International Day of Charity
The 5th of September is International Charity Day. It is the anniversary of the death of Mother Theresa, a nun and missionary who spent much of her life helping fight poverty in Calcutta. She was responsible for founding and growing a congregation of followers called the Missionaries of Charity which numbered 4000 people at the time of her death. Many quotes have been attributed to Mother Theresa. I’ve peppered a few through this article to lift your day.
The International day of charity was officially declared on 5th September 2012 by the United Nations. Last year, UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon said, "Charity is one of the best investments we can make in our common future. On this day of International Charity, I call on people everywhere to be part of our 15-year partnership for humanity, and to help make the Sustainable Development Goals a reality for all. "
So what’s it got to do with health?
One of the key indicators of good health is happiness and it's been proven many times over that giving makes us happier. Here's a great article discussing how percentage increases of income donations correlate to better mental heath.
In addition, many people need a bit of extra encouragement to commit to a fitness routine and find that entering group charity events gives them the push to succeed. I think there’s a few reasons for this. Obviously, many people are wonderfully altruistic and love knowing that they’re part of the change they want to see. For others it’s perhaps that they need the fear of potentially public failure to force them into making the healthy choice and a charity event provides that incentive to stick to the plan. In many cases, people enjoy being part of a national or international event and charities are very good at providing the sporting infrastructure for these activities. Whatever the reason, charity and exercise make for a wonderful symbiosis.
October is Breast Cancer Awareness month, November is Men’s Heath Awareness month and I’ll be writing articles to highlight both these causes nearer the time. If you’re interested in combining your fitness goals with fundraising, why not use the International Day of Charity as a springboard and choose a cause close to your heart to inspire you? By improving someone else’s life you can quite literally transform your own.
Enjoy Abundant Health.