Crowdfunding provides a unique opportunity for concerned individuals to make meaningful changes in their communities—and around the world. Following the United Nations Sustainable Development Summit on Sept. 25, compassionate people now have more than a dozen great reasons to maximize the power of crowdfunding’s extended reach to drum up support for humanity, be part of an important movement and make an impact by standing up for worthy causes.
More than 150 world leaders gathered at the groundbreaking summit in New York and set a new sustainable development initiative in motion: Agenda 2030. Over the next 15 years, the United Nations is aiming to end hunger and poverty, protect the planet, uphold equality and ensure prosperity as part of 17 Sustainable Development Goals.
As part of YouCaring’s #Unleash Compassion campaign, we are working to help the United Nations achieve these significant goals. The United Nations initiative falls directly in line with YouCaring’s mission to assist and encourage people to help others overcome, heal and thrive.
Work Toward a Cause Bigger Than Yourself
The United Nations Sustainable Development Goals provide a framework for evaluating the major causes that affect our communities and the world as a whole.
- PR Newsletter reports that Americans rank feeding the hungry and veterans’ issues as the causes most important to them.
- Georgetown University reports that 8 in 10 women believe that supporting causes creates a sense of meaning and purpose in their lives.
- 56 percent of men and 63 percent of women view increased access to clean water as important, according to a Nielson Global Survey.
You can make a difference and fundraise for the greater good by tackling one of these causes through an online crowdfunding campaign. The options for fundraisers are endless and the need is real.
- Address poverty
Start by looking at programs in your community that cater to the poor. How are they modeled and run? Where do they get their funding? You can address poverty in your city by raising money for a homeless shelter, supporting a program that provides job training to the unemployed, or advocating on behalf of low-income communities. If you see a need in your community that no programs are currently addressing, consider starting your own organization. Crowdfunding is an effective vehicle for poverty relief, and it can provide you, the organizer, with a sense of purpose and power by helping you help others.
- Alleviate hunger
The second goal focuses on reducing hunger around the world and expanding people’s access to healthy food. According to Feeding America, 15 million kids in the U.S. live in food-insecure households. Through crowdfunding, you can work to expand school lunch programs for low-income students, open or donate to a soup kitchen, or orchestrate a food drive. The sky’s the limit. You can also broaden your efforts to address the issues facing the 795 million people around the world who do not have enough food to eat, according to statistics cited by the World Food Programme. One great way three San Francisco women are working to end hunger for those abroad is through a YouCaring fundraiser, Curry Without Worry: Feeding Nepal’s Earthquake Survivors. The campaign has raised more than $3,000 to help Curry Without Worry, a direct-service organization run entirely by volunteers, cook nutritious, life-saving food for more than 350 people every Tuesday in Kathmandu. Crowdfunding for organizations that reduce hunger can literally save lives!
- Promote health and well-being
You can help to address this development goal by starting a medical fundraiser for someone in need. When families or individuals are faced with medical expenses they can’t afford, many have nowhere to turn to raise money for their treatment. That’s where your campaign can make a difference. Another option is starting a fundraiser to raise money for medical research. This can be a great way to honor someone you lost to a disease that currently does not have a cure, or you can use your fundraiser to support multiple research efforts within the scientific community. By donating to an organization that either looks for cures to diseases or expands access to treatments already available, you can do your part to promote good health.
- Enhance education
Fundraisers focused on this development goal have the potential to benefit a wide variety of programs or organizations. Consider creating a scholarship fund for students who may not otherwise be able to continue his or her education, raising money for an after school program that provides at-risk youth with mentorship and extracurricular opportunities, or supporting a nonprofit that helps students with special needs. You can even consider raising money to build a school! Check out some of the education fundraisers on YouCaring for inspiration, including Anuj Rathi’s fundraiser to build a school that educates 100 students in the remote villages in the Maharashtra state of India.
- Promote gender equality
One of the easiest ways to work toward gender equality is by educating women. Start a fundraiser for a scholarship that benefits women who would not otherwise be able to get an education. You can raise money for a woman from a country that does not provide secondary education to women or create a program at your local high school that encourages women to pursue degrees in the hard sciences. You might consider raising money to support or create a women’s shelter, especially one that provides services to victims of domestic abuse, or to fund a program that provides consent education to young people. There are countless ways to make the world safer for women.
- Increase access to clean water and sanitation
Raise money for nonprofits that work to expand access to vital resources at home and abroad. San Francisco-based nonprofit Lava Mae is an example of an organization that embodies the effort to improve sanitation and offer clean water and hygiene. Lava Mae’s mission is to provide dignity to those experiencing homelessness, which in turn opens up opportunities. Meanwhile, in Los Angeles, the Operation Panty Drop campaign works to improve sanitation and restore dignity to homeless women by providing new underwear. Start a campaign to support one of these types of nonprofits, or raise funds to build a well or irrigation system where it’s needed or supply clean drinking water to communities around the world.
What Cause Motivates You?
The United Nations Sustainable Development Goals comprise a list of issues worthy of our attention. Crowdfunding can provide you with the resources necessary to take action and fundraise for causes close to your heart. Start a fundraiser that supports one of these important goals today.