August 13, 2010

School Supply Deals | Finding Ways to Give Back

This post was originally published on July 24, 2009. As you're dusting off your children's backpacks and stuffing them full of all the awesome deals you found over the past several weeks, think about donating some of your extra school supplies. ;-)

Now that July is nearing an end, the back-to-school deals are in full swing. From now until the end of August, major retailers will be offering stockpile prices on different school supplies in their weekly ads (like the ones at CVS and Walgreens this week).

For those of us who have kids in school, these sales are a wonderful way to get those backpacks loaded with goodies for the start of the new school year without breaking the bank. But if you're a frugalista who doesn't have school-aged children (or maybe you're like me and can't resist the thrill of stocking up on FREE after ECB pencils and paper and end up with more than your kids will use), you can help teachers and students by donating those freebie and cheapie extras.

Give Locally

--> Buy extras of common items (crayons, pencils, glue sticks, paper) for your child's classroom.

--> Not sure what your child's teacher may need? Contact your school's principal or your local school district's central office and ask what kind of supplies they need most and where you can deliver them.

--> Want to reach kids in great need? Donate supplies to your local homeless shelter or women's crisis shelter; these charities are always happy to accept items for children.

Give Nationally

--> Visit I Love Schools and learn about how you can donate your extra school supplies to a teacher in need.

--> Don't have extra supplies to donate but want to donate a few bucks (since you saved so much grabbing those deals)? Visit Donors Choose, Adopt a Classroom, or Kids in Need, charities where you can donate money to classrooms in need.

Looking for more charities that might be interested in your school supply donations (or cash donations)? Visit Charity Navigator, a free site dedicated to evaluating and rating charities; it's always smart to do your research before you donate so you can be sure your money/donations are going exactly where you want them to go.

Giving back a little more has been one nice side effect for me from couponing/living more frugally; I love having a well-stocked pantry but I do remind myself that the next big deal is just a few weeks away. I can part ways with some of those goodies I've gotten for pennies and also help someone in need.

Know of a great charity for extra school supplies or just a great charity in general for extra goodies from couponing? Share what you know in a comment below!

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Diane said...

This is a great post! So many of these things are on my list of things to do.