Monday, January 26, 2009

Methods Madness Marathon!! Free Donations!!

OK...we are down to the wire! Is everyone ready to sprint as we try to finish this Marathon? I am going to try and get us thru the rest of the methods this week, but if not...I will extend it into February.

There are just too many ways to save and make money, I guess!

Today I wanted to focus on what I call Free Donations! I categorize this as a savings for my family.

Why? I like to give 10% or my earnings to church, charities, etc. So, if I find free ways to donate to organizations, churches, schools, I take full advantage of the programs. Although I technically am not the one funding the money for the organizations, the time I spent to take part caused the organization to get their money. Am I being thrify? Of course, that is just me. I want to give what my family has budgeted for donations, but if I can shave a few dollars off here and there by participating in these programs, I will.

First, let me introduce you to a new offer I just found. It is called the Pound for Pound Challenge. And, it is being sponsored by The Biggest Loser and General Mills. You can click here for details. They are donating the money to Feeding America.

But, the overview of the program is this.....

Select General Mills products will have 10 cent labels on packages ( I found mine on my Green Giant Bagged Vegetables ). These are different than the Box Top Labels. You need to cut those labels out and mail them in by December 31, 2009. For every seal they receive, they will donate that 10 cents up to $275,000.

Let's help them reach that number.

Or, you can participate by doing the weight loss challenge. For every pound you lose, they will donate 10 cents to the charity.

And, what are many other programs I like?

I know almost all of you have heard of the Box Tops for Education program. But, do you use it? If you are a mother or father of a school age child, I am sure you probably do. Your education department probably collects them. But, what about those of you who have young children? What about those of you don't have children or are retired? Do you collect and contribute? You should.

First, it is free. I do not suggest you buy particular items simply to get the box tops. But, if you are unloading your groceries and notice a box top, cut it off immediately ( if possible ) and store in a ziplock bag in a safe spot. No matter where you live, if in the USA, you are paying taxes for your school system.

And, the value of your school system ultimately affects the value of your home. So, you should want your schools to flourish. Once a month, when passing by one of your local schools, drop it off. Or, mail it in or to a neighbor's child to take into school. They are valued at 10 cents each.
In a given month, I usually average $1.00 to $4.00.

Want to earn some extra 5 Box Tops for your school right now AND get a fruit roll up sample? Click here and register for the Box Tops Newsletter ( send to your deals email account ).

Another great program is the Campbell's Labels for Education ( 1 to 5 points per label that the school redeems for equipment )

Plus, right now at some grocery stores, you can sign up for eLabels for Education. You originally sign up and link your shopping card number and they will credit your school automatically.

What about your local grocery store?

Our Bigg's collects receipts and gives the school or other charity back a percentage of all receipts collected. Our Kroger's gives the charity of your choice 4% of your purchases! 4%!!! That could be huge, if everyone chose to do this.

All I have to do is load money onto my charity card ( I usually estimate and have them swipe my charity card first ) then pay for that. Then, in a seperate transaction, they ring my groceries and I pay for it with the card I just loaded. If my grocery bill is a little over, I pay the overage. If it is under, I save the extra on my charity card to pay for next weeks groceries. Currently, I have a Kroger card for my son's school.

Do you have a Target card? If so, make sure to link it to a local school today!! They also give a percentage of your purchase to education.

School Spirit Sunbeam Bread Products is another program.

And, finally, if you drink pop from a can, save that pop top. Collect them and then call the Ronald McDonald house and support the home away from home program for seriously ill children.

If you don't see the phone number on the link I listed, just click the Back a Page Button at the top of that site. They collect and recycle these. Last year they raised $30,000 from recycling pop tops...wouldn't it be nice if we could help them raise even more???

If you live in the Cincinnati area, then Cincinnati Bell has a great feature where they donate to the school, $10 for every new registant. Click here to learn more. Thanks goes to Becky V. for reminding me about CB Learn!

What is your homework tonight?

Register for all these companies to begin saving for donations. In addition, you want to be organized. Pull out ziplock bags for all those Box Tops, Seals or Labels you will be cutting out soon.

TurboTax - Choose Easy


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Sweepstakes Girl said...

Hello! Great blog, I drop on it often! I started a Ring for dedicated Entrecard bloggers who are dedicated bloggers. Consider joining? :)

Anonymous said...

I typed in "Easy Saver" to check it out, and the first site I pulled up offers alot of unhappy customers. Caution to others seems warranted if choosing to test out that recommendation.

Carrie @ said...

I have used Easy Saver in the past and love the program.

With any of the recommendations on my site, if you do a search, you will find them listed on Rip Off Report, etc.

The key is to being organized, using the program by its terms/conditions, etc.

People who don't read thru all the details first run into problems.

It is the same with Online Offers, etc. Easy Saver in the past have given me discounted gift card ( which I LOVED ) and many other benefits.

Melissa said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Fujiko said...

Hi Carrie,

I love your logic with donating. I never thought about it that way before. To have the amount "shaved off" of your budgeted donation money... brilliant. It's such a motivator to save those box tops and other things and get involved. With the economy being so bad, schools (and charities) need all the help they can get.

Thanks for your money saving marathon!

Andrea @ Mommy said...

Carrie - good post! Donations are so important right now too. The economy is suffering and the smallest things we can get/donate for FREE help!

I LOVE this PLACE!!!! I never knew about ripoffreport but wldn't check that either since I know you do all the work in finding legit stuff for us! I appreciate it!

Nicole said...

Love this post. I linked it on my blog to share with my readers too.