By Emily Lenhard
Most of us don’t have dream salaries at our first job, but we still want to give back to important causes, especially our parishes. Here are some tips for making each paycheck count.
- DRAW OUT A STRICT BUDGET. Outline all your monthly expenses and evaluate the remaining amount for donation possibili-ties. Don’t focus on giving a flat sum that is out of bounds for you. Set a realistic amount that you can give consistently.
- PICK A CHARITY CLOSE TO YOUR HEART. Saving for a cause you care about will motivate you to stay on budget. In addition to your church, you may consider a well-known nonprofit or a local group.
- SAVE WHERE YOU CAN. Return cans and bottles and collect coupons to lower grocery costs. Check out public trans-portation or carpooling options to save on gas. Whatever you’re able to save can go into your giving fund.
- CASH ONLY. Avoid using auto-pay apps and credit cards. Something about having to physically hand away your money will make you think twice about each purchase. Collect the coins from your change and save them in a jar for donations. You’ll be surprised how fast they can add up.
- TIME AND TALENT ARE ALWAYS WINNERS. If you’re really struggling to donate money, donating your time is a valuable alternative. Check your parish website or bulletin to see where you can help.