10 things you can do to make poverty history

Today I’m participating in  Blog Action Day along with thousands of other people blogging around the world, on the theme of poverty. I have read that nearly half the world lives in poverty, and 800 million people go hungry every day.

So what can you do to help? First, make a decision to do something. Then, be creative by using your skills and resources to make a difference. I’ve put together a list of ten simple things you can do, to get you started. Pick one, or two, or three…or come up with your own ideas to use your unique skills.

The joy of clean water. Image originally uploaded by Uncultured on Flickr

The joy of clean water. Image originally uploaded by Uncultured on Flickr

1. Do what you can. Dream big. Start small. We all have busy schedules. Budgets. Family demands. Or we just never get around to it. Step out, put a date in your diary, and do what you can.

2. Learn about poverty. World Poverty for dummies is on my reading list. I hear that it’s very good. You could also try The End of Poverty by Jeffrey Sachs or in Australia, The Good Giving Guide by Lyn Amy & Mary Pearce.

3.  Speak out. Write letters to officials. Educate friends and family about poverty and hunger.

4.  Volunteer your skills and time with a charity or NGO. Find out if your company has any corporate philanthropy or volunteering programs.

5. Purchase Christmas presents from businesses that contribute to a better planet. For instance Rise Up Productions

6. Sponsor a child. I have a friend who has a sponsor child for each of her children.

7. Contribute to the Woman’s Investment project to help me fund a trust bank for a group of poor entrepreneurial women in the Philippines. All you need to do is write a sentence, spread the word, or make a $10 donation (pass the hat around with a group of friends, if you don’t have $10 yourself)

8. Look through your home and find something to sell on eBay, then give the proceeds to charity. Make something by hand and sell it on etsy

9. Get together with a few friends or colleagues to work on a project. Be inventive. Decide on a charity and work together to raise awareness and funds.

10. Join blog action day yourself and write a post on the theme of poverty