Chances are, you have a lot of spare change lying around—whether wedged between cushions or in a piggy bank. Have you thought about donating it to a good cause? Penny charities are an often-overlooked option. There's no rule saying you need to make a celeb-sized contribution every time you fund your favorite cause. Instead, you can donate your change to make a real "change."
Pinching Pennies at Home
Your debit or credit card gets a workout daily. So where does that leave the couch cushion change you used to collect periodically? If the growing use of plastic and electronic payments has left you change-free, you can start deliberately collecting change at home.
Make a point to start a penny collection with a piggy bank. Don't worry about buying a plastic pig. Reuse an old coffee can, cutting a slit in the lid. Your kids can decorate the can by pasting collage paper onto it. Use markers or pens to add the charity's name and a brief blurb about what your donation will go toward.
Collecting Change in Your Community
Home isn't the only place to collect pennies for your chosen charity. Start a change drive at your child's school, community center, or at work. Up the fun factor by holding a contest or dividing days into different denominations—collecting pennies on Monday, nickels on Tuesdays, and so on.
After the change drive is over, ask everyone who donated to guess the grand total. Have a big reveal, announcing the dollar amount and the awesome estimator winner!
Finding a Penny Charity
Which charities accept penny or loose change donations? For the most part, charities will accept any type of monetary donation. While the organization might prefer one check or a credit card donation, they aren't going to turn down your money or efforts. Some organizations specifically solicit pennies or loose change. Searching online for penny charities will show you many options to pick from.
Choose a charity that is meaningful to you and your family. Support a cause that's close to home, such as a local food pantry, animal shelter, or community improvement project. If you don't have a local group to support, go national or even global. Look for charities that support causes close to your heart or that your family relates to.
Rounding Up Purchases
If you don't have the time or energy to collect physical change, many charities will allow you to donate spare change via debit or credit card purchases. These donations work through sites and apps that round up your card-based purchases and donate the remainder. In other words, if you buy a $2.92 latte, they'll charge you $3.00 and donate $0.08 to your chosen charity.
Making change with spare change is easier than you think. Share pics of your family's collection efforts with us on Instagram by tagging @toms_of_maine!
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Why It's Good
Loose change shouldn't stay stuffed under couch cushions when it could go toward something meaningful. Get your whole family involved in this small act of kindness. Collect what you can, and donate to a cause that means something to you!