Giving Back on a Budget

When you’re getting out of debt and really motivated toward your goal, you don’t want to take even one cent away from your excess to pay toward your debt snowball. There is one exception: donating. Family members and friends will participate in various charity events over the course of your debt-payoff journey. You don’t want to miss out on helping the charity, your friends, or family due to your budget. Your contribution can be as small as $10 (which could come from your pay period spending money allowance) or as large as $100 depending on how your budget looks that month and how close your heart is to that charity.

Ways to donate without spending money:

  • Volunteer your time. You can volunteer at a local charity race/event, hospital, nursing home, hospice, etc. Volunteering your time is usually more rewarding than donating money. Girls on the Run is a great charity to volunteer for! Reading to a lonely nursing home resident or making a 4 year old cancer patient smile is more rewarding for you and for them than any amount of money you could give.
Our wonderful head coach and I!!

Our wonderful head coach and I!!

  • Run a race for Charity. As you know, this month I am running a marathon to raise money for the American Cancer Society (less than two weeks away!). I used a website called to set up my fundraising profile for FREE! Family and friends are able to click on my link to donate to my cause and it goes straight to the ACS. Some websites offer discounts or free race entry fees when you participate for a fundraiser. This particular site did not.
OBX Marathon

OBX Marathon was my first marathon…unfortunately not for charity…just to see if I could do it!

How much do you donate?

  • This depends. How close are you to the charity or person you’re donating to?
  • For example: If your family is fundraising for a family member or a charity to raise money for an issue that has affected your family, feel free to take a big chunk from your debt snowball money and put it toward this one event. If it’s a distant family member participating in a walk for charity, donate $10-$25…every dollar counts!
  • REMEMBER: The amount you can donate is relative to the amount you make.  If you have $15 extra per month to pay toward debt, that’s the maximum amount that you should be donating.  If you donate beyond your means, it’s not helping anyone out, especially you!  If you have $1,500 extra, donate what you feel is appropriate for the event.

Besides the marathon for the American Cancer Society, a charity that is close to my heart right now is a fundraiser for my niece.  She was born micro-preemie (born at 28 weeks/weight of a 22 week old) and is now an adorable 10 month old. Medical bills have been mounting due to the health issues she has been facing throughout her little life.  Click here to read more.

Born 1 lb 4 oz.  That "bracelet" is her dad's wedding band!

Born 1 lb 4 oz. That “bracelet” is her dad’s wedding band!

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