Studying and broke but want to give back?

You might have used your last R10 for a campus fundraiser yesterday. Now your pockets are empty, but your heart is still feeling full.

ways to give back

Looking for other ways to give back? We’ve put together a handy list. 

Giving some of your free time to a worthwhile cause costs nothing, yet the payback is enormous. For one, there are health benefits. Research has shown that giving back can help counteract the effects of stress, anger and anxiety. Being helpful can deliver immense pleasure too. We’re not making this up. Medical professionals have measured hormones and brain activity when people are doing good and established that the more we give, the happier we feel. 

Whether you’re volunteering, tutoring or getting involved in a social responsibility initiative, you’re bound to develop problem-solving skills, become more adept at time management and learn how to plan and execute projects. Attributes which are all sure to come in handy when you nail down your first paid job, right? 

Here are 5 ways you can give back:


Planned donations

Your day-to-day budget may be too tight to help everyone you meet, but you can make a plan for philanthropy (that’s giving money to people who need it, without expecting anything in return). Consider setting up a small recurring payment to the organisation or cause you’re passionate about. If you don’t have enough money, you could also donate clothes or other things you don’t need anymore.



Using the power and reach of social media and personal networks, you can use crowdfunding platforms, such as Back a Buddy, to ask your friends and family members for donations towards a cause close to your heart. For instance, if you want to help your favourite petrol attendant buy school supplies for all 4 of his kids. Your time spent orchestrating the effort is a huge contribution in itself. 


Gifts that give back

This year, instead of buying your mom yet another overpriced celebrity-chef cookbook, make a donation on her behalf. Sponsor a tree that will be planted in reforestation projects across Southern Africa from Greenpop or adopt a penguin through SANCCOB. Major brownie points.


Ask your university or college tutoring department whether they could use your services at a reduced rate or free of charge. You don’t have to be a mathematical genius or know how to split an atom. Some students may benefit from your efficient use of the English language or the fact that you are well-versed in putting together a PowerPoint presentation. If you want to join a private tutoring company, consider Turtlejar Tutors who donate a portion of all of their tutoring earnings to students and children in need of education throughout South Africa. 



There are a number of programmes in your community that could benefit from your time and energy. Your local library, a school in a nearby underprivileged area, a home for the elderly or your local animal shelter. The Lions and Rotary clubs are service organisations that should be tapped into the needs of your neighbourhood, so give them a call first. Also check out the forgood Blog. They have been collecting know-how on volunteering for years and have access to some of the best causes in South Africa. 


Simplify your life

Move to Capitec’s Global One solution and earn interest on your transactional account and get 4 free savings plans that you can name after your goals, such as “giving back”. Or, alternatively, you can use the interest you’ll earn from your savings plans to donate towards a worthy cause. 

Was this article helpful?



You may also like...