Source: (BloombergQuint) 

11 Last–Minute Things You Can Do To Take Part In DaanUtsav

If you want to take part in the Daan Utsav - India’s largest festival of giving - but don’t know where to start, here is your go-to guide. The festival lasts for a week between Oct.2 and Oct.8. #GivingTuesdayIndia is celebrated on the Tuesday of the #DaanUtsav week.

Every year, individuals use this week to give – be it giving back to the environment (planting trees), helping local organisations (donating goods, money and time), or sparing their time for communities (organising collection drives).

If you want to take part in this festival, you can do it through websites, apps, and contests, all of which are designed to make the process of giving easier. Some of those options are listed below.

1. Browse this gift wishlist made by nonprofits

DonateKart allows nonprofits to create a wishlist of supplies they need – be it books, cleaning supplies, rice, or clothes – so that individuals who want to provide goods instead of cash have an easier way to do so. The process is simple. You pick an organisation, select what you’d like to purchase for them and make the payment. The team at DonateKart then gets the supplies and delivers on your behalf.

2. Find, chat, meet up with a nonprofit near you

Ever wondered whether there were any nonprofits in your vicinity where you could volunteer time or donate money and goods?

The IamHere app (available on android and ios) now has Guidestar – India’s directory of more than 8,700 nonprofits.  Download the app to locate nonprofits near you, learn about them, and talk to these organisations. It even allows you browse for relevant events.

3. Use your phone, scan a QR code, give instantly

Leading up to Daan Utsav over 15,000 retail establishments (beauty salons, chemists, local kirana stores) will have tent cards with a QR code you can scan to make an instant donation. This is in addition to 500 restaurants in Mumbai and the Mumbai Metro that will also have posters with the QR code. You can give whatever you feel comfortable with – be it Rs 10 or Rs 1,000.

4. Shop more! (Get free donations made whenever you shop online – at no extra cost or effort)

Sumara – a Google Chrome extension – is running a “donate while you shop” campaign. It’s simple; you download the extension, and every time you buy something online (on Amazon, Myntra, Flipkar, Jabong etc), they will make a donation on your behalf to a nonprofit of your choice. The best part? They come back to you with the details of the impact created because of these donations.

Image courtesy: Aseema Charitable Trust
Image courtesy: Aseema Charitable Trust

5. Cook, buy, or deliver food for a few people – using a food sharing app

The Seva Kitchen app allows you to donate food or find food for people in need. Once you download the app, you can sign up as a donor, as a receiver, or as both. The app will be then customised accordingly.  So, if you want to cook a meal for a few people, or buy them one, download this app and find out who could benefit from it.

6. Take on the hafta challenge

Have you heard of the #HaftaChallenge? Sign up on their website and get a unique challenge (or act of kindness that you have to carry out) delivered to you, by email, every day for one week (2-8 October)

7. Join one of the largest networks of blood donors

Indian Blood Donors.com is a community of over 11,000 blood donors spread across the country. It’s simple, effective, and free. And it can match you with a donor near you within minutes. Pledge to become a blood donor to join and expand their network, and potentially save a life.

8. Spend an extra Rs.10 on Snapdeal

Snapdeal is sending stationery kits to nonprofits that work with child education across India.  Each kit costs Rs. 10 only, and you can buy these as an add-on when you’re shopping. The Snapdeal team will deliver it to the nonprofit themselves.

9. Take part in the #MyGivingStory challenge

#MyGivingStoryIndia is a contest where participants write in with their personal stories of giving and nominate a nonprofit of their choice. Once published on the website, people can vote for their favourite stories. The ones with the most votes stand a chance to have their nominated nonprofit receive a donation.

10. Check out this repository of 500+ vetted nonprofits you can give to

The #GivingTuesday India website has a repository of 500+ vetted nonprofits you can browse through by location, cause, beneficiary group, and make your donation online. There are also a range of options that can supercharge your donation through matching grants and prizes for nonprofits.

11. Spread the word!

Tell your colleagues, friends, and family about #GivingTuesday and Daan Utsav. Help spread the word about organisations you support or initiatives you find interesting.

If you want to see how some organisations celebrated Giving Tuesday last year, watch this video.

The artwork above is courtesy of the nonprofit Aseema. For more information, please click here.

Pushpa Aman Singh is the founder & CEO of GuideStar India. Pushpa is a Member of Advisory Council of GuideStar US, a Global Leader for #GivingTuesday. Pushpa is an MBA Gold Medalist and a Senior Global Fellow of the Synergos Institute, New York.

The views expressed here are those of the author’s and do not necessarily represent the views of BloombergQuint or its editorial team.