A Material Girl’s Guide To Donating.

A few weeks ago, I was considering doing away with traditional Christmas presents this year.

Instead of getting my mother in law another gift  to return, I thought about purchasing a pair of sheep for a needy family in Africa (in her name, of course).

I considered buying my nieces music classes—for underprivileged girls in Honduras.

I even thought about helping my crippled grandmother build a well—for a sub-Saharan village.

But then I remembered. My family likes stuff. The more stuff the better. In fact, we like to try to bury the Christmas tree under stacks of presents. So a small envelope congratulating them on their generous donation? Would go over about as well as a lump of coal inside a Tiffany box.

Enter GiveBack.org.

The brilliant folks behind this site have made it possible to donate to all of your favorite charities, just by doing your normal holiday shopping.

Buying a new 3D TV at Best buy? Click through to the site using GiveBack.org and you’ll get 2% of the purchase price to donate how you please.

Stocking up on Pillow Pets and Playstation games at Toys R Us? Another 2 percent gets plunked right back in your foundation.

Buttering up your child’s teacher with chocolates from Godiva? Get 4 percent to give away.

Opting out of the holidays altogether by booking a trip to the Caribbean using Expedia? Score another 1 percent to buy those goats, music classes and even a donkey or two.

GiveBack.org makes even the most disgusting display of rampant consumerism an exercise in charitable giving. And that? Is a concept I can get behind.

Signing up couldn’t be easier. All you need is an email address (or a facebook account). Then all you have to do is fill up your foundation with your favorite charities and start shopping. They’ll even give you five bucks to get your philanthropic efforts started.

Oh, and by the way? By “your favorite charities,” I really do mean all your favorite charities. I’ve filled my foundation with organizations ranging from behemoths like the American Cancer Society and World Vision to  itty bitty local ventures like the Bloomington Playwright’s Project and my local animal shelter.

So what are you waiting for? Go give it a whirl. You’ve got nothing to lose—and a whole lot to give.

DISCLAIMER: I found out about this organization through the One2One Network, and by writing about it, I’m  registered to win a Blissdom pass. But honestly? I think this is an absolutely fantastic idea, and I’d sing their praises regardless.

6 Comments on A Material Girl’s Guide To Donating.

  1. Rebecca
    November 30, 2010 at 11:16 am (5 years ago)

    Tis the time of year to speak of charities. Sounds like a good way to give. Just shop and a percentage goes to the charity of your choice. I was just ranting about a local charity on my blog a couple of days ago. I don’t agree with what a certain charity does with some of it’s money. I shouldn’t complain………….I’m a bad person.

    Off to see if I can create a little good…….click!

    • Amber
      November 30, 2010 at 3:00 pm (5 years ago)

      Some charities do seem to take liberties with their non-profit status. Hope you find some better ones!

  2. Ashleigh
    November 30, 2010 at 12:33 pm (5 years ago)

    Does this include donations to the human fund?

    • Amber
      November 30, 2010 at 2:59 pm (5 years ago)

      Nope. But I’ll bet there’s a Klingon fund. There might even be a toilet beautifying fund.

  3. Erin
    November 30, 2010 at 1:25 pm (5 years ago)

    Wonderful – wonderful – wonderful stuff!!! I love this and quite frankly – I LOVE the ideas at the top too –

    my family loves “stuff” too but I’d like to teach my children to learn to love the feeling of giving – I’m working on all sorts of ways…this one just went to the top:) LOVE THIS!

    • Amber
      November 30, 2010 at 2:59 pm (5 years ago)

      Giving is a good lesson to teach…especially if it doesn’t involve having to give one of your presents away. I never understood that strategy…


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