Today I happened upon the special wedding registry of Dana and Simon. Instead of registering for housewares and gifts as is the custom for weddings, this generous couple set up an online fundraising page for charity:water. To date they have raised more than US$42,000 to fund the construction of new wells and boreholes in communities that don’t have access to safe drinking water.
I can’t tell you anything about Dana and Simon – I don’t know who they are or where they’re from or why they chose to raise funds for drinking water instead of receiving wedding presents, but I can tell you how to follow their example.
These days it’s easy to set up an online fundraising page for your favourite charity. Your friends and family can donate securely online and the funds are automatically transferred to the charity. Just go to the website of your favourite charity and take a look around – I bet you’ll find something. Otherwise, try an online fundraising site like JustGiving (UK), FirstGiving (USA), or Everyday Hero (Australia) and choose from the list of available charities.
You don’t have to be getting married – there are dozens of ways to fundraise online. How about asking your friends to donate to your favourite charity instead of getting you a birthday present this year? Sandhya Badrinarayanan did just that and raised more than $2,500 for ChildFund by forfeiting presents for her 21st birthday. Or how about taking part in a sports event like the Oxfam Trailwalker and asking your friends to support your efforts? You’ll be surprised how easy it is and how good it feels to make an impact in this way.
It’s Dana and Simon’s special day tomorrow. Let’s hope they have a wonderful day celebrating with their loved ones and that they feel especially joyous knowing that their nuptials will be celebrated around the world in communities that will benefit from their generosity.