Charity: The What, Why and How?

2 minutes

What is Charity?

By definition when an individual or group of people or an organization help the needy voluntarily, it is called a charity. Charity is done mostly in the form of giving money but it can also involve giving food, clothes, medicines and other essential requirements. It is also a way of giving back to society. An individual can even devote their life to charity as in the case of Mother Teresa. 

Jack London puts it beautifully:

“A bone to the dog is not charity. Charity is the bone shared with the dog, when you are just as hungry as the dog.”

Why do charity?

Most of the religions of the world promote charity as it is a way to reduce differences between the financial status of the privileged and less privileged sections of society. The charity helps both the individual giving charity as well as the one receiving it. The individual tends to feel satisfied, happy and peaceful after giving charity. The joy of giving is just immense! Human beings have a nature of helping others and when they help others through charity, they indirectly help themselves. The receiver, on the other hand, feels relieved and satisfied that his needs were met.

How to be charitable?

There are many ways to be charitable depending on the cause that the individual wants to work for.

1-Non Governmental Organizations work for many causes. Humanitarian and disaster relief measures are often the priority for these organizations.

2-Charitable Hospitals that look after the sick.

3-Charitable Educational Institutions take care of the educational needs of the less privileged students and provide scholarships to students.

4-Environmental Charities who work to preserve the natural environment for the well-being of the living people as well as for the future generations to come.

5-Animal Welfare Charities- These can be further divided into

(a)-Wildlife Conservation Organizations which work for the welfare of wild animals

(b)-Pet Welfare Organization which work for the welfare of domesticated animals.

6-There are also charities that work for promoting public awareness about specific causes such as Mental Health and Cancer Awareness.

7-There are the charities which focus on research of diseases such as Cancer and AIDS which are not considered as curable in advanced stages and to improve the quality of life of patients who are suffering from these diseases.

An individual has many opportunities to be charitable and help the needy. Charity does not involve only giving money, an individual can also give his time and effort which is just as beneficial.

 I will leave you with this heartwarming video on charity…


Dr Sarah is a Masters in Counselling and Psychotherapy from Kuvempu University. She also holds Diploma in personal counselling skills. She has experience in dealing with addiction, relationship issues, stress, anxiety and depression. She believes that communication is an important skill that helps to solve many issues in life. She has an interest in cooking, likes to meet friends, is easy going and believes in living life in the present. Through YourDOST, she wants to help people convert their negative situations into positive ones.