If you happen to work for a larger company, chances are they have a program where they will match employee contributions to charities dollar for dollar. So in other words you could double the amount of money you donate with no extra cost.
It’s one of those things where when you hear about it you think, “Hey, that’s a great idea!” but then it gets filed away and forgotten. More often than not, when a company newsletter comes around reminding you of the program you think about the $20 or $50 you’ve given to charity and how you forgot to take advantage of the free-matching. You probably say to yourself, “I’ll remember for next time!” and then next time comes, and you forget again. I remember that happening a few times when I first started working in the financial services.
So here’s my suggestion: Send an email to your HR person to ask two things.
1) Is there a charitable donation employer-matching program available?
2) Ask if you can get 2 copies of the form. Even if you don’t need one right now.
Then keep the forms at your desk. I know that for me, the sporadic contributions I make to various causes are in the form of $20 here and $20 there, and I think subconsciously I can’t be bothered with finding a form to get that amount matched. THAT’S JUST SILLY! Why do I do that? I know that if the form is already at my desk, I’ll use it for sure.
Many large companies will match their employee’s contributions to their favourite registered charities for up to $1,000. I think that if we all started to actively use these programs we could collectively make quite a big difference!