One of the best ways to keep your finances on the right track is to give to charity. Giving money away can be a great way to ensure that you have well-rounded finances. However, you don’t have to just send money to your favorite legitimate charity. There are a number of creative ways to give to charity. Here are some of the more interesting ways that you can help a good cause without breaking the bank:
I’ve recently started doing my ordering via AmazonSmile. Amazon will donate a small percentage of your eligible purchases to a charity you can get behind. However, it’s important to note that the amount given is rather small. You would have to spend $10,000 on Amazon in order for it to amount to a $50 gift.
I like using AmazonSmile because I can shop as normal, and the charity gets a little boost. However, I know that using AmazonSmile is no substitute for giving my time or money to a worthwhile cause. So I don’t let AmazonSmile replace my charitable giving efforts; I let it enhance them a little bit.
One way you can save money on your cell phone bill is to sign up with a no-contract plan. There are a number of companies out there that offer this plans, and one of them is GIVmobile, which is associated with PTEL Mobile. A portion of your monthly plan payment goes to charity, and you don’t have to do anything special.
Along with AmazonSmile, this is part of a movement toward “slacktivism,” which provides you with a way to feel warm and fuzzy about your ability to give, without actually requiring you to do anything extra. As with AmazonSmile, it’s important to realize that GIVmobile is more about enhancing your efforts (without costing you more), rather than replacing your current charitable giving efforts.
Aside from the fact that you can help a charity, GIVmobile also offers low-cost “unlimited everything” plans and some promos on great smart phones. So it’s worth looking into to save money at the same time.
Donate Credit Card Rewards
Rather than use your credit card rewards yourself, you might be able to donate them to charity. This is a great way to put your credit card rewards to work for a good cause. Your donated credit card rewards can provide cash, merchandise, travel, or other perks to a charity that might need them. Find out whether or not this is an option, and consider donating credit card rewards.
There are some companies that will match your charitable contributions. This is one of the best ways to make the most of a charitable contribution, since it doubles your own giving, up to a certain amount. Talk to your company’s HR department about the possibility of a company match. You might be surprised to find that you can increase the effectiveness of your donation by getting your company to match it.
Click to Donate
There are some sites, like Care2, that are set up so that sponsors donate when you click on their ads. If you don’t mind looking at ads, and clicking around a little bit, your Internet surfing can help various causes. Of course, like many of these other methods, the amount of good you do is somewhat limited. But, it is one way to help out a little bit in your spare time.
Volunteer and Get Local
If you really want to see your donation efforts at work, though, you need to volunteer locally. You don’t even have to lay out money. Donate your time or your goods. If a local charity needs help advertising, and you are good with social media, do what you can to help out. There are lots of ways that you can volunteer locally. I also like to give to my local food bank, where I can actually see the results of my giving. To make it easy on myself, I actually have an automatic payment made each month.
You don’t have to give massive amounts of money all at once to be effective. A monthly donation, or a little “slacktivism” on top of your current efforts can be creative ways to do a little more good.