Given the giving card snafu with January/Feb cards, we've gotten a little behind on this whole thing. However, if you remember the first month, we decided to match the gift card and give $40 each month.
It really has been a challenge to figure out how to do this and do it meaningfully. $40 isn't much in the grand scheme of things. I thought about going and handing it to one of the many homeless folks around here, but I always worry about what that money will be spent on. Besides, I like for these things to be more personal. But it was taking forever. I kept looking around for the right way to do it.
Last week, I looked on Facebook and saw that my childhood best friend had been laid off from his job at Lowe's Home Improvement. He and his wife have three kids in elementary and middle school. They also live in a town in NC where jobs are pretty scarce. When I messaged him on facebook, he was not too hopeful about finding another job in that town, but he doesn't want to uproot his family from their home.
I put the card and the money in a letter, explaining where the money came from and why. Again, $40 isn't going to put much of a dent in a mortgage payment, but we decided to send that card and money to his family anyway. As I wrote in my letter to him, I know it isn't much, but luxuries are going to be hard to come by for him for a while, so maybe that'll help. Maybe he could use that money on his kids.
I don't know how he's going to react to this. He was always a proud guy who didn't like the idea of being the beneficiary of charity. I told him in the letter that if he doesn't like it, he can choose to spend it some other way. He's always been heavily involved in his church, and I suggested that he could give it to them if he felt so inclined.
Overall, I feel like this was a really hard assignment, but worthwhile. Honestly, I hope my friend will use the money for his kids, and I suspect he will.
Unfortunately, there aren't any pictures of this other than a picture I took of the card, the envelope, and a $20 bill. That's not real exciting, so I think I'll just stop with the narrative.