I have been a member of KZNWIB since 2013, and it is my go-to place for building business relationships. But, an unexpected spin-off has been, that the monthly networking meetings have provided me with a platform for my altruistic motives.
KZNWIB has a chosen charity that they adopt for a period of time, and through this, we as members, have been introduced to phenomenal NGOs such as the Open Door Crisis Centre and iThemba Lethu. Ordinary Members can support these charities through their membership fees, raffle tickets and KZNWIB fundraising efforts. KZNWIB Committee members are blessed with a more direct role to ensure that all funds and efforts of our KZNWIB NPO, get directed to the efforts of our chosen charity.
Above and beyond this though, there are KZNWIB members who also represent NGO’s and use the KZNWIB platform to network, receive inspiration and support, and to raise their charity’s profiles. Amongst others, eDeaf, The Robin Hood Foundation, The Sunflower Fund, St Giles, TAFTA, Highway SPCA, and the Social Cause, come to mind.
What a special opportunity to engage with one’s community, to be able to use one’s business to assist others. Sometimes through very simple measures, like donating bed linen or towels that are no longer “five-star”, but perfectly usable, one can help a shelter for abused women, donate old blankets to a dog kennel, or use your left-over wool to knit beanies for orphaned and abandoned children.
Not only are these good ways to help one’s community but they are excellent ways to re-cycle or re-purpose goods that no longer fit into your business.
At Westville B&B, we recycle as much as we can in line with our Environmental Policy, but sometimes, instead of recycling, we donate. A simple example is our egg trays and toilet roll inners. We produce a lot of these across our three B&B properties. Yes, I can drop these into our Ronnie bags, and Durban Solid Waste can collect them weekly… OR… I can donate them to the Fulton School for the Deaf, or Horizon Trust for the Mentally Challenged, and they can use them for their craft programs. They are desperate for these raw materials!
These charities have fundraising events. Support them in their efforts with vouchers, raffle prizes, or donations. If you cannot afford to give money, then give your time or your skill. Help them (wo)man a Golf Day, or offer your design skills to do their flyers, or offer your conference room to host a Fundraising event. Not only does it show you care and that you support them, but it is publicity for your business.
Many small companies battle to find good content for their social media. What an amazing opportunity it is, to highlight your contribution to local worthy causes.
Outside of KZNWIB and those mentioned above, I personally support our local Catholic Church’s charities, The SA Guide Dog Association, The Highway Hospice, and our children’s local Government Schools.
As members of our communities, we have an obligation to contribute.
GUEST AUTHOR BIO
Emma has been in Hospitality since 2003, and before that was in Corporate Training & Development. She graduated with a BA in Languages and Human Resources, and a Postgraduate Diploma in Organisation & Management from the University on Cape Town. They have five children, and Emma’s hobbies include Karate, Knitting, and Oil Painting.