One misconception about helping in your community is the idea that money is the only resource you can give others. I have always had the heart to help, even when cash doesn’t stretch far enough to do so. As my knowledge on stretching the budget for my family grew, I was able to see ways to bless others with little out-of-pocket expense. Here are some paying-it-forward opportunities you and your family can get involved in. The results can have immense blessings for both your family and others!

Use Coupons When You Shop

Here’s another incentive for using coupons! By using coupons with your purchase, you can support your community.  Proctor & Gamble has a program called “P&G Give.” They run different charity events throughout the year.  In March, when you redeemed your P&G March 4th coupons, P&G donated $0.02 between Feeding America and Children's Safe Drinking Water Fund! Not only are you saving on your purchases, you are also supporting these causes. Check out their facebook page to stay up to date on their events.

Purchase Specially-Marked Brand Products

Brand products offer the option to support causes with specially-marked items. Right now, if you purchase specially-marked Cheerios cereal, you can send "Cheer" to military families to thank them for their commitment to our country.  For each postcard received, Cheerios will donate $1 to the USO to help support programs for military families. Cheerios has already donated $150,000 and will donate up to an additional $100,000 based upon the number of postcards received by November 30, 2012.

Click to Give Facebook and Twitter Offers

Most companies offer opportunities to support causes by clicking on their specific tabs or liking their Facebook Pages. These options typically come with no purchase necessary. Check out some of these offers:

  • Click to Donate a Febreze Set & Refresh Product along with a care package of toiletries, magazines, letters, and more to a U.S. hero serving in combat. Only one donation per person. Up to 50,000 Set & Refresh products donated total. No purchase necessary.
  • Donate a Tweet! For every Retweet, Feed America will help provide 40 meals to fight hunger!
  • Share your breakfast on Kellogg’s Facebook Page, and Kellogg’s will donate a breakfast for a child in need up to $200,000 – the equivalent of one million school breakfasts shared.
  • Like P&G Children's Safe Drinking Water Facebook Page, and P&G will donate $0.02 to the Children's Safe Drinking Water Fund to a maximum of 1 million Likes ($20,000).
  • Click to Give Free Mammograms.  Every time you click on the pink "Click Here to Give – it's FREE" button, you generate funding for free mammograms for women in need.

Donate Points Via Membership Programs

Pampers Gifts to Grow Program offers the option to donate your points to a cause of your choice! You can get 100 points which you can donate just for signing up.

Read A Book, Donate A Book

Here's a great way to combine the love of reading with the power to help others! We Give Books offers over 100 children's books that you can read for free with your child online. After you read it, they donate a book to one of several global campaigns that you can choose from. The more your children read, the more books can be shared to children who need them!

These are just a few ideas to get you started. Couponing and deals have blessed my family immensely. It is a joy to know that cash does not limit my heart to help and that I am able to join my favorite brands in supporting my community and non-profit organizations.

This has been a guest post by Cheryl from Snohomish, WA
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