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Why I choose to donate locally

It seems everyone has been in the giving spirit lately. The ALS Ice Bucket Challenge really opened a lot of people’s eyes, hearts, and wallets to giving back by donating to charity. While I love that so many people were moved to donate to a cause, I often wonder about how people choose to make the donations they make.


Do you choose to donate because it is trendy, because it is a cause you are really passionate about, has someone you know been affected by the thing/disease/etc. that you are donating to, or do you just choose to try to make the world a better place?

When I think about giving back, my mind immediately thinks locally. I hate seeing my money go to some mysterious place, to some mysterious organization where I have absolutely no idea how the funds are being spent or what good is coming out of it. This is one of the reasons I usually decide to donate locally.

This year has been no exception. With school starting next week in our local district, and back to school night taking place just a few days ahead of the official start date, I knew it was the perfect time to donate locally.

There are so many kids in need; kids who may not get everything they need for a successful year in school simply because parents may lack the resources to provide those needed things. I am a true believer in the idea of the “It Takes a Village” concept, and what better way for me to help those in my very own community then by giving back.

Since I do have the resources available I’m very happy to help others when they need the help – and who knows, maybe someday I will be the person on the recipient end and in need of help. I can only hope that if that day ever comes, someone out there feels the same way and will be as generous and understanding toward others.

This year I was able to purchase and donate eight backpacks, two of them were filled to the brim with enough school supplies to completely outfit four kids with all of their supply needs. I didn’t separate all the supplies out though as I left it to the district to determine who needed what and give them out as requested.


The best thing about giving these supplies to the school wasn’t even the gratitude expressed by the principal (she already has kids in mind who need the items), but it was that I could share in doing this with my family. Before we arrived at the school I thoroughly explained to my kids what we were doing and why.

Being curious kids, they of course asked a few questions about why they couldn’t keep some of the stuff. It was the perfect opportunity for me to explain to them that we already have all these things, but there are kids who may not have them and need these more than we do. They were really excited to be able to help me give these items to the school (despite the look of utter boredom on my son’s face). 🙂

brookwood donation 2014

Such joy comes with giving back that I don’t know if I can fully express the great sense of community and self worth that this creates, but I encourage each and every one of you to take a look at where a need lies in your community and see if you have the means to fill it. Even if it is something as simple as helping your elderly neighbor rake leaves, or driving them to a doctor appointment. There is always a way to help.

If you prefer to donate to an organization, do that instead! Every little bit helps no matter how you choose to donate (time, money, items, etc.).


So tell us…

Have you ever made a donation to a charity or helped give back to your community? What motivated you to do so?



Photo Credit: Andrew Ferguson / Flickr


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17 Responses to Why I choose to donate locally

  1. Crystal August 29, 2014 at 2:55 pm #

    I grew up volunteering as a camp counselor. The majority of the campers received scholarships (that we called camperships). Being able to fundraise for them & donate my own money to help bring kids to camp was such a great experience. Although I didn’t know which children received the financial support, I knew every time I saw a child smile that my handwork had paid off.
    Crystal recently posted…Cinnamon Sugared AlmondsMy Profile

  2. Lisa - BetweentheKids.com August 29, 2014 at 5:20 pm #

    My friend and I just started a nonprofit here in the Houston area to help educate families on natural parenting. I think ALS is a great cause, but I agree…. donating local is fantastic.
    Lisa – BetweentheKids.com recently posted…bitti tutto ones&twos diaper review | #clothdiapersMy Profile

  3. Andrea Kruse August 29, 2014 at 5:35 pm #

    I agree. I try to do things locally or for organizations that have touched our lives personally like Doernbecher Children’s Hospital in Portland, OR. I like getting my kids involved with giving. It has become a school time tradition in our house. Love how many backpacks you donated! You rock.
    Andrea Kruse recently posted…Simple Mexican Corn & Zucchini Soup with Corn Bread & Sausage Stuffed JalapenosMy Profile

  4. Lynsey @MoscatoMom August 29, 2014 at 6:10 pm #

    I donate mostly to our local animal shelters, but have done a couple drives with our church. Always good to give back. Just makes you feel good to know you helped someone.
    Lynsey @MoscatoMom recently posted…#Whole30 Approved BaconnaiseMy Profile

  5. Kayla August 29, 2014 at 7:05 pm #

    There are little ones that will definitely benefit from your fam’s generosity — those backpacks are great! We choose to donate locally + globally.
    Kayla recently posted…prosperity candle set giveawayMy Profile

  6. Kimberly Grabinski August 29, 2014 at 8:43 pm #

    Wow, how great that you were able to donate those backpacks! We donate to charities close to our hearts, often local animals rescues.
    Kimberly Grabinski recently posted…Embracing My Mess with Delta Faucet #HappiMessMy Profile

  7. Sara P. (@SensiblySara) August 29, 2014 at 8:44 pm #

    I donate because I am passionate about it. I don’t want to donate because someone has challenged me to.
    Sara P. (@SensiblySara) recently posted…What makes me great? And 5 ways to boost your confidence!My Profile

  8. Karen August 29, 2014 at 9:04 pm #

    I like to give my time and money to certain charities, but I also have been known to give money to people who need it more than I do. If I have enough to pay my bills and do for my own family and have something left over, I am willing to help wherever I can. It does bring a lot of joy to me to be able to help someone else.
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  9. valmg @ Mom Knows It All August 30, 2014 at 12:00 am #

    I founded and am the president of a nonprofit. I give time, money and energy to it before any other cause. After that I only give to causes where the bulk o all of the money goes right to the cause.

  10. Karen Coutu August 30, 2014 at 6:43 pm #

    I think it’s great to give to your local schools. I firmly believe that every child deserves an equal chance to excel. How can they do that if they don’t have basic school supplies or something to carry their books home with?
    Karen Coutu recently posted…Lists of Common & Not-So-Common Items to Label for Back-to-School This YearMy Profile

  11. Steph Ryan August 31, 2014 at 7:31 am #

    This is a great article. I try to help out our local animal shelters whenever possible. There are so many pets that need homes and the shelters always need supplies.

  12. Marcia Lee August 31, 2014 at 5:42 pm #

    It feels so rewarding giving back to your own community. For 10 years a friend of mine and I have taught an afterschool Bible club in our local Elementary school. I would like to do more.

  13. Kira September 1, 2014 at 1:54 pm #

    I never really thought about what motivates me to give back besides the fact that it’s something I enjoy doing plus I feel pretty good about it. It’s a win-win.

  14. Tiff @ Babes and Kids September 1, 2014 at 4:17 pm #

    I love that you did this and what an impact it will make. I choose to donate to charities that hit close to home and donating locally is something that I try to do as well.

  15. Valerie Remy-Milora September 1, 2014 at 5:05 pm #

    I love what you are doing and how you make giving back a family affair. We do the same with our girls and give back in a variety of ways to organizations which provide support for local families in need.
    Valerie Remy-Milora recently posted…Britax Advocate Car Seat GiveawayMy Profile

  16. Jennifer @ Mom Spotted September 1, 2014 at 9:27 pm #

    I think that’s awesome! I feel the same as you! I do two separate kinds of donations. I do the used stuff we no longer need or I can’t consign and I also do a lot of new stuff to our community and especially our school. I do milk crates full of supplies for the teachers from us as a family and them my blog makes larger donations for fundraisers throughout the year.
    Jennifer @ Mom Spotted recently posted…Going Back to School with #MammaChiaMagic {Review & #Giveaway}My Profile

  17. Shell Feis September 2, 2014 at 3:26 am #

    That’s so great that you donated all of that! I donate both locally and for the bigger things as well. Growing up we had nothing and so I feel compelled to help whenever and whoever I can.
    Shell Feis recently posted…Become #PartOfOurFamily with Head & ShouldersMy Profile

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