Giving Small

       Don't Have a Cow!¬†¬†Give a Cow to Someone Who Needs It

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Wednesday, February 25, 2009

* Coupons, Cows, Food Banks and Shelters

Cow, Coupons, Donations

Items bought for almost free using coupons to donate to shelter, food bank, etc.

Couponing 101

My undercover couponing adventure has turned me into a believer in coupons. I always liked the odd coupon but I have been amazed at the savings. In 2 months, I have saved $140 with coupons and bonus point deals. And I'm not good at it yet.

And yes, this is based on buying what I would normally buy. The biggest pitfalls of couponing is that you start buying stuff you don't need or use.

Couponing for the Cow

Trading coupons is not going quite so well as saving on groceries. We have raised $43.30 with coupons. Some of the coupon total is from Aeroplan codes -- the 10 pt and 25 pt on Tropicana OJ and Quaker cereals and granola bars. Please send me those 12 digit pins if you're not using them. The pin codes under coke and sprite bottle caps are also hot items to trade for the cow.

Giving Small with Coupons

What I've discovered is that lots of couponers stock up on things that they can buy with coupons for free, or near free, to donate for shelters, food bank, animal rescue groups, nursing homes, etc. I checked with the Saskatoon Food Bank and they take food and non-food items.

Non-food are placed in the Clothing Depot in the Grass Center. So shampoo, toothpaste, razors, soap, household cleaners, pet food, toilet paper, diapers, baby oil, etc. The clothing depot has a $2 charge per bag and people can take up to 2 items from the shelf of non-food items. The Street Cat folks can use paper towels I know the community gardening folks are always looking for seeds for planting.
I plan to phone the shelters next to see what they take and need. Do you know any groups who need things? Let me know.

Test Run - Donating Items Bought with Coupons

I decided to test this out on a small scale. For the past 2 weeks I collected items that I could pick up easily. Keep in mind, that I hadn't really been collecting coupons with this in mind.

The photo at the top of this post shows items collected. All of them cost about $10. To buy them without coupons and watching for sales/clearances would be about $70.

You'll notice there's no food -- it's pretty tough to get food items for a few cents but there are great deals to be had for 50 cents to a dollar per item. That's where a little seed money is needed.

For example, I spoke to the manager at the Rexall drugstore and they said they'd call me when they're marking cereals down to $1 a box. I think it would be great to buy up a case if that happens.

Feedback Needed

So here's what I'd like everyone to give feedback on. Should we designate up to $50 per month as seed money from the bottles/cans/Kijiji sales etc. to go towards donations for shelters and food bank items?

I'll scout good deals and use coupons where I can and try to make up a big box.

Please vote, email me or talk to me - what do you think? Have a better idea - suggest away.

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