I think it is incredibly important to give back to your community in one form or another. Not everyone is cut out for the peace corps but it's not that hard to lend a neighbour a hand when they need it. In fact, some times the little things have a huge impact. As well, money isn't the great fixer of problems people would like it to be. As well, giving a few dollars does not absolve your sins or mean you have done your part to make this a better world. Sometimes, spending the time and effort to create change is far more important.
I have never had a ton of money that I could afford to give away but I have always tried to help. I have planted and weeded neighbours gardens, taken care of peoples pets when they were away, helped plant daycare gardens, and taught kids about growing food among other things. I have spent time as a community activist, spoken to city council about things I believed would have a negative impact on kids and families in my neighbourhood. I am also a volunteer an a number of neighbourhood committees as well as a volunteer director for RayCam Community Centre.
On a professional level I have done a great deal of pro-bono work over the years. This included a rebranding and full advertising campaign for the Variety Club as well as a legacy gift for contributors to A Gala Unplugged for the BC Cancer Foundation. This was especially important to me since my grandmother, grand father and mother all died of cancer. Currently my husband is fighting cancer too.
My current probono client is the Lower Mainland Christmas Bureau. I rebranded them about two years ago and continue to help them with their website. But they have been great at reciprocation, and have helped me to keep the Truck Farm on the road over the past year with curb-side fix-ups (like replacing my power stearing belt).