Feb 13, 2014

How to give back without breaking the bank: donations and tithing

When looking for ways to give back, there are many creative ways to donate without breaking the bank.

Donate your Money.. responsibly 

Donate to reputable organizations to make sure every penny you give counts, or with causes where your donation will be matched dollar for dollar. Some organizations have a huge percentage that go to administrative fees and not much of the money actually contributes to the cause. Visit Charity Navigator to see ratings of integrity for different charities and donor advisories for shady business for charities in the US, or Charity Intelligence Canada for Canadian charities. 

Donate your Birthday

Instead of having people purchase gifts for your birthday, you can donate your birthday instead. 100% of the money will be going towards clean water projects. You can do this with other causes that are important to you too. 

Volunteer your time instead of tithing

Tithe refers to one-tenth of your income to pay towards contribution of a religious organization or government institution. Many of are taught to donate 10% of our income to charity or non-profit organizations. If you are in a tight financial situation, volunteer your time. Provide a service of value. 

For example, if you want to stick with 10% tithing, calculate what you make 10% weekly per hour e.g. if I made $500 per week, I'd be donating $50 worth of my time per week. If I get paid $15 per hour, then I'd need to donate approximately 3 hours and 20 minutes of my time. Choose to do it with the organization of your choice. 

Donate to Medicine

Donate your Blood

If you are an otherwise healthy adult, you can make arrangements for blood donation. Check Canadian Blood Services with basic eligibility

Donate your Hair to Cancer 

You can make wigs and hair donations to cancer patients through Canadian Cancer Society

Donate Your Clothing, Furniture, Electronics. 

Donate gently used clothing to your local Good Will or clothing donation bank. Rather than having them sit in your closet unused. Don't throw out old working electronics or furniture as several organizations (e.g. Canadian Diabetes Association, Oasis Clothing Banks, Furniture Bank, Good Will and Habitat for Humanity's ReStore) often make good use of such items. 

Donate your Time and Skills

Sometimes donating your skills and time (i.e. volunteering) in my opinion is one of the best ways to give back. Not only does this give back to the community, but you also build skills, and build a network that may lead to future career opportunities.

Please let me know of any money saving tips you may have!

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