Giving Through Saving

Are you a saver? Are you a handcrafter? Do you enjoy helping others? I fall into all 3 categories which was the basis for starting my blog; Coupons, Crafts and Causes earlier this year. I wanted to educate others how easy and inexpensive it is to help others and give back no matter how much time and/or money you have. There are an endless number of non-profit organizations that are looking for items to be donated. There are several items that you throw away or recycle on a daily basis that someone within your community, our country or even our troops overseas could put to good use.
One of the easiest ways to help is to save the Box Tops for Education emblems found on a select variety of General Mills products and Labels for Education emblems found on Campbell’s products (soups, Franco American, Swanson, Prego and more). Both of these can be collected and donated to a participating school. You can send them with a student or employee, drop them off at the school office or mail them in. The school earns so much per emblem submitted to use towards a variety of items for the school system. We have been saving them since both programs began. Our kids are now through school, so we save them for one of our friend’s to send with her children.
Did you know that you can donate your pop can tabs to participating McDonald’s Restaurants to benefit families of the Ronald McDonald House?
Another easy way is to donate your newspapers and magazines to a variety of different organizations. In my area, there are several local schools and churches with Newspaper Bins in their parking lot where you drop them off anytime.
I use my couponing skills to get products for free or almost free that we won’t use to donate to local food drives or pantries. Even if you aren’t an avid couponer there are ways in which you could still save and donate. For example, when your store has a Buy 1; Get 1 Free sale and you don’t need 2 of a particular item, consider donating the 2nd one. One of our local stores runs a Buy 10 participating items and get the 11th one free. If you only need 9 items, consider picking up the additional items to donate. During school supply season, consider picking up a few of the inexpensive school supplies while at the grocery, drug or office supply store and donate to a school supply drive.
Did you know that our troops can use expired manufacturer coupons? The PX and Commissaries will allow them to use expired coupons for a certain length of time. You can also send non-expired coupons as well.
I enjoy sewing, crocheting and card making. There are many organizations (non-profit and otherwise) that are in need of handmade items to donate to those in need. I’m a member of a quilt club that donates handmade quilts to those with serious illnesses, homeless, been abused and more. They also donate stuffed animals wrapped in a baby doll sized quilt to children that have been abused, lost their home to fire, or battling a serious illness. They also donate baby quilts to pregnancy centers and hospitals. Check with local hospitals, nursing homes, pregnancy centers and non-profit organizations to see what they are in need of.
I also buy fleece remnants at my local fabric store to make scarves and hats throughout the year to donate to coat drives in the fall. If you knit or crochet, this is something you could make from your scrap yarn.
You could make lap robes and walker caddies for local nursing homes; baby blankets, burp cloths and pacifier holders for pregnancy centers. There are a lot of smaller items that you could make out of your scrap materials.
These are just a few of the many ways that you can help by giving back. Of course, there are plenty of fundraisers you could purchase from to help, make a monetary donation, or volunteer your time. I’m more of a behind-the-scenes type person, so I prefer purchasing from fundraisers and saving items to donate when I can.
You can find the links on my website for machinery required for water treatment plant more information under the “Causes” tab.
For couponing tips, printable coupons, coupon database, household tips, recipes, to order a how are factory machines made copy of my book “Couponing and Other Ideas That Make Cents”, and more, visit my website: .
Have questions? Feel free to contact me: [email protected]

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