Doing good does you good – so make some ­big-hearted resolutions for a brighter year.

From saving a stranger to walking a dog, these seven ­simple acts of kindness will make a real difference.

1. Give blood

By registering as a blood donor, you can save lives by helping someone in an emergency or with a long-term illness.

The NHS needs more than 6,000 blood donations a day to treat patients and it takes only a few minutes to give blood.

Currently, most donors are over 45. To ensure there is enough blood in the ­future, ­people aged 17 and over are urged to donate.

Find out more at

2. Organ donor register

Every day, three people who need an organ transplant die.

By filling in a donor card or telling your family you want your organs to be donated, you can help others.

Most organs come from people who have died but some, such as ­kidneys, can be ­transplanted by living donors. Visit

3. Sponsor a child

There are children in need all over the world and for £19.50 a month you can change their lives.

By sponsoring a child, they can access food, water, health care and education. See ­ In the UK, the Railway Children charity cares for kids on the streets.

Outreach workers find ­vulnerable youngsters who feel they have nowhere to go and no one to turn to. Support their work at

4. Visit the elderly

Loneliness is a huge issue for our ageing population. Out of the 3.6million older people in the UK, 1.9million say they often feel ignored or invisible and two fifths admit the television is their main source of company.

You can make a difference by ­visiting people in a nursing home or ­volunteering through Contact The Elderly, a charity that organises free monthly social events for people who feel isolated.

You can get involved by ­visiting

5. Raise money for charity

From giving up chocolate, to ­running marathons, there are many sponsored events taking place all over the country to raise money for good causes. If getting fit is one of the things you would like to do in 2019, take part in a Race For Life event and help raise money for people ­affected by cancer too.

People of all ages and fitness levels can join in at

6. Support the homeless

According to the charity Crisis, 12,300 people are sleeping on the streets.

Whether you volunteer at a soup kitchen or shelter, raise money or simply ask a homeless person if they need food or a warm drink, it can really help. Visit

7. Help animals in need

Most towns and cities have at least one animal shelter that needs volunteers to help walk dogs or care for cats.

You might not be able to have a pet but spending time with animals improves your mood, reduces stress and helps socialise them, boosting their chance of being rehomed.

You can find a local shelter near you by doing a quick search online or visit or

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