Almost a year ago, I started working at 3D Hubs. Since I like domino-effects in life-changing events I decided that besides finally entering start up life, I was going to pursue two other goals: getting fit, as one should in the startup world; and studying computer science more.
Full of confidence, I signed up for a year long gym membership and an at-home bachelor course for computer science. I got to work and continued studying and working out for… two weeks, maybe? Then, of course, I quit. The contracts though, were quite strict: I was stuck to paying for a full year.
A few weeks ago I realised that I will soon be done paying off my self-imposed fine, and I’ve been considering what I can do with this money. I could of course buy more things with it, but that doesn’t seem quite like the wise, adulty thing to do. And then the Mozilla rebranding happened, and suddenly everyone was talking about Mozilla (and of course Firefox).
However you may feel about Firefox, it should be impossible to deny that Mozilla is doing good work. As a (somewhat) large player in the browser market they have a very effective vote in web standards, and they’re always pushing for an open web. And now they’re finally putting more effort into improving Firefox as well! I’m betting that Mozilla has a very good influence on the internet.
Setting up monthly donations to Mozilla was a two minute task, and it doesn’t take away from my monthly purchasing power. Very quickly after followed Wikimedia—I was browsing Wikipedia for information on Mozilla. And now I think I might be getting addicted to charity.
After Mozilla and Wikimedia followed Vluchtelingenwerk, a Dutch charity supporting refugees. With conservative voices seemingly getting louder and louder—especially now with Trump in office—helping organisations that support refugees, minorities, and freedom (as in speech), seems increasingy important.
Giving small amounts of money each month to charitable organisations is a really easy and incredibly effective way to do some good. So far, I’m donating about €20 each month. Don’t be fooled by small amounts: every little bit always helps, and you can always raise your gifts later.
To reallocate the money I was throwing away before, I want to continue setting up periodical donations over the next few weeks. You can keep up with my list of charities on my website.
If that list looks like bragging, it’s because I am. People need to be reminded that charitable giving is normal. I am going to continue bragging, very publicly, and I encourage you to do the same: spend your money on things you believe in, and tell the world.