, writing, training, design, data capturing, providing legal advice and more. The forgood platform acts as a central point, connecting the skills and talents of individuals and businesses with non-profit, social impact organisations in need of those specific skills. The platform also offers a safe way to donate money to verified non-profits – a good option for those who do not have time to give.
“Sometimes the best way to help, is to just give money,” says Hadfield. “With Covid-19 wreaking havoc all over the world, committed donor funds are drying up for our local charities and non-profit organisations. That’s where you come in – even a small cash donation can go a long way. Small donations add up, and most non-profits, no matter their size, need all the help they can get.”
Forgood have launched a dedicated #Coronavirus campaign, which aims to highlight all the relevant needs that are posted daily by the 400 plus non-profit organisations signed up on the platform.
“We know that South Africans are generous, that they want to help others. The struggle comes with figuring out how to do that – people aren’t sure how to give back in a way that is actually helpful, especially when they can’t even leave their home. The key is finding a place where your particular skills are needed,” says Hadfield. “Forgood facilitates this connection in a way that creates real value for both parties.”
The following options are available via their online platform:
- Volunteering your time or skills virtually – all you need is the internet. If you can’t find something you’re passionate about, create a personalised offer and forgood will match it out to causes in need of your skills.
- Donate money – as a result of the lockdown, charities and non-profits who usually rely on donations will struggle to secure essentials, including food and hygiene products. Donating money helps these causes stay afloat, allowing them to purchase these items themselves. Donations from R50 are accepted.
- You can even go online shopping for a Cause, getting critical resources and goods delivered to them and the communities they support.
- If you’d prefer to support a particular theme, you can help feed children, help NPOs stay afloat during the lockdown or help get sanitation products to communities in need.