Just this very minute, I took something that was half-done on my Life List and completed it. That feels good.
Number 95. Contribute annually to NPR and Planned Parenthood. These are both organizations that matter to me. They are not the only organizations that I contribute to, but they are two that I found I was giving to some years and not others. I wanted to commit to send something, no matter how small the amount, every year, to each of them. In the last year or so, KQED introduced a monthly contribution plan among their membership options and I was quick to jump on board. I don't even feel the impact of the monthly $5, but I do feel proud about honoring a commitment I made to myself.
Still, I hadn't gotten it together on the Planned Parenthood front. Willy-nilly is not a great philanthropic strategy, but it seemed to be the one I was sticking to. Just now, it occurred to me to check if they had a similar monthly option. Of course, they do. Well, sheesh. Why didn't you just say so instead of sending me so many darn solicitation letters? Done.
Is it a great deal of money? No. But I don't have a great deal of money, so that's fair enough. Besides, this works out to slightly more than I would be giving if I wrote a check once a year and it's painless to spread it over twelve months. Besides, I know from my long experience in nonprofits, when they say any amount makes a difference, they mean it. If you're faltering, know that giving something truly is better than giving nothing--assuming, of course, you have anything available to give.
I really recommend the automatic monthly contribution; if only doing the right thing were always so easy. If you have greater financial capacity, by all means, dole out larger monthly allotments, but let's all stand up for things we care about, shall we? Maybe we could save the world, five bucks at a time. It's worth a shot, right?