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A Story Of Kindness

 

Not really a little act of kindness, but I feel I should share.

I came from a very wealthy, Jewish family. I used to get a lot of money for Channukah and Pesach, and various other Jewish holidays (I don’t follow those customs anymore). Usually around $300-400 over the course of a year, in cash, starting when I was about 7. Now mind you, this money was coming from my grandparents, not my parents. My parents would hold onto the money that my grandparents gave me and put it in my wallet when we got home.

By the time I was about 13 years old, I had about $4,500 dollars in cash in my wallet. This money was collected mainly through chores and work around the house. My father never spoiled me, and usually made me work for my money, depending on the occasion. I would paint the walls sometimes or clean windows, etc. From my Bar Mitzvah, I had $27,000 in the bank.

At around that time, my father was teaching me how to become financially responsible. He would teach me about check books, jobs, how to invest money, etc.

Around a year later, when I was 14 years old, I decided I wanted to keep all my money in the bank for safe keeping (this was around Christmas time and Chanukkah time. I believe December 15th-20th). My father and I walked to the bank together, with all my cash..

I saw a homeless man, about 40 years old with a seven year old child. They looked emaciated. I was heartbroken. I thought about what my life would have been like if I was that child. All of these thoughts were running through my head; terrible thoughts. The father was wearing a brown coat with a large tear in the seams of the armpit. The boys face was filthy and he looked cut up near the forehead. They were wearing trashy pants, and were on cardboard. Unshaven, unkempt, and discombobulated. They had a shopping cart full of bottles and cans. I just stared, and stared, and stared. My father was tugging at my arm, trying to pull me along. I’ve seen homeless men before, but this father and son, they just looked so… so innocent. The father didn’t look like those old homeless guys you see on the street. They weren’t begging for money at all, just sitting there under their rag of a blanket, and the child with his oversized jacket, trying to sleep on his fathers arm. They looked desperate, but I don’t think the father wanted to give up his pride by begging for money in the streets. So that’s where they lived, getting by day by day.

The father was cradling his son, unsure of what would happen next in their life. He looked like he really cared. The boy looked so upset, more than any other child I’ve ever seen in my life. Their life was in ruins, it seemed.

The boys father, teary eyed and full of despair, stared straight at me, and I stared back. His eyes slowly dropped to the floor, and back to his son, petting his hair to comfort him. I just felt so terrible. To this day, I’m unsure whether the homeless man was embarrassed or just sad.

I felt like doing something. I reached into my pocket, and took out my wallet. I walked over to him and handed this man whom I have never met in my life, my life’s savings of $4,500 dollars. He just looked at me.. unsure of what to say. He opened his mouth but no words came out. He looked into the wallet, and saw 7 $100 bills at first glance.

Words can not describe the happiness on this mans face. He started crying, literally. Tears rolling down his face. This homeless man.. he leaps up, and runs over to me, and hugs me, then my father. The homeless man was thanking my father for raising me so well, and being such a wonderful role model.

The boy was sitting there still, just staring at us without emotion. Again, I’m not sure if he understood what was going on.

He was so happy, and I knew I changed this mans life completely, maybe even saved it. He asked me what my name was, and I told him. He just repeated my name twice under his breath in a way to try and memorize it. He asked me where I lived, and I just looked at my father, unsure of what to say. He was just standing there, mouth agape. But he composed himself and shook his head slightly, meaning no. So I told the homeless man, “don’t worry about it, just use the money wisely.”

It felt weird giving away all my money, and it was difficult, but now that I’m all grown up, I finally understand that it was worth every. single. penny.

Please share your thoughts in the comments section. 

Connect… Give… Grow… Community

It’s a novel concept, doing something that not only benefits you but also benefits others around you.  You may have heard of it as a ‘win-win situation’ – designed to benefit all participants.  People have heard about it, but not many of us have seen it in practice.  It’s more like some unachievable goal in a distant far off land, it’s possible, but takes too much effort.  Often times the mindset is something like this: for everyone to benefit – I’ll need to benefit first and then I’ll help everyone, which can results in a perpetual ‘me’ state.

SoRewarding helps you, your business, or your organization to make a positive and long-lasting impact in your neighborhood.  For this blog entry, let’s elaborate on how Businesses can use SoRewarding.

Connecting

For businesses, the goal is to make connections with people.  As a business, you make connections with a positive, kind and generous audience by creating a page on SoRewarding.com.  Individuals, fellow businesses and Nonprofits will see your business page on SoRewarding.  You’ll want to make sure your information is complete (links to your website, FB, etc.) so that users are able to explore who you are and make that initial connection.

Giving

To give… is easier said than done.  How can my business give?  I’m sure it’s something that every successful business owner has put some thought into.  After all, we’re here because of the loyal support of our friends, family and community… It’s only natural to want to give-back.

How about offering your product or service at less than the normal rate?  This rewards your current customers and attracts new ones to try your business.  How about giving a percentage of the sales to a local non-profit?  … ready for a Matrix moment? 

What if I told you that you could do both, through SoRewarding.com and… it’s easy.  It doesn’t take more than a couple minutes if you have your business page set up.  As to not detract from this blog entry, you can learn more about publishing discounts, here

Growth

I’ve connected with a new audience.  I’ve published an offer that rewards my customers and that also gives to local Nonprofits.  My question is this, has this really helped the growth of my business? 

Well, let’s look at the numbers.  In 2011, 65% of households donated to charity.2 As a household that donates to charity, you should assume that that same household will also be more inclined to support businesses who donate to charity versus those who don’t.  A study conducted by Cone Inc. in 2010 found that 90% of consumers (about 278 million people) want to know what cause your business supports. A whopping 79% of consumers would switch to a brand associated with a good cause and 83% wish more of the products and services they purchase and retailers they use would support causes.3

Community

If you’ve followed along up until this point, I hope you’re able to paint a picture of how everyone in a community benefits from socially responsible businesses.  Focusing on philanthropic work as a local business has the added benefit of being able to see the people you are helping too.  So now that you’ve been given the information and the tools… get to giving! I invite you to use www.SoRewarding.com for an easy-to-use site that connects with kindness.

 

  1.               http://www.charitynavigator.org/index.cfm?bay=content.view&cpid=42
  2.               http://www.nptrust.org/philanthropic-resources/charitable-giving-statistics
  3.               http://smallbusiness.foxbusiness.com/marketing-sales/2012/01/31/philanthropy-  and-small-business-win-win-situation/

Free Webinar on April 18! 11 Steps to Launching a Successful Social Media Strategy for Your Nonprofit

For our Nonprofit friends who follow our blog, you may find that this FREE webinar is useful in getting your Social Media Strategy tightened up.

Nonprofit Tech 2.0 Blog :: A Social Media Guide for Nonprofits

12StepsGraphicDate: Tuesday, October 29, 2013
Time: 1pm-2:30 EDT
Cost: $50 or Webinar Special
How to Register: Sign up!
Presented By: Heather Mansfield
View: All Webinars for Nonprofits

This webinar demonstrates how nonprofits can implement a successful social media strategy in twelve steps. Topics include understanding how much time social and mobile media requires, how to track return on investment (ROI), and how to craft a social media policy for your nonprofit. Attendees will also learn the importance of integrating all their communications channels to maximize awareness of their cause and online donations, as well as gain a realistic understanding of how much financial resources are required to be successful on the Social Web.

Related Links:
On-Demand: Social Media for Social Good: A How-To Webinar Series for Nonprofits

Social Media for Social Good: A How-To Guide for Nonprofits
11 Obvious Signs Your Nonprofit Needs Social Media Training

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The Best $7.50 I have ever spent… What’s the best money you have ever spent?

“So, I walked into a Safeway today to find some Greek God yogurt, the honey variety and I stopped at the deli. A lady was waiting there. She looked to be an impoverished little elderly black woman (I am not being classist, or ageist or sexist or racist here, I just like to visually paint pictures) anyway, she said she had been waiting for 45 minutes and no one would wait on her. When they finally did, she asked the price of an egg roll and the fried wontons. It was evident she didn’t have much. Finally in frustration, she said, “Forget it,” and started to leave. That just felt so wrong. I called out, “Stop, stop, you can’t leave, come back here. Pick your dinner out. I’ll buy it.” It came to a mere $7.50 or so. The thought of someone walking home hungry, feeling broke and mistreated just felt so wrong. I told her that I had just sold a book and the meal was no big deal. She asked about the book and I told her about my friend, Darryl’s cancer and how it was important to get it done to honor what a gift he is to me and how much I love him. She said that her husband had cancer. We walked out and I grabbed her a copy of the book and signed it for her. She said she had a book she was working on. She hugged me and said, “I love you.” For a mere $7.50 I got an “I love you,” from a stranger. Best $7.50 I have spent in a long time.”

This is a shared story that can help Spread Kindness, please comment about the best money you’ve spent or share this story.

SoRewarding benefits Metro Volunteers

Had to share this wonderful blog entry from our friends at metro Volunteers.  Here it is :  SoRewarding benefits Metro Volunteers.

 

Check out their website:  http://www.metrovolunteers.org/

 

How to give-back this Week: Pub night fo

How to give-back this Week: Pub night for the Pups! For only $20 you receive two drinks, your choice of appetizers and you’re supporting a fantastic organization – The Rocky Mountain Lab Rescue! Everyone is welcome to this party, more information at the link. http://ow.ly/hRi0f

Morgan Adams Foundation & Thrifty Shades of Cray

Thrifty Shades of Cray, not to be confused with Fifty Shades of Grey is coming up this Saturday!  Instead of bringing your book, throw on your thriftiest outfit and head downtown to The Ginn Mill… where 30% of all sales between 8-11PM will be donated to The Morgan Adams Foundation. That’s huge..!!

Companies like Smashburger, Popchips and Demetrio Tequila have hopped onboard and teamed-up with SoRewarding and Gin Mill to put this night over the top!  You can expect some pretty snazzy giveaways… BUT better than that, you can also expect some awesome outfits, there’ll even be a rack of clothing for those of you who don’t have anything thrifty enough for such an occasion.  Have some fun, spread kindness and enjoy yo’self!

This event is completely free.  More info, directions and RSVP: here.

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