Sunday, February 8, 2009

Frugal Generosity

The Hunger Site
Do you want to continue with charitable giving while still saving money? If you are low on funds, there are plenty of other creative ways to be generous to those who are less fortunate. Here are some of the best resources that allow our family to give more while spending less cash:
  1. Click to Give -- Visit thehungersite.com and click the yellow button. The site's sponsors will deliver food to the poor every day you click the yellow button. Sign up for their free reminder email service, and they will send you a free "Seek Peace" bracelet! 
  2. Volunteer Your Time -- Visit volunteermatch.org to find local volunteer opportunities that match your schedule and skill set.
  3. Give Blood -- If you are eligible, consider donating blood. Visit givelife.org to find a local blood drive and set an appointment. It is important to remember that giving blood saves lives.
  4. Donate Your Hair -- If you have long hair and would like to try a shorter style, visit locksoflove.org for more information on how you can donate your hair to be made into wigs for cancer patients. I did this several times, the most recent was while I was pregnant with Clara. I figured if I was not color treating my hair, I might as well grow it out so someone else could have it. After the pregnancy, I treated myself to a new style (and color), and donated over 10 inches of hair!
  5. Try a Micro-Loan -- Kiva.org lets donors choose a specific entrepreneur from a developing country to help empower them out of poverty. Loans start at just $25 and once a loan is re-paid, you can re-lend it to someone else in need, donate funds to Kiva, or withdraw your funds. We always choose to re-lend it and make sure our donation helps the most people. Kiva also has gift certificates for Valentine's Day!
  6. Donate to Goodwill  -- With your upcoming Spring cleaning, be sure to set aside any clothing items, small appliances, household goods, or furniture to be donated to Goodwill. The sales of your donations help fund job training and other career services that help people become successful at work. Click here to find a Goodwill store near you.
Has your family made use of these programs, or do you plan to use any of these for the first time? Do you know of any others I forgot to add? I would love to hear from you! Leave a comment and share you ideas with us!

2 comments:

MaryAnne said...

We've done thehungersite.com - if you look at the top of the page there are tabs for a few other sites where you can click and donate to breast cancer, child health, literacy, rainforest, and animal rescue too. I'd been visiting the site for a while before someone pointed that out to me! freerice.com is a fun vocabularytesting-free food site also.

I used to donate blood, but I'm not eligible any more. I would love to donate hair, but mine never seems to grow very fast (or maybe I just get impatient and chop it off too soon?)

We donate to Goodwill all the time, and I want to start a Kiva loan...

Thanks for the great list!

tavia.of.barsoom said...

What an excellent list! You mentioned a few of my favorite options. I wanted to share another resource as well--I work for UniversalGiving, an online non-profit designed to connect individuals to the best performing projects to donate to or volunteer with, all over the world. We guarantee the quality of the charities appearing on our site, and we don't take any cut on donations. Donating a "small" amount is fine--because when you put everyone's efforts together, the smallest amounts can add to so much! Check us out at www.universalgiving.org if you're curious.

Best,
Cheryl Mahoney
cmahoney@universalgiving.org

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