Friday, December 4, 2009

How to be Charitable Regardless of the Economy!

Today more than ever Charities need your help…but before you say, “I am almost a Charity Case Myself…How can I help?” ….read the following mind stretching idea’s that will help YOU give even more than you did before the media started to use the ‘R’ word! (You know the word the one with Recess in it!)

1. What if you exchange your service for a tax receipt…. so, if you have book keeping or accounting skills. Or if you have a legal background… or if you have mad chef skills…. Speak with the charity to see is they would be willing to exchange your service for a little piece of paper that saves you money in tax season.

2. Christmas Jars… (my family and I read a book several years ago by that name.) All year long, we through our change into a jar… then in December, we pick a person or family to give the jar to. We don’t tell them why or who we are…we simply put the jar on the step and run away.

3. Recycle … go through your closets, and shelves..tidy up the shed and the garage… and take that stuff into a shelter or Goodwill or Salvation Army. You’ll help families in need and in some will get a tax receipt ….or store credit that you can hand to the next person walking in the door!

4. Give Flowers, when we lived in the city, on our trips to Costco, I would buy a bouquet of roses. (crazy inexpensive) then on the way home we would give half of them away. Several times, we would stop at the local coffee shop and my children would walk up to a sweet older woman ..hand her the roses and say something like, “ the universe wanted you to have a special gift today..and here they are.” Hand her the flowers and walk away. She would either have tears streaming down her cheeks or a shocked look on her face…but it didn’t matter. Then the rest of the way home, my kids and I would make up stories about how the rest of the ladies day would go. (This is something that the giver gets so much more out of…than the receiver…try it to see what I mean)

5. Charity Credit Cards… did you know that some credit cards give a small percentage of the money that you spend to charities… for example the Bank of America’s World WildLife Fund Visa gives that charity $100 when you sign up plus .$0.25 for every $100 that you spend. If you are using plastic anyways… might as well give it to a good cause.

6. Speaking of Plastic… why not donate some Air Miles to a charity like Ronald McDonald house so that families can fly to be together with their children when they are having treatments.

7. If YOU work for a large corporation, they may already have a matching charity gift program in place…that way for every dollar that you give.. your place of employment will double the donation. It is worth looking into or encouraging your employer to start.

8. What about sponsoring a child or a family as a group? Have several friends or co-workers come together to sponsor a child… that way people get help..and you don’t have to do it alone. (A World Vision Sponsor is tripling any donation given to World Vision in the month of December.)
9. Most of the time, we really don’t need any more things to add to our already too big “Stuff” collection …so why not ask that the givers on your list..donate to your favorite charity instead of allowing your “Stuff” to take over your space.
10. If you are a business owner and have excess inventory… why not donate it? For examples, if you have a shoe store..donate last year’s shoes to the sports team at school. If you have a jersey store..why not do the same thing? Schools need things like art supplies, musical instruments, craft supplies, games, sports equipment and soo much more. {Need a school / organization to donate to? Here is my favorite.. Team Genesis expanding on the core methods of mentoring athletes, academic success, and the overall attainment of personal goals… inspiring the students of today to be the Leaders of tomorrow. }
11. Bikes that your children have out grown..give them to a family that may not be able to afford one for their children. (write a note on it and leave it on their step.)

12. Lots of companies honor their employees that volunteer… some give awards that include a cash gift to the winners charity. If you have a criminal records check done.. you can volunteer as a coach or assistant in everything from cheerleader to basketball.

13. Turn your Christmas party into a fundraiser or food drive…

14. Encourage company management to sponsor the Operation Red-nose campaign …(or whatever you call it in your town.) Local University or College supply’s designated drivers to bring home party goers and their cars…so they don’t drink and drive. It is all donation ‘s to support the athletic department.
15. Christmas Baking… if you are doing it anyways..why not make double the batch and drop it off with a family that may not have the time or resources to bake their own.

16. Coats… if you have winter clothing or blankets that are gently used, drop them off at the shelter to keep other people warm.

17. Gift Books to the school Library. You can add a tag that say’s this book was donated by “insert child’s name and year.” Then as your kids grow, they can she how many children get to check out the book that they donated.

18. Babysit… for a neighbor (unless you live in the UK where it is not legal,) so that they can finish up their shopping without packing the kids to the mall.

19. Helping Hands …Carl Van Haght and some other Earth Angels of is mentoring people with their ‘online’ skills to help give a hand up rather than a hand out. HelloHello.Net is: A Social Networking Portal where you can upload your profile, search for friends, become friends, upload pictures and videos, chat, blog, email, use Twitter & Facebook on the site, check profiles, update your online status, start groups, post a poll, add an event, and much, much more. Compared to all other similar concepts that make billions of dollars per portal per year and don’t share this revenue with their members, HelloHello.Net pays 60% of all income from different advertising sources on HelloHello.Net back to all members. HelloHello.Net also has a strong mission regarding charity and fundraising that is why helping hands is so successful! 60% of all income from advertising and other ventures will be paid back to the members. 38% of all income will go to HelloHello.Net (administration). 2% will be given to well established and reputable charity organizations. 50 cents will go to charity each time a transaction is made via PinPay (Merchant). Check out to Social Network for $$$’s for Charity and YOU!
20. Never underestimate the gift of a smile, holding a door open, or helping someone carry some packages.

21. Shovel a neighbors drive way.

22. Clean your child’s room (if you don’t normally do it.)

23. Visit people in an old folk’s home. Adopt a grandparent!

24. Give as you earn Payroll giving is a simple, tax-efficient way of donating through your salary. Because your donation is taken from your salary before tax is deducted, it costs you less you get the tax credits.

25. Give More..Get More! Want your donation dollars to have the greatest impact possible? Make your contributions to GlobalGiving projects around the globe go further with $250,000 of available matching funds!

26. Give the world & YOUrself the Gift of Peace... by making a conscious choice to Stand for Peace. Download your own unique Peace Certificate at all you do is add your name and email... and you can post your own peace certificate proudly anywhere you choose.

So there YOU have it… my little list of how YOU can really make a great impact no matter what your resources look like. Plus…as an added bonus… every time YOU decide to make a difference for someone else, YOU are making a deposit into your Karmic Bank Account… and it never hurts to have some Karmic Cash laying around for the times that you need it. Remember that “Givers, Gain!” No matter how small the amount may be… every little bit of service that you offer, makes a difference for all parties involved. The cool thing about the list above…is that it really doesn’t matter what time of year it is… YOU can still be of service… be charitable with your time, skills, love, and friendship. I promise you that when your heart is in the right place… you are aligning yourself in the flow of abundance. Allow it to flow to you and through you, to create a cycle of giving and receiving.

Wishing YOU a Day filled with Service & Understanding.
Humbly Yours,

P.S. Those are 3 of my Boys in the picture...

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