Through commerce and marketing, businesses and corporations have many of the resources needed to assist their communities in growth and prosperity across the board. There are many options for doing so, such as donating to charities and non-profit organizations, but philanthropic work can go so much further than that. Spreading knowledge and supporting the community are only a couple of the many ways available for how businesses can be philanthropic in their community.
Donate to Philanthropic Organizations that Deliver Social Benefits
While an independent philanthropic business may not be able to reach the entire world from their headquarters, there are certainly avenues to do so! One such way is to donate to or partner with organizations that do their own philanthropic work, to increase your business’ reach and do more good. These partnerships can bring resources like food and water to regions that don’t have it, or enable smaller communities with the resources to build their own philanthropic businesses, paying the goodness forward. These donations are also tax-deductible in some cases, creating a market incentive for businesses to donate. Businesses can only gain by helping their community, and it will show a true dedication to the people they serve daily.
Set up Volunteer Opportunities and Events
As an independent business, being philanthropic also involves connecting with your community. A business can’t operate without the people that use it, and a community can strongly benefit from having the resources of a business behind them. Companies can set up or sponsor local volunteer opportunities and events to benefit the community, and mobilize groups of people to do good locally. Consider starting a company-wide day of service, bringing employees of the company to plant trees, clean up public spaces, or bringing food to food banks nearby. Businesses could also set up fundraising events or limited-run donation events to bring buzz and media to a particular cause. There are a variety of ways to support the already-existing volunteering systems in your area, while also connecting with the parts of your community that could really use your help.
Commit to Eco-Friendly Practices
Business philanthropy goes further than helping people in your community — it also means keeping your community safe and clean. Philanthropic businesses should begin by engaging in more sustainable and eco-friendly practices, such as sustainable packaging, green fuels, and limiting carbon footprints from shipping, data management, and much more. There are a large variety of ways for businesses to commit to being eco-friendly, and it is highly dependent on what the business is already doing to combat their carbon footprint. Businesses can consider altering their packaging material to biodegradable or organic packing, developing a sustainability strategy, or partnering with local green organizations to support the work already being done. While easily overlooked, eco-friendly practices are one of the simplest ways for how a business can be philanthropic in their region.
Offer Support to Community Heroes
Within your community, there are already people working to make it a better place. Philanthropic businesses should support these community heroes to thank them for the work they do every day. Firefighters, teachers, doctors, and EMTs will all appreciate a small token of thanks, in the form of discounts, free items, or special services to celebrate their hard work. These community heroes do the work day-in and day-out, and are truly making change in their community every day, setting up an incredible avenue to change the world for the better, and for businesses to be philanthropic themselves.
Spread Knowledge in Your Community
Ultimately, the best thing anyone can do to spread goodness and support is to educate their community as a whole. Spreading knowledge in the community is a great way to mobilize groups of people, as well as share opportunities to help those in need take advantage of what they can. Sharing locations of food banks and homeless shelters, distributing flyers to businesses on eco-friendly practices, and even just spending time at a local library to educate people on how they can give back themselves are all surefire ways to expand your business’ network, and show your commitment to improving your community. A group can only be as strong as the people supporting it, and having the support and resources of a philanthropic business can make all the difference.
Find Your Way to do Good
While these certainly aren’t all the ways to be a philanthropic business, anywhere is a good start! Every group of people is different, and the things that are important to a group of people varies from location to location. The best way to understand your community is to become a part of it, by going to local events, sharing knowledge, and ultimately sharing your opportunities, resources, and goodwill with all people that need them.
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