Every month, receive financial wellness tips and participate in a financial challenge.
Did you participate in the October Money 2020 Challenge?
November: Budget for Giving
This month’s challenge is to budget charitable giving for the holidays. Charitable giving tends to increase around the holiday season, and this year it’s more important than ever to help others. It’s important to budget for charitable giving even if you aren’t rich (and most of us aren’t.)
Budgeting for Giving
A good rule of thumb is to set aside 10% of your income for giving each month. Some financial advisors recommend the 50/30/20 rule: give 50% of your allotted donation amount to organizations that support causes you are passionate about; give 30% to organizations to which you have a loyalty or obligation (like alumni associations or religious groups) and 20% to unplanned requests or individuals who need help. It’s important to plan and budget for charitable donations just as you would any other expense.
How to Give
You probably already know which causes you like to support. However, current events such as natural disasters or the COVID-19 pandemic can often change how we prioritize our giving.
- Charity Navigator is a website that examines non-profit financial documents to developed a numbers-based rating system for these organizations. Their scores focus mostly on financial transparency.
- GiveWell is another website that researches charities based on the amount of impact that they have. They research and highlight charities that will improve the lives of the most people.
- GiveDirectly is an organization that gives cash directly to people in poverty. Their research shows that cash transfers are the most effective way to help people in poverty.
- GoFundMe is a popular website where people can raise money for various needs. You can browse fundraisers and even search by location if you want to help someone locally.
- Mutual aid has also become more important during the COVID-19 pandemic. You can see which of your neighbors need help by joining the Gainesville COVID-19 Mutual Aid Facebook group, or searching to see if a group exists for your area.
- As it gets colder, our unhoused neighbors also need extra help. Giving money or supplies directly to people and being prepared with supplies in your car can go a long way.
Can’t Give Financially?
Donating time or services can be just as impactful as a financial donation, especially if you’re volunteering on a regular basis. Choose an organization that you’re passionate about and find a way to help that you actually enjoy. Volunteering regularly is a great way to meet new people who care about the same things as you and increase your sense of purpose in your day-to-day life.
Our goal isn’t to drain our bank accounts giving to charity during the holidays. Our goal is to intentionally find ways to make giving a part of our monthly budgets – even if it means simply giving our time.
For UF Employees: Financial Literacy & Retirement Education (FLARE)
For UF Health Employees: Retirement Information
For Florida residents: Free 1-on-1 financial counseling through IFAS