Sometimes, people feel the need to help their fellow citizens but aren’t sure how to get started. For adults who wish to add meaning to their lives by assisting the needy and less fortunate, there are plenty of ways to make a difference. The good news is that you don’t have to spend money or devote every spare minute to the effort.
It’s possible to change someone else’s life for the better by cosigning on a student loan, serving as a mentor, donating time to a local charity that’s already up and running, or starting a community service organization that serves a unique need. There’s no right or wrong way to improve the daily lives of others. All it takes to get underway is a desire to be of assistance, a general plan of action, and a few spare hours per week. Here are details about a few of the most effective strategies.
Be a Student Loan Cosigner
One of the best things you can do for another person is to help to get financing for a college loan. By acting as a cosigner, you can do just that. Not only does this simple act give the applicant a higher probability of being approved, but it also boosts their prospects of snagging a lower interest rate than they’d otherwise get. For so many young adults who have no credit or a very short financial history, it’s nearly impossible to get an education loan, much less get one with favorable interest rates. When a student’s loan comes with competitive rates, they end up paying far less over the life of the obligation and end up saving thousands of dollars in the process. If you wish to do a good deed for a prospective college student you know, consider being a cosigner and setting them on the right course.
Start a Community Service Organization
Whatever your favorite cause is, consider creating a formal organization that is dedicated to the goal of raising money for it. Fortunately, you don’t need to be wealthy or have community influence to get underway. Check local regulations and state rules about forming a charity. Fill out the necessary paperwork and pay the modest registration fees. If your goal is to establish a formal 501(c)3 charitable organization that’s recognized by the IRS and allows donors to deduct contributions on their taxes, check out the IRS website and download the application form.
Many start community service organizations for all sorts of reasons. Some work to alleviate homelessness, hunger, or crime. Others work to assist adults who need basic job-related and literacy skills. Check out some of your community’s existing organizations to get an idea of what needs are already being addressed and where there are gaps. It’s those unaddressed needs where you can have the greatest impact and start making a huge difference in people’s lives.
Take an Informal Approach
Explore simple concepts that don’t require large amounts of funding. Some distribute free voter or tax guides, set up ride networks for elderly citizens who need a lift to doctor appointments or give free job search counseling to new immigrants and homeless adults loo