Making a difference doesn’t take hundreds or thousands of dollars. You can change someones day with a thoughtful gesture or an unexpected $20 surprise. If you don’t believe me you should head over to the Rockstar Community Fund thread and read all of the amazing stories people shared.
An Unexpected Gift
The Rockstar Finance team started with $500, and a few fellow personal finance bloggers (including Mrs AE and I) threw in $100 to make it go even farther. Shortly after that, $20 gift cards were mailed out to community members all over the country, into Canada, and even spanned the ocean to India.
Use your card to give an unexpected gift to someone in your world.
“This can be a friend, family member, co-worker, or even a stranger on the street. Our goal is to show that even a small amount of money can make a huge impact, and the more creative you can get, the better. Use it to help a struggling family, brighten the day of a service worker in a thankless job, delight a child, or bring a tear to the eye of an old friend.”
Our $20 Gift
Mrs. AE and I tossed a few ideas back and fourth over the last week and came up with some good ones (some we will save for round 2,3,4,5…..). But we landed on doing something for our local Fire Department.
After a little research we found out the fire station in our town is staffed 24/7 through the holidays. At that point we knew we made the right choice. People who spend time away from their families to keep the community safe deserve some love. We decided to bring them a meal on Christmas as a thank you.
I emailed the fire department Friday night trying to figure out how many people to plan for and got a call from the Fire Chief on Saturday morning. He thanked us and let us know how many people would be at the station and what time they usually break for lunch.
We planned on having pizza delivered, but quickly realized everything was closed. Take’n Bake Pizzas saved the day and we took 20 minutes on Christmas morning to make the delivery ourselves.
Two Firemen met us at the door and thanked us for bringing them in. We got hit with an ice storm in MN and I’m sure they were busy responding to calls all night.
It felt good, we looked at each other when we got in the car and both smiled. I think we will do this every year moving forward.
How did others spread the Love?
So far every person has done something different with their gift card. A car battery was replaced. Cookies were made and delivered. Anonymous gifts were left. People who sacrifice their time for others were given a token of appreciation. Beers were bought for strangers. Diapers for a new mom.
My favorite story is someone who took it to a new level. Turning a $20 gift card into $330 and giving it to pay down student lunch debt for families in need.
I had a smile on my face the entire time I read through the responses. Head over to read all the stories, lots of creativity and heartfelt gifts. I am amazed. Looking forward to doing more of this in 2017.
For more information on the Rockstar Finance Community Fund – Visit their one pager
Get out and do some good! Happy Holidays!