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Giving Time or Treasures

By: Inter Valley Health Plan

When your budget is tight, it can be difficult to support the charitable organizations you love. But the good news is that giving your money isn't the only way you can help! Here are seven ways you can support your favorite causes without spending money. 


·         If you're an energetic person, you could actively raise funds to donate. For example, you might participate in a walkathon or simply dedicate the proceeds of your garage sale. Think creatively: you could host a talent show or a neighborhood car wash event, and perhaps get matching funds from local businesses.

·         If you have the courage for public speaking, you could do a presentation at your church or social club on behalf of your favorite charity. Some organizations will send you a kit with everything necessary for a compelling presentation. Speech-writing expertise is not required; you just need to be willing to stand in front of an audience and talk about a cause that matters to you.

·         If you have free time, you could volunteer with a local organization. Special skills aren't necessary; the gift of your time spent answering phones or doing general office tasks will be greatly appreciated.

·         If you grow a garden, you could donate produce to a food bank. In recent years, food banks have been serving more people than ever before; they need all the vegetables you can spare. Why not plant an extra row of peppers or expand your squash patch next season? Every time you tend your garden, you'll have the joy of knowing that you are growing a gift for people in your own community.

·         If you knit or crochet, you could make warm hats, blankets, and other items to donate through groups or churches. Many such charities exist; check online to find one that appeals to you.

·         If you enjoy physical work, you could help build a house for a family in your area through Habitat for Humanity. You don't need construction experience because they'll teach you what you need to know on site. .          

·         If you love to write letters, you could become pen pals with a deployed or wounded serviceperson through programs such as Adopt A U.S. Soldier or Operation Gratitude. Another option is to send cards to children around the world through a humanitarian institution such as Compassion International. Even if you aren't financially sponsoring a child with them, they may welcome your interest in writing letters because children love to get mail, and many sponsors fail to write.

You can help make the world a better place even if your finances are limited, because the gifts of your time and creativity are needed even more than your money. Consider your interests and talents, and find a charity that needs what you can do. You may find that being an active participant is much more satisfying than sending a check.

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