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5 ways to show kindness without hurting your budget
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Imagine you are out to eat with your friends and you strike up a conversation with the server/waiter. You learn he is working two jobs to enroll in a part-time course in a school. When he gets home, he will have to put some money down for food for his single mom and younger ones.

Your heart goes out to him. He seems brilliant and energetic, yet underneath the smiles you sense a deep longing for things to be different. You would love to help in some way, but you feel like you can't afford to. You imagine how exciting it would be if you had an extra N5, 000 or even N10, 000 a month set aside specifically for times like this.

The question now is, how can you increase your ability to give without hurting your own financial situation? After all, you don't want to do anything financially stupid, like going deep into debt. The answer may lie in building kindness into your budget.

Check out our list of 5 things you can do to give generously without affecting your own budget

1. Set amounts aside for giving in your budget – No matter how small the money might be, write down an amount that you’d like to spend on certain people who are in need and put it into the budget.

2. Donate items from your stash - Do you ever wonder what you might be able to do with all of that free stuff you have received from different owambe parties? You can donate items that you feel others might need, take them to the homeless or motherless babies’ home. Another great idea is to fill a box with old school supplies that your children aren’t using anymore, small toys, toothbrushes, etc. for the children in need in poor areas.

3. Volunteer to serve your community – Your extra little effort to help someone or some organization out can make a world of a difference to them. It's also a free and enriching activity.

4. Be generous with friends and family – You don’t need to spend a tremendous amount of money in order to give the ideal gift, some ingenuity and dedication will suffice. You can use your talents to create gifts or special gestures.

5. Also, you can be generous with your time. In a fast paced world, time may be the most valuable thing you can give to someone. Make time for your friends and family members and truly be present while you are together. Ditch the cell phones and computers and focus on being together.

Plan ahead! Put money aside for helping others no matter how small. It is smart to be frugal where you can and be generous when you can while staying within your budget!