As the pandemic now continues into the second year of unsettled working conditions and social distancing, we should take a long, hard look at the effect this has had on the charitable sector of our community.
A charity is created to fill a gap in the support of specific groups or the needs of a particular area. Some charities are very specific, whilst others are more wide-reaching. They encompass all areas of our community: children, adults, families, young people, environment, animals. Everyone has a preference and will choose a charity that they feel a closer connection to – although some people will contribute across the board. At The International School of Paphos, we feel that supporting charities is a central pillar of our community work. Usually, a wide range of charities benefit, across the spectrum, from our input but on occasion we have chosen a larger project to focus on.
This year all charities are in need as the economy is suffering, events can not take place and the normal fundraising activities and collections have been halted. Additionally, another factor to consider is that people have a more limited amount of money so they now have to be more selective as to the amount they can donate, and to which organisation they donate. As more people are disadvantaged by the effects of the economic downturn, more people are in need of help. As the rest of the community see this, their priority also changes, thus offering their assistance to those they see suffering more, therefore certain charities are negatively affected more than others.
Recently at The International School of Paphos, we held some collections. The first was for Stray Haven and Tala Monastery Cats: both animal sanctuaries. These were chosen as prior to the pandemic, these charities had been receiving vast donations of food from local restaurants which subsequently stopped. So, they experienced some of their sources being cut, irrelevant of other donations being reduced. Following this we asked students to de-clutter their homes. By doing this and finding unwanted items, they brought these into school, providing a substantial supply for the Samaritans charity shop. This didn’t cost our students, yet helped the community who need things at a low cost in these difficult times whilst also raising essential funds for charity. We also asked for monetary donations, in our project A Random Act of Kindness, where students performed small acts of kindness towards one another, their teachers and families. This small monetary donation that was requested, added together, became a significant amount which was donated to a local company who had stopped working. This local restaurant could not work due to restrictions so utilised the skills of their employees to help others.
Despite the students being online, our Head Student has worked conscientiously to find activities to motivate our students. These events that she has organised can be considered an act of charity as she dedicates her efforts towards helping those around her. These ideas, along with others from the school’s Philanthropy Club, have been implemented in an attempt to provide our students with a feeling of some normality in these difficult times.
The environment has not been forgotten ─ as group clean-ups are not possible, due to social distancing, we have worked together with #stoppollutioncy to challenge our students to #cleanyourstreet. These are small acts which, combined, make a significant difference.
All of our ISOP contributions are different ways of giving to those around you and show that no matter what your circumstances, you can help and YOU CAN MAKE A DIFFERENCE. So, don’t delay ─ help … a small act will make an impact.
For more information please contact:
Chryso Iasonos – Marketing Manager
Tel: +357 26 821 700 | Fax: +357 26 942 541
Address: 100 Aristotelous Savva Ave, Anavargos, P.O. Box 62018, 8060 Paphos