Which charity should you donate to when you’re feeling generous and want give away some of your hard earned cash?
It depends entirely on what you care about.
Before donating anything, first take a step back and figure out what issue you care about more than anything else. What problems in society make you feel sad, disappointed, frustrated or angry? What news articles capture your attention? Who do you think needs protection or support?
There are so many benefits of figuring out what you really care about before picking a charity to donate to. By focusing on one particular cause on an ongoing basis you can gain experience with the success and failure of particular interventions. You will have the opportunity to build meaningful long-term relationships with charities. You will see change over time and the difference you helped to achieve.
Don’t be disheartened if no particular issue stands out, instead become an effective altruist. Effective altruists ask, “Of all the possible ways to make a difference, how can I make the greatest difference?” Their donations are targeted towards saving lives and preventing unnecessary suffering using evidence-driven interventions (effectivealtruism.org).
To be a smart and fulfilled donor, the first step is always to carefully target a cause that you can commit to over the long term. Only after figuring that out should you try to decide which charity to donate to.