17 Ways to Give Back Without Breaking the Bank

Who says giving back has to be in large sums of cash or weeks worth of time?

I know you (like me) don’t always have the funds, the resources or the time to give on a monthly basis. But that doesn’t mean we can’t give back.

Last week, my son and I created a list of ways we can give back now. Easy, simple things that don’t take up a lot of time or money.


Below you will find 17 of our favorites.


  1. Start a community garden.
  2. Give someone the gift of your time who you know can’t afford it.
  3. Run or walk for a cause.
  4. Add money to an expired meter.
  5. Foster a pet.
  6. Give an anonymous donation to a friend or family member in need.
  7. Pick up trash around your neighborhood.
  8. Start a recycling program.
  9. Become an organ donor.
  10. Mow your neighbor’s lawn.
  11. Pay for someone behind you at the (toll booth, coffee shop, mini mart, etc.).
  12. Volunteer at an elder care facility.
  13. Donate your blood.
  14. Run a fundraiser for your favorite charity.
  15. Give extra food to a local food pantry or food bank.
  16. Buy lunch for a homeless person.
  17. Gift a friend who is having a bad time of it lately a gift card to their local grocery store.

It doesn’t take much.

Giving back starts with one person having a big heart.

The hope is there will a trickle effect. And even if there isn’t, touching lives one person at a time is better than not touching a life at all.


What other ways can you give back? What can you add to this list? How do you currently give back?

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