first donations of the year

I had a goal this year to donate whatever leftover money I had after expenses and savings to charity. It’s important to stay grounded, sacrifice some of your meal to the gods every month, etc.. I think it’s immoral for folks who are able to invest significant amounts of money to not donate.

That hasn’t worked out so cleanly because since I got a bonus this month, I have extra extra money, and I don’t feel comfortable donating such a large amount. I also occasionally have a few hundred come in from various freelance opportunities.

My income doesn’t vary much, but it varies enough to make donating leftover money weird.

I’ve decided to stick with a goal of donating a fixed amount each month instead.

The two charities I’ve decided to donate to this year are both very close to my heart: RAINN and Sightsavers. Although, I’m also considering switching my focus to Sankara Eye Foundation since it’s an extremely Indian-American organization.

My favorite website for finding places to donate to is ImpactMatters. It’s all well and good for GiveWell to tell me that malaria prevention is the best use of my money. That doesn’t stop the fact that I care about certain things more.

ImpactMatters has a great calculator that tells you your direct impact based on how much money you donated. It also has lists for your local area.

I care a lot about sexual violence domestically & health related to India, so that’s where my money is going.

According to ImpactMatters, my donation of $300 saved 6 people from blindness. I can feel that in my bones and it incentivizes me to donate more.

It doesn’t cover all topics, though. It doesn’t have a category for domestic violence victims, or women-focused, so I do have to look elsewhere.

I also give some money via Kiva, but I’m not sure something so capitalist is actually a good use of my money. It’s nice that I can put in $100 and have it cycle around forever, though.