Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Help Us, Help Others: The Give It Forward Loan

Internet, we need your help. We've got a small seed of an idea, and we're wondering if you're game to play along. As you probably know by now, we are embarking on our second adoption. Zinashi insists that her baby sister is crying in Ethiopia, and we simply can't argue with that. She may be right. (Though we really hope she's not right about the baby's name being Barbecue.) To that end, we are pulling out all the stops to get this thing going. Because Jarod's job puts us in a much-improved financial situation, we anticipate being able to pay for this adoption out of our own pockets. However, there's a small catch. Because our financial situation is newly improved, there hasn't been much time to fill our own pockets. We considered getting a loan from a bank as we did for some of Zinashi's fees, but in this financial climate, it makes my heart heavy to think of money going into corporate profits instead of to those who could really use a hand. So we've come up with a far better plan, but we'll need your help to pull it off.

What we are asking you for, collectively, is a loan. But instead of paying it back to each individual, we propose that we instead give it forward to worthy charities that you help us choose, and add interest just as if it were a traditional loan. To whatever is given to us to get our adoption fees paid, we will add 10% out of our own pockets when we make our "loan payments" each month. For example, to get our adoption underway, we need to raise $2400 to pay for our home study fee. For whatever portion of that fee we raise through the loan you make to us, each month we will give $200 to the charity chosen by our readers, adding an additional $20 as our interest payment, until the amount loaned to us is paid forward in full. As we are loaned more, our monthly gift will grow, as will our interest payment; we will always add an additional 10% to the gift.

The really big fun will come when we receive things like adoption assistance from Jarod's employer or our tax refund, and can make a big payment on our "loan." When we add our 10% to those larger amounts, we can make a collective big difference for an organization that needs the help. The idea itself came when I realized that the amount an organization who takes in street children needed to buy a van was exactly the amount of this year's adoption tax credit. How amazing would it be to write a check that would immediately change things for the people who are helping those who fall through the cracks? If you would join us in this, we can make big things happen.

So that's it. Help us, help others. Your donation grows by 10% and grows our family in the process.

We are calling this the Give It Forward Loan, and we've started a new page to track it. You can find the link next to our other page links, just below the masthead. On that page, you'll find an itemized list of fees we'll be paying, the amount you have loaned us so far, how much we've paid back, and the charities who have received each month's payment. We will choose four charities each month, and ask our readers to vote to determine which one will receive the payment. We will make our payment each month on the 15th, and will open voting for that month's charity one week earlier, on the 8th. Voting will be conducted in a separate post on our main page. We welcome suggestions for worthy charities who could use a hand, and you can submit those via comments on the Give It Forward page or to our email address, which is linked there as well.

You can donate quickly and securely using the PayPal button on our sidebar. We cannot give tax deductible receipts since we are just regular people and not a 501(c)(3), but what we can do is pledge that we will not claim the tax deductions from the amounts we give as part of the Give It Forward Loan or for any of our charitable giving*. This money will be a gift to the recipient, and no one will receive financial gain from these gifts aside from the charities who receive the donations.

We know we are going out on a limb here, but we believe that we can make this happen, for our next daughter and for all the people who will benefit from the repayment of this loan. We're starting small, with just a PayPal button and a confidence in the goodheartedness of our readers. We can make this small seed grow big. Let's do it.

Click here to get on in there, or if you're ready to donate now, proceed to the PayPal button located conveniently in our sidebar on the left.

*Our modus operandi is to give freely and ignore the receipts, so we'll just be continuing to do what is our usual.


  1. It may be good to mention that Jarod's employer does charitable gift matching, which will double all the donations.

  2. I totally forgot about that, and apparently so did Jarod. Thank you for the reminder!

  3. That is an awesome idea! As soon as the January bills are paid, I'm onboard!

  4. I love, love, love this idea. If unemployment comes through, I will aid the cause. Fingers crossed for both of us!

    Thanks for asking, btw. It can be so hard to reach out, but so many of us want to help in a meaningful way, just don't know how.

    Happy holidays and move!

  5. Fingers definitely crossed, Cora. Thank you for your kind words. Happy holidays to you and your adorable family, too!


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