Giving When Money is Tight

As we enter November we embark on the most wonderful holiday season. A season full of many things, including charity.

Giving to those less fortunate is something I feel everyone should do. There would be a whole lot more good in this world if we all gave to those less fortunate. Giving doesn’t just have to be of the monetary form though. Giving back may not be in your holiday budget. There are many ways to give back or contribute without needing any money.

Grow a Mustache or Cut Your Hair

It’s November which means men all over the world (or at least Canada and US) will be growing their mustaches out and raising money to do so in support of mens health and prostate cancer.

giving when money is tight

If you’re a man, shaving on November 1st and not doing so again until December 1st, while fundraising money, is a great and fun way to give back. Ladies with long hair can donate virgin hair to locks of love as well. An organization that makes human hair wigs for cancer patients.

Giving What You Have

A lady my sister knows recently found out she was pregnant. Her and her husband are going through a tough time financially (something I know a lot about!) so I offered up for her to have our infant carseat. With expiration dates on carseats now, it is unlikely that we will have another baby before this seat expires so I wanted to give it to someone who could benefit from it. I didn’t want to sell it since we didn’t pay much for it (year for store clearance sales) and would rather see someone just like this benefit from it. I’m glad it’s going to a good home.

I don’t know how it happens, but every so often, my pantry seems to get full of food I know my family won’t eat. Maybe we bought it for recipes that never came together, I’m not sure why or how this stuff ends up in my home but about once per year we go through our non-perishable foods and donate to our local food bank.

I also found out that you can give your boat for charity and receive a tax deduction for your effort. Once you donate your boat to a registered charity, it is then sold at auction with the money going to a good cause. You can actually choose from a list of charities, including children’s charities, diabetes management solutions, religious groups, and animal-based charities, depending on where you feel the money is most needed. You can donate any type of boat that you might have and the amount that the boat sells for at auction is what is given to the charity of your choice.

Going through stuff you already own and don’t need, and donating to someone who could use it is a great, and easy way to give.

Give Your Time

Giving your time is probably one of the most precious gifts you can give. I can tell you that if I give my time to someone or something, it must be important to me. I am a very busy person who cherishes every minute I have. I am strategic with how I manage my time and who I share it with. Giving time can be a huge help to someone.

While in my undergrad I went to the local veterans hospital a few times. Often doing nothing more than sitting and talking to a few patients. You can give time to a friend or family member who needs help or you can give time to a local charity that could use you. You decide how to best manage your time and decide who and what would benefit most from it. Never underestimate how even a few minutes volunteering can help someone.


Just because money is tight doesn’t excuse one from giving. Give time, give stuff or participate in a meaningful cause. None of these cost you money but all have the potential to make you feel like a million bucks.

17 thoughts on “Giving When Money is Tight

  1. Volunteering and giving your time is a great way to help your favorite charity or nonprofit when your own budget is tight. I don’t know any organization that couldn’t use extra help, especially around the holidays. I also love the idea of donating items, like the baby car seat, to people who need it more than you’d need the money from selling the items. Great ideas here!

  2. In the scenario you describe, passing along the car seat is fine, but on the receiving end you have to be careful as you have to be absolutely certain that the carseat was never involved in an accident, in which case it’s to be replaced. If you get in an accident and file a claim, most insurance companies will pay to replace car seats, even if they weren’t outwardly damaged. So, point being, I would only accept a car seat from someone I knew and trusted personally.

    • Oh I totally agree with you, I would never accept a carseat/crib from anyone other than people I knew. My sister knows this lady well and I can say for 100% certainty that we were never in an accident which is why I wanted to give it to someone I knew rather than sell. You’re not allowed to donate carseats/cribs or highchairs to not-for-profits around here but it seemed wasteful to just throw out when it doesn’t expire for almost 2 years.

  3. Food pantries and soup kitchens are often always in need of volunteers and there are always hungry people out there that need the services they provide. Whether you help with accepting and sorting donated goods or help in the kitchen with a meal, it’s a great way to give back this season.

  4. No time is too small to volunteer! The rescue group I work with is always in need of a person to put in an hour here or an hour there!

    But the biggest incentive if you have money (or can justify dipping in to the pot) is the tax write-offs! December 31st is coming!

  5. Volunteering time is a great low-cost way to give back to a community. Donating clothing or items around the house to Goodwill is also another way to reduce the clutter in your home and help others out. No one thing is too small when giving back!

  6. Giving time can almost be more rewarding than giving money. My husband is hesitant to donate cash to causes because you never know how those funds are used or how much actually ends up contributing to the people who need it. I like working with Toys for Tots this time of year — there’s nothing better than buying warm clothing and toys for kids in need. I also like supporting our troops in some way; last year, Sam’s Club had a list of items soldiers were in need of, so we bought a couple things to donate. I hope to do more this year. Great post!

  7. I completely agree.

    It’s all about thinking of others, and not just yourself.

    Every penny counts, and can help a person in some way.

    Even the smallest thing counts.


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