You’ve been busy building a successful small business, but now you want to give back to your community? There are many ways to get your business involved in a charitable cause. Here are six tips for becoming a more charitable small business other than simply writing a cheque.
1. Partner with a suitable charity
There are so many non-profit organisations out there doing great work, so how can you decide on one to partner with? Involving your employees in the decision is an excellent starting point. Some of your people may already have personal connections with charities that you could build on. It’s also a good idea to look out for charities that share your business values.
2. Encourage your employees
Consider giving your employees some dedicated time off to pursue volunteer work. That could mean helping out at a local homeless shelter, getting involved with the Rural Fire Service, or doing a shift at a helpline. This will help you build a permanent not-for-profit aspect into your business structure while keeping your employees motivated.
3. Support social enterprises
Many social enterprises provide services to businesses while supporting disadvantaged sectors of the community. For example, YMCA ReBuild is a maintenance services provider that employs disadvantaged youth, and Enable Australia runs employability programs for people experiencing hardship. Partnering with a social enterprise is also an excellent way to bring more diversity to your workforce.
4. Sponsor a local sporting club
Local sporting clubs are often run on donations and in desperate need of funds. If you don’t have a personal connection with a sporting club, ask your employees. Chances are some of them are involved with their kids’ sporting teams and can put you in touch with a club president or treasurer to discuss sponsorship opportunities. Getting your logo on uniforms or signage can also improve your brand’s visibility in your local community.
5. Make your resources available
Talk to local charity organisations about what they need. You could make your conference rooms available for a charity to hold after-hours meetings, lend your audio-visual equipment to a fundraising event, or even donate old computer equipment. If you have any unused office space, you could consider offering it to a local charity, startup, or budding social entrepreneur.
6. Donate goods or services
Supporting charities isn’t all about signing cheques. If you’re in the retail business, you could donate surplus stock that charities can use to raise funds. As a service provider, you can offer local charities your expertise or auction it off to raise money.