Apr 13, 2007

Small Dollars to Change the World

Have you ever thought about starting your own very small charitable foundation? I have because then I could decide exactly what my money would be used for. I've found that the most effective charity starts at home and in our church and local communities. If you look, you can find all kinds of ways to work privately for good. You won't be able to take a tax deduction, but you will do your small part to change the world.

Most of the time, only a few dollars are needed to make a huge difference in what happens to people in their future lives. Here are some gifts people have given me or that I have learned about from others:
  1. Buy a subscription to a good Catholic magazine or newspaper for someone special. It really can be a lifelong gift.
  2. Volunteer to take someone's little kids so the couple can see a movie like "Into Great Silence." Pay their way.
  3. Give the altar boy who won't get a nice present for Confirmation (because his family can't afford it) a special gift.
  4. Pay for a small ad in a local paper (either Catholic or secular), volunteering to send a person a free small catechism of the Catholic Church.
  5. Design a contest to draw out the best in Catholic students. Mail an announcement to schools, or ask a Catholic newspaper or church bulletin for free publicity. Give small money prizes.
  6. Pay for a Catholic Information booth at the county fair. Ask the Legion of Mary or another parish organization to staff it with materials and people.
  7. Invite a person to go with you to a Catholic movie, conference, monastery, or shrine and treat them to lunch or dinner. You'll enjoy it more than they will!
  8. Keep your eyes open to help someone with a special need; often it won't cost much.
Now, it's your turn to suggest ideas of where to spend "Small Dollars to Change the World."


Augusta said...

Love this post! I always say, "I wish I could help people, but I don't even know where to start!" I struggle with pride, too, so I think I always want a pat on the back at the end, too, which defeats the whole purpose.
Thank you! Your post has inspired me to start thinking about ways to "change the world" but without being recognized for it...I'm on a secret mission!

Mary said...

Sounds like you have a number of good ideas!