How often we wonder about how we can make our world a better place? And if not for us;maybe our children and the generations that are to follow. We get hassled over not being able to make much of a difference. Well, as Aesop said, that even the smallest act of kindness is never wasted. How true……

To do the good and noble is an inherent desire and a permanent resident of our to-do-wish list across the diaspora. And that could hold true to corporate entities or the nation itself.

But how do we do it? Does it have to compromise on our life and time? Do we sacrifice family and friends for the greater good? Not really…

Our country is being aided by the World Bank to scale up solar energy, from installing solar panels on rooftops to setting up solar parks. India pledged that it would derive at least 40% of its energy needs from renewable sources by 2030. India added a record 5,400 megawatts of wind power in 2016-17 accounting for over 55% of its renewable energy production.

India like Germany wants cars post 2030 to be run on renewable energy. Norway and UK want to ban all petrol and diesel cars by 2025 and 2040 respectively. So the auto industry globally has a reason to get cracking on producing electric vehicles.

And while our country works on the environment, carbon credits and greenhouse gas challenges; many individuals have adopted some solar solutions for their energy needs or buying an electric car can be used as a second car option. Small steps that could collectively make a big difference at a national level.

Bill Gates ruffled some feathers when he belittled efforts to bring the internet to the developing world.He asked which is more important - connectivity or a malaria vaccine? Gates realized how ridiculous that idea was when he saw living conditions in Africa firsthand in 1997. Today, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation works with thousands of partners in Africa, India, Europe, South America and USA. Guided by Bill and Melinda’s belief that all lives have equal value and every person deserves the opportunity to lead a healthy and productive life.

Following a change in Indian company law in April 2014, businesses with annual revenues of more than 10bn rupees must give away 2% of their net profit to charity. Areas they can invest this money in include education, poverty, etc. A plethora of corporate entities also operate initiatives for societal uplift. GE and many others allow employees to take time off during work hours for volunteering towards social causes.

Now, with so much crap going on in the world, can we make things better on our own.Would we have the finance or wherewithal to do so?Quite a disheartening matter of fact!! But every individual can help in some way or the other to make a difference.

Buying khadi from genuine sources and organizations. Switching off lights and fans when not in use. Shutting taps while shaving. Using bucket baths. Following PCRA guidelines when driving cars and using kitchen stoves. The choices are humongous.

Teaching your domestic help’s child. Funding a familiar needy student to crack an entrance exam. Growing more trees. Forming car pools. Using jute bags. The list goes on.

Donating to a genuine charity. Visiting an old age home or an orphanage to share a smile or snack. And not by turning your back when you see injustice around you.

There could be umpteen ways that you could make a difference to the world around you. And in case your spouse runs a more than successful enterprise, you could make volunteering and doing good deeds a full time occupation.

To quote Neil Armstrong, it may be a small step for you but a giant leap for mankind.

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