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Citizenship

5 Small Ways You Can Change The World Today

Can one person change the world? While this is a complicated question, the short answer is yes. There are many small contributions a single person can make in the course of a day that will better the global community. Here are just a few ideas!

Tab for a Cause

If you’re reading this, it’s assumed that you’re on the internet, and that you spend time navigating the web. Maybe you even open tabs! Tab for a Cause is a lightweight browser app that keeps track of the tabs you open — and the best part is that each tab raises money for charities and NGOs. You can choose which cause you want your funds to be donated to, such as Human Rights Watch, or Water.org. This app is an easy way to help others every day, “click by click.”

Conserve Energy and Water

Conserving energy is so simple that all it takes is a flip of a switch. Turning off lights whenever you’re not using them is a foolproof way to lower both your electric bill and your carbon footprint. Conserving water is just as easy — turn off the tap while you brush your teeth, and shorten your showers to what is only necessary.

Read more: Not Everyone in the United States Has Running Water

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Bring a Reusable Water Bottle

While we’re on the topic of water, it’s time to do away with plastic water bottles. Carrying around a reusable water bottle not only will remind you to hydrate more often, which is great for your body, but it will also help you not to throw away unnecessary amounts of plastic.

Charity Miles

With every mile you move — be it running, walking, rollerblading, or whatever human-powered movement you prefer — this app will donate money to charity. Just open it while you’re moving, so it can track the distance, and you’ll be on your way toward helping others during your normal routine! And if exercise isn’t a part of your day, maybe this app will help inspire you to get out there and get moving.

Put Your Money Where Your Beliefs Are

Thoughtful spending isn’t just about budgeting, although that’s useful. When you spend money, you’re essentially voting for that company and whatever it is planning to invest your money in. Depending on what you prioritize, this might mean that you choose not to buy from companies that lobby against LGBT rights, or from large companies that have monopolies on the food industry. You might choose to focus on buying locally grown produce, to reduce your carbon footprint, or on buying fair trade. Whatever you decide, it is important to know that your money matters.

farm to garbage to table-why world leaders ate food waste.jpgImage: Flickr: Kelly Teague

Reduce Food Waste

Nearly 1.3 billion tons of food is wasted globally every year. You can make a difference just by being more careful about how you think about food. Try to plan your your meals so you don’t buy too much at the store; take home leftovers from the restaurant and put them to use; and share food with friends and neighbors if you have too much. Find more tips for reducing food waste here (in English).

Be a Social Media Activist

Standing up for the causes you support online actually makes a big difference in the world. Signing petitions and tweeting world leaders can lead to real change. Just ask the 656 million people who’ve been impacted by financial and policy commitments and announcements that Global Citizens advocated for. Since 2012, 6 million actions from Global Citizens have led world leaders to enact policy changes and commit significant resources to issues of girls and women’s equality, education, health, water and sanitation, environment, finance and innovation, and food and hunger. Platforms like Change.org and DoSomething.org also offer a way for your voice to be heard.


This is just a small selection of the many opportunities a single person has to change the world on a daily basis. Never underestimate your own potential to do good.