How do I give when money is tight

“I’d love to give more, but I just don’t have much extra money right now.”

Are you in that position? Most of us are, at one point or another. And while there are always countless opportunities to serve that don’t require any money (and I will share many ideas in the future), sometimes it feels great to be able to give things. So what if you feel like financially, you have nothing to give?

Time to get creative!

I am a firm believer in couponing. There are a few reasons why, but it boils down to this: the more I save, the more I can give.

Which kind of rocks.

This blog is not a couponing blog – there are LOTS of amazing blogs out there already that are dedicated to helping you find the best deals. (If you need suggestions, please let me know and I’d be happy to recommend some.) But I did want to share two small simple things you can do to stretch your budget, and hopefully enable you to be able to give more generously.

My tips today are based off of two guest posts I’ve written for TodaysTheBestDay.com. (If you’re a parent, you should check it out – she is such a great encouragement!) I have begun a series of guest posts about saving money over there. Rather than repeat everything in this article, I invite you to take a look at these links.

First of all, using coupons at Target can save you a TON of money. If you’re new to couponing, this is the store I recommend you start at. Why? Because there are so many different kinds of deals (store coupons, manufacturer’s coupons, Cartwheel, sales, gift card deals, and mobile deals) – and you can stack these deals to save amazing amounts of money. To get the nitty-gritty details, check it out here:

http://www.todaysthebestday.com/target-couponing-101/

Here’s an example of a deal that I did today (excluding tax):

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Cost before coupons: $26.12

Cost after coupons: $15.10

Gift cards received: $10.00

Net cost: $5.10

My local women’s shelter is in constant need of feminine care items. (Yours probably is, too.) They go through them so quickly that they are in constant demand. So when I see a sale like this, I stock up! For just over $5, I was able to buy a small pile that can be a genuine blessing to a woman in crisis in my area.

If you are on a tight budget, I consider you to think about learning how to utilize coupons. Often, I am able to pick up items entirely free (like the toothbrush). I love knowing that my time and effort can provide a basic necessity for someone in need. Alternatively, if you are able to whittle down how much you spend at the store, you can use a portion of those savings to donate to a cause you’re passionate about. You have more money in your pocket AND you get to help out a great cause. Win-win!

Second, if you have a smartphone, did you know you that there are apps that you can use to earn free gift cards? My review of my favorite app is found here:

http://www.todaysthebestday.com/how-to-make-money-with-your-smartphone/

There are three ways that I have used Shopkick to give more generously:

  • Before Christmas last year, I saved up my points and redeemed them for a $25 gift card to add to my husband’s stocking. It was really fun to earn something for him that didn’t come from our mutual budget.
  • I have cashed out points for a Target gift card and used it to buy items to donate to those in need.
  • This week I am going to redeem points for another Target gift card and use it to do my grocery shopping. I will then take the money I saved in my grocery budget and use it to do some good!

So there are two ways I’ve found that have allowed me to stretch my charitable giving budget. I hope there’s been something in here that will be useful to you! Why don’t you set a small goal for yourself? See if you can save or earn an extra few dollars this week, and then use it to spread some sunshine. You’ll be glad you did!!

Thanks for reading, and have a wonderful day.

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