This week I was reading about the SNAP challenge in which Joshua Malina is participating. [For those who don't want to click through, the challenge is to eat for one week using only the amount of money you would have if you relied solely on SNAP to pay for your food. At the end of the challenge, participants are encouraged to share their experiences and donate the additional funds, or the amount they see fit.] The challenge not only raises money for those who need it, but it raises awareness.
Ten months ago, I had this idea. The idea was to encourage other bloggers to take the time to find something they could go without. It didn’t have to be anything grand. A cup of coffee, perhaps. A handful of ebooks. Whatever they chose, the idea was to give it up for just one month, then pass those savings on to someone else who needed it.
The response was heartwarming. People gave up all sorts of things in the name of helping their favorite charities. Some bloggers who were already skimping and saving to get by got creative and gave their time instead of money.
While Go Without did result in donations being sent to various charities, the part that I appreciated most from reading various participants posts was how people were more conscious of how they spend their money and time, and more aware of the needs of others around them.
So, given the number of new readers that have accumulated over the last ten months, I’m issuing the challenge once again.
What can YOU go without?
Find something that you can give up for a week or even a month. It could be your Starbucks run, buying lunch instead of brown-bagging it, or takeout on Friday night instead of cooking. [I keep using food-centric examples, but it could also be that expensive salon hair cut, those new shoes you don't need, the latest video game, etc...You could even participate in the aforementioned SNAP challenge.]
Take the funds you would have spent on these items, items that may seem necessary to you, but to many people are true luxuries, and give them to the charity of your choice. [click the link for a few charities that accept text donations]
It doesn’t have to be much. It could be as little as five dollars.
Then, come back here and share your experience. If you blog, post about it and I’ll add your link to the Go Without page. If you don’t blog, feel free to email me or send me a tweet and I’ll share with the rest of the readers here.
So, go forth and make awesomeness, people.
[note: I have plans to do something special for every ten bloggers that join up this time around... feel free to leave suggestions.]