Debt Free and GivingTuesday, October 30th, 2007
Over the weekend, wealthy_1 posted a comment on my If I Were Debt Free meme post asking
What about giving? Wouldn’t you give a percentage to your favorite charity?
And that had me thinking of just how to respond. I asked him for a few days to form my thoughts into a coherent post, and this is what I have come up with.
First of all, I am not under a religious mandate to give a certain percentage, nor even to give at all. For the record I am not Christian. With that out of the way, I will say that I do give now.
My favorite charity is the Red Cross Bloodmobile which hits campus about every other month, which is the recommended time between blood donations. Usually I will pass out flyers until the last 45 minutes of the blood drive when I finally submit to the needle in spite of my mild phobia for needles and a penchant for passing out. I am Type A Positive, so the “vampires” love me for my blood as well as my running around campus for 1-3 hours trying to get people to join me in rolling up a sleeve.
For the past few years I have also given small donations to the local firefighter’s disabilty support organization and also to a police essay scholarship contest, both once a year donations. No, it’s not much at all, but those are both things I feel are worthwhile. And I am not yet debt-free.
Once I do become debt free AND graduate from pharmacy school, it is my intention to set up not just one but TWO scholarships: one for the four year school I am currently attending - Austin Peay State University - and one for the pharmacy school I will attend, which I have not yet selected. These won’t be general scholarships either…they will be specifically for non-traditional students like myself, and will be for pre-pharmacy majors and first year pharmacy students with preference given to veterans. These scholarships are perhaps the most important to me.
I didn’t mention this plan in my original post, because right now that is much farther out than being debt free is! It seems like a faint, distant dream at this point, especially with my chances of going to pharmacy school next year beginning to look shaky because of my organic chem grade as well as the student loan/lack of scholarships angle. Also, it is much easier to talk about things that really aren’t as important than to talk about things that are deeply important on a very personal level.
Finally, it honestly didn’t occur to me to mention giving in the original post because I am giving right now! I don’t need to be debt free before I start giving, although I imagine the amounts I give in regards to actual money will increase over time as we do shed the debt we have remaining. I just don’t have a set percentage or amount in mind, because I tend to give as I feel it will do good and is right for me at that time. Or, as my Christian friends would phrase it, “as the spirit moves me.” Hope this answers your question, wealthy_1