Giving Back During a Recession
Things are tough. You can see it everywhere you look. Unemployment at record levels. Gas prices getting higher. Our government in gridlock. Foreclosure at a record high along with poverty levels.
This is just in America.
Now, imagine living over-seas, watching your child die due to starvation. Imagine that the house you lived in was demolished because of war. Think about how we, with the simple turn of a faucet, can get a glass of water, but thousands upon thousands of people in drought stricken countries do not have one single drop to drink.
All across the globe, we are in crisis. But even in a financial crisis, there is still a need to give back. Many people feel that they as one person cannot do anything to change the course of humanity. This is simply false. Some people think they can only make a difference if they contribute a vast some of money or large quantities of food. This is also false. 1 single person can change the course of humanity even with the smallest of donations. I have recently started to give back, even though I am technically under the poverty level, but in a way that does not break the bank and also makes me feel as though I have contributed to the world in a positive way.
Here are 5 easy ways to give back to your community, the world, and humanity as a whole:
Leftover’s from a Dinner Out? Give them Away!
While driving into our local strip mall to go to dinner, I noticed a man sitting on the curb with a sign that said “Homeless. Hungry. Alone.” I had noticed him before a couple of days ago, sitting in the same spot, in the pouring rain, holding the same sign. As I drove by, I said “I am going to bring him back my left overs.” We sat and enjoyed our dinner. I ordered the most expensive thing on the menu and I did this on purpose. In the back of my mind I knew I was going to bring my him my leftovers and I wanted him to have something amazing. I ate half of my steak, half of the potatoes and half of the asparagus and proclaimed I was full. On our way out of the strip mall, the man was gone, but I noticed 2 bottles of water and a box of cereal in the same spot he has been sitting for probably a few weeks now. I got out of my car, walked to the curb and placed the tightly sealed box down next to the full bottles of water. Even though he wasn’t there when I dropped it off…I knew he had a good meal.
Donate the random $0.03 in your PayPal Account
I think this is a really great way to donate to a charity or a cause that is close to your heart if you are living paycheck to paycheck. As a Business Gypsy, I tend to use PayPal to get paid because I have many clients in many other states and I cannot afford the drive to pick up a check. When I get paid for my business services, PayPal takes 3% of the amount paid through their service. A lot of the time after depleting my account, I have a random $0.03 that I cannot do anything with. So, I have started to donate my leftover pennies to different charities (the one’s that allow contributions under $1.00). There are 94.4 Million people who use PayPal. If everyone donated $0.03 to one charity, that would raise $2,820,000. Imagine what could be accomplished.
Donate Used Clothes & Other Items
I love donating clothing. It is actually something I do 4 times a year but lately I have been giving more away. With every change of the season, I clear out my clothing from the last season to make room in my closet for the new season. I place last season’s clothes in a box until that season comes around again. When that season comes around again, I try on all of the clothes that were in the box. Any of the clothes that do not fit or are out of style, I put in a bag and take them to the Good Will or the Salvation Army. I do this with everything…shoes…purses…furniture…TVs! I even donated my junk car!
Use Social Media to Network Fundraisers, Charities & Causes
One person knowing about a fundraiser, charity or cause is fine and all but imagine if all 1,478 Twitter Followers and 774 Facebook Friends found out about the cause?! Now imagine all of those Followers & Fans told their Followers & Fans and then they told their Followers & Fans…and you get the idea. I have mentioned countless fundraisers and charities on my Facebook, Twitter & Blog and I will continue to do so. In this fast-paced digital era, word of mouth can spread in an instant. Let’s use social media outlets to our advantage and spread the word about those in need and how we can help!
This is one of the easiest ways to give back during a financial crisis. Volunteering does not cost a thing but your desperately needed time and energy. Another good thing about volunteering is that it is so diverse! You can literally walk into any type of shelter, ask if they need volunteers, and they will ask when you can start. Pick an organization that is personal to you and that also interests you! Volunteer at an animal shelter. Help out by cleaning up a roadside in your neighborhood. Volunteer at a soup kitchen or even a nursing home. You will feel good and so will the people you helped.
Giving back during a Recession isn’t always easy. Its rough out there and at times, it’s even hard to make the bills… But if we start to give back and help others who are suffering more than we are, that positive energy will double back and things will start to look a little brighter on our end.