By: Brad Wayland;

3 Ways to Better Understand the Mission of Your Health Charity

Whether you’re trying to bring medicine to the underprivileged or help cure an illness, running a health charity can be incredibly rewarding. But it’s also a lot of work. If you want to excel, you need to do more than host a few fundraising drives. You must understand your cause. Here’s how.

Your heart is in the right place, and that’s incredible. After all, most people don’t work with a charity out of selfishness. However, where healthcare is concerned, simply having your heart in the right place isn’t necessarily enough.

You also need to understand your cause. You need to know what it is to suffer from a chronic illness, or why a particular community doesn’t have access to affordable care. You need to seek knowledge, and then use that knowledge for more effective aid. 

Here are three ways to do just that.

Talk To The People You’re Trying To Help

Most people who work with a health charity probably have at least some personal experience with its cause. Maybe they have a close friend or loved one who’s suffering from a health condition. Maybe they lost a family member to chronic illness, or know someone who was denied access to healthcare. 

Listen to them, but don’t forget to look past your volunteers. Even if some of the basic challenges are the same, everyone’s experience of health, wellness, and illness is a little different. Join support groups dedicated to the illness you’re trying to cure. Reach out to the people your cause supports. Reach out and discover what they went through to see the mission of your fundraising effort through a personal lens.

Look Over The Research

Whatever your cause, there’s a wealth of research online devoted to it. Use credible websites and publications to get a good handle on the bigger picture. In addition to giving you a better, clearer concept of your cause, statistics, figures, and research can be a powerful marketing tool when it comes time to bring in more donations.

If you seek to cure an illness, learn what it does to a victim’s body. Learn about different treatments. Learn about how it develops, where it came from, and how it’s changed over the years. 

If you want to help a particular community or group, learn its history and culture. Learn who they are beyond numbers on a page. 

Never Stop Learning

Last but certainly not least, research and understanding should be an ongoing thing. You should always seek new opportunities to learn more about your cause — to connect with people who might give you a new perspective on what you’re trying to do. That could include other charities working in the same field as you, or blog posts written by victims of an illness. 

The most important thing is that you keep an open mind. A chance to learn could surface anywhere and at any time. Pay attention and you might be surprised at what presents itself.   

Closing Thoughts

You aren’t running a healthcare charity for personal gain. You’re doing it out of the goodness of your heart. Just make sure you also take the time to educate yourself – because the more you know about your cause, the better equipped you’ll be to fulfill it. 

Brad Wayland

Brad Wayland is the Chief Strategy Officer at BlueCotton, a site with high-quality, easy-to-design custom t-shirts.