Helping Others with Your Mouse...
And Without Spending a Dime(!)

Who'd have imagined, back in the day, that we could be helping others with something called a mouse, and that we could do so without spending any money. What better way to follow the wise counsel of Teddy Roosevelt, who suggested that we simply do what we can right where we are and with whatever we have at hand. If that makes sense to you, read on... 

Putting the Mouse to Work

So, if you're at this site, one of the things you likely do have on hand is a mouse. With it, you can help provide food and other assistance to people/animals in need. Plus, if you're clicking only (as opposed to clicking and occasionally purchasing), that assistance won’t cost you a dime. 

What it will cost is whatever time you choose to give...and yes, time is a precious and diminishing commodity for many of us. But another diminishing commodity for far too many is food—as supply chains become increasingly mangled by wars, natural disasters, and the complexities and inequities of post-harvest storage, transport, and distribution.
 

  Clicking Sites at Greater Good

Perhaps you already give money and/or time to groups addressing hunger, shelter, and other pressing issues; if so, the World thanks you. For an "encore," you can click daily at the sites gathered at Greater Good: the Hunger Site, the Animal Rescue Site, The Breast Cancer Site, the Veterans Site, the Alzheimer Site, and the Rain Forest Site, among others. To do so takes little time, yet can pay off wonderfully when thousands of us choose to give that time.  

  Playing the Free-Rice Game

Here's another way to give that also costs nothing. Use your mouse-hand and your head (and heart) to play a game at Free Rice.

The free-rice game questions you in your choice of several areas; for each correct answer, the game “pays” you 10 grains of rice. So, if you answer a mere 30 questions, for example, your winnings total 300 grains. When cooked they look like the rice in the itty bowl just below—one heaping tablespoon, plus slight overage. Guess how I know this... ;-)

Filling that small bowl would take you 7 or 8 days of play at the 30-question level. If you ramp up to 50, 75, or 100 or more questions, you can make an even greater difference to people living in challenging and sometimes heartrending circumstances.

 The Free Rice site even keeps a running tally if you revisit during the day, and you may play as often and as long as you wish.

 You can also set up and/or join a team, if that appeals to you.

To do shelter animals a similar favor, hop on over to freekibble.com, where a single answer (all you’re allowed) to each of three questions earns 10 pieces of kibble whether your answer be correct or false. 

  Chipping in on Micro-Loans

Before you leave, please allow me to make a quick plug for Kiva, an innovative micro-lending program. Although Kiva isn't completely free, in the sense that you do lend money at a certain risk, my own (considerable) experience as a lender suggests that most borrowers fully repay their loans. If you like the idea of giving a boost to a small-scale entrepreneur in the U.S. or a developing country, consider lending a person or enterprise 25 bucks now and then through Kiva. 

And there you are: a few easy and either free or inexpensive ways to help others. But they work best if the rest us pitch in as well. Although none of us can "save the world" on our own, together we can do a lot. So, if you too choose to turn your mouse-hand into a helping-hand, may the Force be with you!

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