Today, September 5th is the International Day of Charity.  What exactly is it, and how can YOU get involved?

Today is the International Day of Charity. You may not have heard of it, but it’s certainly gaining a lot of ground and has significant worldwide backing.  In fact, it’s a unique initiative.  To inspire you, we’ve put together some information about this important day.  Why not get involved?

A little bit of History

International Day of Charity is an idea conceived by the Hungarian government in 2011.  The idea was to improve the visibility of special charity events or awareness campaigns and to encourage wider social responsibility and support for charities on an international scale.

It was declared as an “official” initiative by none other than the United Nations General Assembly in 2012.

The date, 5th September is highly significant.

It’s the day that Mother Teresa of Calcutta died in 1997, just a few days after the death of the Princess of Wales.  At the time, Mother Teresa’s death went a little under the radar, so the  International Day of Charity is a fitting commemoration to her memory.

Lest we forget, Mother Teresa was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1979 for her “work to overcome poverty and distress, which also constitute a threat to peace” – a worthy recipient, we’re sure you agree.

What is the International Day of Charity?

In summary, this is a special day.

And, as its name suggests, it’s celebrated worldwide.  The International Day of Charity has a primary objective:  It aims to enhance and increase a sense of charitable and humanitarian accountability in all of us.  How? Through putting charities centre stage for a day, providing a platform for fundraising and awareness-gathering events to take place, and increasing the public’s support for charitable causes.

In other words, to encourage us to be mindful of the world around us, of those less fortunate than we are, and to be conscious of our responsibilities to individuals who may need our help.

Why it’s Important – The Serious Stuff

To be adopted by the United Nations, an initiative needs to be significant and have a global outreach.

In the 2030 Agenda on Sustainable Development, adopted in 2013, the UN acknowledged that eradicating worldwide poverty is our greatest challenge – and this is still true.

The six areas highlighted in the Agenda focus on people, our planet, prosperity, peace and partnership, with a series of sustainable development goals aimed at transforming the lives of billions of people.

The Agenda also highlights the need for strengthened global solidarity.  Helping the most vulnerable requires the engagement of all of us.  Here at Carers’ Support, we can’t help but agree.  Together, we’re stronger.  Collectively, we can do anything.

Charities in our Community and Throughout the World

As a charity ourselves, we’re mindful of the generosity of others, not only from external funding efforts but also of your personal and private commitment to others.  If you’re a carer reading this blog, you’ll be only too aware of giving – giving your time, care and love to your friend, parent, partner or patients.  You do this every day, with (probably) not enough respite or care for yourself.

So, our support for the notions of volunteering and philanthropy could not be stronger. We validate your role in caring as robustly as we can, along with the sterling efforts of the people who raise money for our charity, and for the thousands of other worthy causes throughout the UK and internationally.

What you could do on The International Day of Charity?

The International Day of Charity is not about one specific cause.  It’s about all of us deciding what we could do for others, being aware, donating, fund-raising – anything in the name of charity.

You could:

  • Bake cakes and sell them

  • Sell your unworn clothes on eBay

  • Join a fun run

  • Volunteer your time for those in need

  • Sit in a bath full of baked beans (!)

  • Donate to your local homeless shelter

  • Give your time for free

  • Sign up for a sponsored walk

And…enjoy your day.  Giving is receiving, don’t you think?