In the PFBlog community at least, there is no shortage of people who give money to charities, churches, and other volunteer organizations. We give a paltry sum to our church every month, but I don’t really feel like I’m actively giving until I see the deduction when I’m checking our account balance online. If what we’re giving is some of our disposable income, are we really sacrificing anything?
In giving in this way, I feel like it is too easy. Anyone can mail off a check. Anyone can drop a few bucks into the collection plate. After that, we feel good, and can say in good faith that we’re charitable.
But how many of your give up your time to these organizations as well?
We’re all aware of the saying “time is money.” I’ve written a few posts about my experiences tutoring kids who don’t have the same opportunities that I’ve been given. This academic year I’ve tutored for at least 50 hours. If we apply those hours to my billable rate of $125.00/hour at my job (totally baseless and completely hypothetical, I know), that gives us this calculation of how much money that would have equaled had I just written a check:
50 hours X $125.00/hour = $6,250.00
Not only do these kids have the opportunity to get free extra help, I get the opportunity to make a lasting impression on these kids. For example, the kid who I mainly tutored emails me every week to let me know how he’s doing, and I know for sure that my actions have had an effect on him. That’s something that just writing a check just won’t do. Also for those who are in debt like us and feel like you can’t spare any money for charities, giving up your time is an excellent way to be charitable.
Part of why I am writing this is the comment left by Major, stating his dislike of the Red Cross for ignoring the victims of Hurricane Rita. I’m sorry that that happened to them. One of the reasons that happened is that they didn’t have enough manpower to cover all of the needs of the Gulf Coast at the time. That’s a shame considering how many capable hands we have in the U.S. We all have an extra hour a month – with that hour please consider volunteering your time in addition, or as an alternative, to giving with your paycheck.