Helping Others Quotes

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While we focus a lot on self-improvement here at KeepInspiring.me, an important part of living a happy and fulfilling life includes being part of a close-knit community where you can share, help, and support the people you care about.

It also includes being kind to strangers, and learning to replace envy and anger with understanding and empathy.

It’s easy to get so wrapped up in fixing your own life that you forget about helping others. And while it’s important to put yourself first sometimes, it’s even more important to help others whenever you can.

Being generous isn’t even always about altruism – becoming more generous and compassionate will have real tangible benefits in your own life, according to some of the bite-sized wisdom of the individuals below.

Here are some quotes about helping others to inspire you to give more in your own life.

Quotes About Helping Others

“Part of being a person is about helping others.” – Regis Murayi

Great opportunities to help others seldom come, but small ones surround us every day.

Sally Koch

Unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot, nothing is going to get better. It’s not.

Dr. Seuss

Community service gives me a valuable opportunity to walk into a different community that is less familiar to me but just as colorful and most importantly, in need.

Caroline Landry

He who serves the most, reaps the most.

Jim Rohn

Selfless giving is the art of living.

Frederic Lenz
“A community is like a ship, everyone ought to be prepared to take the helm.” – Henrik Ibsen

The meaning of life is to find your gift. The purpose of life is to give it away.

Pablo Picasso

Always have a willing hand to help someone, you might be the only one that does.

Roy T. Bennett

Life engenders life. Energy creates energy. It is by spending oneself that one becomes rich.

Sarah Bernhardt

The best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of others.

Mahatma Gandhi

Criticism, like rain, should be gentle enough to nourish a man’s growth without destroying his roots.

Frank A. Clark
“Service to others is the rent you pay for your room here on earth.” – Mohammad Ali

Help thy brother’s boat across and lo! Thine own has reached the shore.

Hindu Proverb

We make a living by what we get, we make a life by what we give.

Winston Churchill

Caring has the gift of making the ordinary special.

George R. Bach

Only a life lived for others is a life worthwhile.

Albert Einstein

We rise by lifting others.

Robert Ingersoll
“Earn your success based on service to others, not at the expense of others.” – H. Jackson Brown, Jr.

There is no use whatever trying to help people who do not help themselves. You cannot push anyone up a ladder unless he is willing to climb himself.

Andrew Carnegie

You can have everything you want in life if you just help enough people get what they want in life.

Zig Ziglar

Non nobis solum nati sumus. (Not for ourselves alone are we born.)

Marcus Tullius Cicero

Those who are happiest are those who do the most for others.

Booker T. Washington

There is no exercise better for the heart than reaching down and lifting people up.

John Holmes
“Doing nothing for others is the undoing of ourselves.” – Horace Mann

Quotes about Making a Difference

When we set out to help other people, our goal is to make a difference. Making a difference to a campaign, to a group of people, or to a single person, is what makes our efforts worthwhile.

The difference you make could be tangible. It might be that your contribution helps to fund a new building or a new kit for the local school football team.

But it could be something much less obvious, like making a casserole for a tired new mom so she doesn’t have to worry about cooking, or making someone smile when they are having a bad day.

Sometimes we’ll never know the difference we have made to another person and their life.

“It is literally true that you can succeed best and quickest by helping others to succeed.” – Napoleon Hill

The purpose of life is not to be happy. It is to be useful, to be honorable, to be compassionate, to have it make some difference that you have lived and lived well.

Ralph Waldo Emerson

It’s the action, not the fruit of the action, that’s important. You have to do the right thing. It may not be in your power, may not be in your time, that there’ll be any fruit. But that doesn’t mean you stop doing the right thing. You may never know what results come from your action. But if you do nothing, there will be no result.

Mahatma Gandhi

The purpose of life is to contribute in some way to making things better.

Robert F. Kennedy

In a gentle way, you can shake the world.

Mahatma Gandhi

Be who God meant you to be and you will set the world on fire.

St. Catherine of Siena
“Do more than belong: participate. Do more than care: help. Do more than believe: practice. Do more than be fair: be kind. Do more than forgive: forget. Do more than dream: work.” – William Arthur Ward

I am only one, but I am one. I cannot do everything, but I can do something. And I will not let what I cannot do interfere with what I can do.

Edward Everett Hale

No work is insignificant. All labor that uplifts humanity has dignity and importance and should be undertaken with painstaking excellence.

Martin Luther King Jr.

Kindness can transform someone’s dark moment with a blaze of light. You’ll never know how much your caring matters. Make a difference for another today.

Amy Leigh Mercree

Everyone thinks of changing the world, but no one thinks of changing himself.

Leo Tolstoy

I wondered why somebody didn’t do something. Then I realized, I am somebody.

Unknown
“Live simply that others might simply live.” – Elizabeth Ann Seton

Thousands of candles can be lighted from a single candle, and the life of the candle will not be shortened. Happiness never decreases by being shared.

Buddha

Happiness is not something ready made. It comes from your own actions.

Dalai Lama

One must be poor to know the luxury of giving.

George Eliot

When wealth is centralized, the people are dispersed. When wealth is distributed, the people are brought together.

Confucius

Sometimes give your services for nothing.

Hippocrates

When you become detached mentally from yourself and concentrate on helping other people with their difficulties, you will be able to cope with your own more effectively. Somehow, the act of self-giving is a personal power-releasing factor.

Norman Vincent Peale
“Life’s most urgent question is: What are you doing for others?” – Martin Luther King, Jr.

To pity distress is but human; to relieve it is Godlike.

Horace Mann

The test of a civilization is in the way that it cares for its helpless members.

Pearl S. Buck

If we always helped one another, no one would need luck.

Sophocles

Set your heart on doing good. Do it over and over again, and you will be filled with joy.

Buddha

An effort made for the happiness of others lifts us above ourselves.

Lydia M. Child

If you want happiness for an hour, take a nap. If you want happiness for a day, go fishing. If you want happiness for a year, inherit a fortune. If you want happiness for a lifetime, help somebody.

Chinese Proverb
“No act of kindness, no matter how small, is ever wasted.” – Aesop

Quotes about Charity

When it comes to charitable giving, you’ve probably seen the words “every little bit helps.” And that is true, because every donation – no matter how small – can make a difference to those in need.

Whether you choose to support a big cause like Breast Cancer Awareness Month, a mental health organization, or a smaller local charity that makes a big difference in your community, making a financial donation has a positive impact.

Research by the National Institutes of Health has also shown that donating money to charity makes us feel good.

Participants in a study who chose to donate a portion of the $100 they were provided with to charity showed that doing so makes us feel real joy. The brain scans of those who participated showed that three very different situations — receiving money, seeing money go to a good cause, or deciding to donate money — all activated similar pleasure-related centers deep in the brain.

“If you’re in the luckiest one per cent of humanity, you owe it to the rest of humanity to think about the other 99 per cent.” – Warren Buffett

Where charity keeps pace with gain, industry is blessed.

William Penn

The small charity that comes from the heart is better than the great charity that comes from the head.

Ivan Panin

Wealth is not new. Neither is charity. But the idea of using private wealth imaginatively, constructively, and systematically to attack the fundamental problems of mankind is new.

John Gardner

He has a right to criticize, who has a heart to help.

Abraham Lincoln

I will continue to distribute blankets, sleeping bags, warm clothing and food on a regular basis, in the hope that my modest efforts will give some comfort to those people we are able to help.

Mohamed Al-Fayed
“Time and money spent in helping men to do more for themselves is far better than mere giving.” – Henry Ford

Not he who has much is rich but he who gives much.

Erich Fromm

I resolved to stop accumulating and begin the infinitely more serious and difficult task of wise distribution.

Andrew Carnegie

Every charitable act is a stepping stone towards heaven.

Henry Ward Beecher

In charity there is no excess.

Francis Bacon

Love is not patronizing and charity isn’t about pity, it is about love. Charity and love are the same — with charity you give love, so don’t just give money but reach out your hand instead.

Mother Teresa, A Simple Path: Mother Teresa

Is the rich world aware of how four billion of the six billion live? If we were aware, we would want to help out, we’d want to get involved.

Bill Gates
“As the purse is emptied, the heart is filled.” – Charles Dickens

A rich man without charity is a rogue; and perhaps it would be no difficult matter to prove that he is also a fool.

Henry Fielding

Charity is no substitute for justice withheld.

Saint Augustine

Charity sees the need, not the cause.

Proverb

Did universal charity prevail, earth would be a heaven, and hell a fable.

Charles Caleb Colton

A benefactor is a representative of God.

Benjamin Whichcote
“Charity should begin at home, but should not stay there.” – Philip Brooks

Charity: a thing that begins at home, and usually stays there.

Elbert Hubbard

Charity brings to life those who are spiritually dead.

Thomas Aquinas

He who has no charity deserves no mercy.

English Proverb

Charity is injurious unless it helps the recipient to become independent of it.

John D. Rockefeller

The first question which the priest and the Levite asked was: ‘If I stop to help this man, what will happen to me?’ But…the good Samaritan reversed the question: ‘If I do not stop to help this man, what will happen to him?’

Martin Luther King Jr.
“God does watch over us and does notice us, but it is usually through someone else that he meets our needs.” – Spencer W. Kimball

Want to keep Christ in Christmas? Feed the hungry, clothe the naked, forgive the guilty, welcome the unwanted, care for the ill, love your enemies, and do unto others as you would have done unto you.

Steve Maraboli

That charity which longs to publish itself ceases to be charity.

Eliza Cook

Quotes about Giving

Giving to others isn’t just about money, it’s also about putting in time and effort.

Getting involved in a local project can help you feel more connected to your community; while those who volunteer also benefit from lower levels of stress, lower blood pressure, and increased physical activity.

A recent study also suggested that older adults who volunteer their time have improved cognitive function, increased walking speed, increased ability to climb stairs, and decreased rates of television watching than people who do not volunteer.

These helping others quotes show that giving makes as much of a difference to the giver, as it does to the receiver.

“The charitable give out the door and God puts it back through the window.” – Proverb

The difference between a helping hand and an outstretched palm is a twist of the wrist.

Laurence Leamer

When you learn, teach. When you get, give.

Maya Angelou

There are those who give with joy, and that joy is their reward.

Khalil Gibran

Giving is the master key to success, in all applications of human life.

Bryant McGill

Only by giving are you able to receive more than you already have.

Jim Rohn
“Giving opens the way for receiving.” – Florence Scovel Shinn

Giving is not just about making a donation. It is about making a difference.

Kathy Calvin

At the end it’s not about what you have or even what you’ve accomplished. It’s about who you’ve lifted up, who you’ve made better. It’s about what you’ve given back.

Denzel Washington

The degree of loving is measured by the degree of giving.

Edwin Louis Cole

To give your best is to receive the best.

Raymond Holliwell

If you have much, give of your wealth; if you have little, give of your heart.

Proverb
“Remember that the happiest people are not those getting more, but those giving more.” – Robin Sharma

When you open your heart to giving, angels fly to your door.

Unknown

While earning your daily bread, be sure you share a slice with those less fortunate.

Jackson Brown Jr.

So long as we love we serve; so long as we are loved by others, I would almost say that we are indispensable; and no man is useless while he has a friend.

Robert Louis Stevenson

Bounty always receives part of its value from the manner in which it is bestowed.

Samuel Johnson

The good we secure for ourselves is precarious and uncertain until it is secured for all of us and incorporated into our common life.

Jane Addams
“One must know not just how to accept a gift, but with what grace to share it.” – Maya Angelou

There is a natural law, a Divine law, that obliges you and me to relieve the suffering, the distressed and the destitute.

Conrad Hilton

I have found that among its other benefits, giving liberates the soul of the giver.

Maya Angelou

At the end of life we will not be judged by how many diplomas we have received, how much money we have made, how many great things we have done. We will be judged by “I was hungry, and you gave me something to eat, I was naked and you clothed me. I was homeless, and you took me in.

Mother Theresa

No one is useless in this world who lightens the burdens of another.

Charles Dickens

To ease another’s heartache is to forget one’s own.

Abraham Lincoln
“No one has ever become poor by giving.” – Anne Frank

Give, but give until it hurts.

Mother Teresa

When you stop giving and offering something to the rest of the world, it’s time to turn out the lights.

George Burns

To give requires good sense.

Ovid

He who waits to do a great deal of good at once, will never do anything.

Samuel Johnson

Getters don’t get — givers get.

Eugene Benge

It is more agreeable to have the power to give than to receive.

Winston Churchill
“A bit of fragrance always clings to the hand that gives you roses.” – Proverb

“Since you get more joy out of giving joy to others, you should put a good deal of thought into the happiness that you are able to give.’

Eleanor Roosevelt

We only have what we give.

Isabel Allende

To do more for the world than the world does for you, that is success.

Henry Ford

Do not do to others what angers you if done to you by others.

Socrates

I slept and dreamt that life was joy. I awoke and saw that life was service. I acted and behold, service was joy.

Rabindranath Tagore
“If there be any truer measure of a man than by what he does, it must be by what he gives.” – Robert South

If you knew what I know about the power of giving, you would not let a single meal pass without sharing it in some way.

Buddha

What I spent, I had; what I saved, I lost; what I gave, I have.

German Proverb

How Can You Help Others

You might be thinking, it’s great to know that giving to charity and volunteering my time each have so many benefits, but what can I do?

Well, it’s never been easier to find and support a cause. Here are just some of the things you can do:

  • Sign up for an organized race and commit to raising money from sponsors.
  • Volunteer for a local community project, like creating a garden or kids play park.
  • If you have kids, get involved with their hobbies and interests. Does their sports team or orchestra desperately need new kit or equipment? Arrange a fundraising event and help make it happen.
  • Get involved with your local Meals On Wheels initiative, whether by making a financial donation or connecting with seniors in your local area.
  • Buy a few extra groceries and drop them at your local Food Bank for people in need.
  • Donate Christmas gifts or gift cards to a children’s shelter – you could be the difference between a child having a gift on their birthday or not.
  • Donate to emergency relief efforts through an organization like the Red Cross or your church.
  • Grab a hot cup of coffee and a sandwich for a local homeless person.

More Quotes about Helping Others

“Act as if what you do makes a difference. It does.” – William James

Everyone can be great, because everyone can serve.

Martin Luther King Jr.

Find a need and fill it.

Ruth Stafford Peale

It’s good to be blessed. It’s better to be a blessing.

Jerry Smith

The best way to not feel hopeless is to get up and do something. Don’t wait for good things to happen to you. If you go out and make some good things happen, you will fill the world with hope, you will fill yourself with hope.

Barack Obama

I don’t want to live in the kind of world where we don’t look out for each other. Not just the people that are close to us, but anybody who needs a helping hand. I cant change the way anybody else thinks, or what they choose to do, but I can do my bit.

Charles de Lint
“If you light a lamp for somebody, it will also brighten your path.” – Buddha

Our prime purpose in this life is to help others and if you can’t help them, at least don’t hurt them.

Dalai Lama

Take time daily to reflect on how much you have. It may not be all that you want but remember someone somewhere is dreaming to have what you have.

Germany Kent

You have not lived today until you have done something for someone who can never repay you.

John Bunyan

A kind gesture can reach a wound that only compassion can heal.

Steve Maraboli

There is nothing more beautiful than someone who goes out of their way to make life beautiful for others.

Mandy Hale

If you’re not making someone else’s life better, then you’re wasting your time. Your life will become better by making other lives better.

Will Smith
“I cannot do all the good that the world needs. But the world needs all the good that I can do.” – Jana Stanfield

This country will not be a good place for any of us to live in unless we make it a good place for all of us to live in.

Theodore Roosevelt

Never look down on anybody unless you’re helping him up.

Rev. Jesse Jackson

When you do nothing, you feel overwhelmed and powerless. But when you get involved, you feel the sense of hope and accomplishment that comes from knowing you are working to make things better.

Pauline R. Kezer

We are not put on this earth for ourselves, but are placed here for each other. If you are there always for others, then in time of need, someone will be there for you.

Jeff Warner
“We are each other’s harvest; we are each other’s business; we are each other’s magnitude and bond.” – Gwendolyn Brooks

I hope these quotes about helping others inspire you to get out there and do so! Whether you make a charitable donation, volunteer your time, or offer a kind gesture that makes someone’s day, you’re making the world a better place to live.

*This post was originally published in March 2013 and updated August 24, 2020.

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Quincy Seale

Quincy is KIM's lead editor and content writer, and has invested in online properties since 2009. Quincy holds an MBA from the University of Dundee and an MSc from the University of Edinburgh, and lives in San Antonio with his wife Natalie and his dog Oban. When not working on KIM, he enjoys traveling, poker, and anything related to crypto.