Did you know that when you make a donation to charity, your brain acts in a similar way to when you are having sex or eating chocolate?...It’s true! According to scientific research activity in the brain shows a link between giving money to charity and experiencing pleasure.
Further studies have also discovered that people who spend more of their income on gifts to others and donations to charity are happier than those who spend more on themselves.
However, most of us just know instinctively that “giving is better than receiving,” and are already being generous in giving our money away to those in need. With this in mind, we have compiled some tips about how to make the most out of your giving:
Gift Aid it: If you pay tax then you can make your donations go even further through the government’s tax relief scheme.Gift aid allows charities to claim an extra 25p for every £1 you give and it won’t cost you any extra. For example a £100 donation will be worth £125, so it’s definitely worth completing a gift aid declaration when you give.
Little and often: Giving a few pounds a month by Direct Debit is simple and can be less disruptive to your budget. Also for charities, having a steady stream of income is vital as it allows them to plan for the future.
Reduce your inheritance tax bill: Legacies are a fantastic way to ensure your money does something worthwhile after you’ve gone, instead of just going to the taxman! Giving to charity can actually reduce an inheritance tax bill that could otherwise claim a massive 40 per cent your estate above the threshold, see http://www.gov.uk/inheritance-tax for more info.
Valuable volunteering: Time can be just as precious as money, so if you don’t have a lot of money, you could always consider volunteering at a charity near you. It’s also a great way to meet new people, learn new skills and can enhance your CV!
Maximise your event: Achieving a personal challenge is always rewarding, and even better when you can generate some cash for a good cause. If you are doing an event, why not ask local businesses to sponsor you? Websites like JustGiving.com are really easy ways to collect sponsorship - post them on social media websites for greater publicity.
Find out more about how you can change lives through supporting the work of Christians Against Poverty.