As a one car family sustained by a single income, it is all too easy to forget that there are always those less fortunate than us. Our limited funds prevent us from giving what we’d like right now, but, where there’s a will, there’s a way. We are still able to give generously, even while on a tight income. Here are easy some ways to be generous on a budget.
Whether it be donating your online survey points to a worthy cause through sites like swagbucks.com or recyclebank.com, or if you prefer to use goodsearch.com as your search engine of choice (a penny per search does add up!), there are countless options that enable you to give to your favorite charity. Many of them are easily implemented into your daily routine too!
This tip doesn’t just apply to giving away “experienced clothing” to places like Goodwill (although that’s a great option…and tax deductible too!). It is also applicable to—dare I say it?—your trash. If going green to save money is your thing, or you want to go above and beyond mere recycling, check out terracycle.com. From dental floss containers or plastic diaper bags, you may be surprised what can be rescued from the landfill and “upcycled.”
Sending in trash that is hard or impossible to recycle is almost always free—just join the site, sign up for the “brigade” of your choosing, print off the free shipping label, and send ‘er in. You never know—your trash may become that plastic park bench you see, or your neighbor’s back pack! The best part about this site is that, for every qualified item you send in, you earn two points, which can be redeemed for a payment to the charity or school of your choice. All. For. Free.
If you are under age 45 and healthy, this is another free and fabulous way to give. (People between 45 and 60 can still sign up, but have to pay a tax-deductible fee). If you are in good health, and meet just a few other requirements, you have the potential to save a life. Once you sign up at bethematch.org, you will be sent a buccal swab kit (fancy word for “cheek swab”). After that information is entered into their database, you are in there until age 61 or unless you ask to be removed. Although you may never be called upon to donate your blood marrow, the possibility is always there that you may be called upon to help save a life. Visit bethematch.org for more information.
No cheek swab needed, and the need is always there. Don’t let a needle phobia keep you from this quick and easy way to give to those in need. As an added bonus, more and more blood centers entice potential donors with free meals, gifts, or both. My husband and I have actually made a date night out of blood donation. It’s actually a lot of fun!
Hands down, this is the easiest way to give to a charity in need. Many people tithe their financial blessings. While a wonderful practice, tithing your time is just as valuable, especially in the time-starved society in which we live. Time is money, so whether you volunteer for one hour a month or volunteer several hours, consider your pet cause and take the initiative: volunteer. Volunteermatch.org is a great place to get started. Many of the options can be done virtually as well!
You don’t have to be rich to give generously. Remember: every little bit does make a difference. Give all you can!
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