Your phone gives the equivalent gadgetry of James Bond, Batman and the first Lunar rockets combined, and as they say with great power comes great responsibility. Now that you have this resource at your fingertips the choice is: Do you use it for good, or evil?
On the slim off-chance you didn’t choose “evil”, here are several apps you can install on your phone to allow you to do a world of good with a tap of a touch screen.
We’d all like to give money to charity, but it’s so rare you actually have the spare cash lying around to do so. The Instead app is a neat little way of finding space in your budget for those tiny micro donations that all add up to make a huge difference.
It takes minor but luxurious expenses such as eating out or going to the cinema, suggests cheaper alternatives and offers you a link to somewhere you can make a charity donation with the money saved.
It’s either a wonderful way to encourage charitable giving or great way to suck all the joy out of the few luxuries you can actually afford to allow yourself, depending on your perspective.
If you like running, cycling or even walking long distances this app allows you to turn every morning run or long walk into a sponsored charity effort. Before you set out, simply link this app up to either your facebook or twitter accounts and pick one of the nine available charities to donate to.
As you run, walk or cycle the corporate sponsors of the app will make a donation depending on how far you travel, then notify your social media feeds accordingly.
It’s a great, free app that works to raise awareness as well as cash, without costing you anything more than the effort it takes to go for a run in the first place.
Calista: Volunteer Locally
This app is a great way to find out about volunteer schemes happening in your area. The app contects you with local nonprofits, suggesting ways you can help about by volunteering in your community. As well as suggesting volunteering efforts you could take part in, the app allows you to then rate your experience and invite friends through Facebook to take part as well. It can also track your hours, which is great if you’ve got a school project or similar that requires you to put in some community time.
The app is currently offering over 250,000 volunteering opportunities. So start checking them out now!
mGive describes itself as turning your iPhone or iPod Touch into a “social empowerment tool”, which is the sort of thing someone who can only speak through PowerPoint presentations would say, but is mainly a way of saying it lets you do good things for people. It provides you with lists of nonprofits that could use your support either through volunteering, raising money or spreading awareness. There are all sorts of charity jobs you can do in your local community, and this is a great way of finding them.
Sam Wright is a freelance writer who covers third sector work and social media marketing.