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Steve Alvest


Novel ways of donating money

If you're going to give your money away, you might as well have fun with it.

    1. Anonymously send out the book $100 Startup with $200 in cash

    The book is called "$100 Startup," and it's by Chris Guillebeau. Give $200 to account for inflation and maybe it'll make it more likely someone will actually implement the ideas in the book.

    2. Bring neighbors together

    Find 2-5 people in need who live near one another. Anonymously send each $100 in cash with instructions to keep some and use the other portion to help someone they love. Make the return addresses to each other, so maybe they will all get to know each other when they investigate.

    3. Pay for someone else's layaway items

    This was in the news a few years ago, but the hype has probably died down by now. Around Christmas time, go pay for someone else’s layaway items. Make sure there are toys included, so you are helping families in need.

    4. Donate on

    I've done this before, and it's very rewarding. You can choose a specific teacher and project to donate money to. Usually, the kids will write you "thank you" cards for funding their class project.

    5. Donate through an auction

    Get in a bidding war on eBay or other auction with the intention of winning and spending way too much for something. Many auctions will state that they are for charity, and you can focus on those types of auctions.

    6. Tip generously

    Leave a massive tip to someone who looks like they are in need. This idea is great because you can specifically target nice people that you like.

    7. Randomly donate to a stranger

    I keep getting spam emails from random wealthy people in different countries who want to donate their life savings to me. I recently received one from some guy named "Warren E Buffett" with a Gmail address. I never respond. We should turn the tables. The idea is simple. Send money to someone you don’t know in a poor country.

    8. Lose your wallet on purpose

    “Lose” a wallet with $100 in it and contact info. If someone returns it, give them $100 plus another $100.

    9. Reward the starving entrepreneurs

    When you see poor or homeless people trying to make a living using entrepreneurship skills, like selling poetry on the street, or the poor family trying to make money by collecting and returning bottles, buy whatever they're selling for a large amount of money like $100.

    10. Hide money where needy people frequent

    Leave money and a note hidden somewhere where people in need frequent, like youth hostels or soup kitchens.

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