4 Ways to Give Back to Your Community in 2022 -- Even if Money Is Tight

Many or all of the products here are from our partners that compensate us. It’s how we make money. But our editorial integrity ensures our experts’ opinions aren’t influenced by compensation. Terms may apply to offers listed on this page.


  • Not everyone has the money to be as charitable as they'd like.
  • You can give back in other ways that don't involve parting with money.

Here's how you can make a positive impact.

A lot of people are starting 2022 in a precarious financial situation. First, those who experienced income loss during the pandemic may not have fully recovered yet. Plus, inflation has been driving the cost of living upward in an extreme way. That's been fueling a financial crunch for workers living paycheck to paycheck without money in savings to fall back on.

If your finances could use a lift, you may have to put the kibosh on extra spending until your circumstances improve. And that could mean scaling back your charitable donations. But that doesn't mean you can't have a positive effect on your community. Here are four ways to give back without having to spend extra money and strain your finances.

1. Start a food drive

Food insecurity remains a big issue on a national level, especially since monthly payments under the boosted Child Tax Credit have been off the table since the start of 2022. A good way to help is to spearhead a food drive. You can partner with a local food bank, organization, or place of worship and put the word out on social media you're collecting grocery items for those in need.

2. Clean up a local park

Parks add a lot of value to communities and can be a haven for children and their stressed-out parents alike. A great way to give back is to round up some friends and do a major park cleanup. That doesn't only mean removing trash. It could mean repainting benches and equipment and repairing walking trails that may have been damaged by winter storms.

3. Be a resource for seniors and residents with mobility challenges

Some people struggle to do things like run errands due to mobility issues or a lack of accessible transportation. If you're willing to volunteer to help those people, you'll be doing a great service to your community. Of course, finding people in need of help may be challenging, but put the word out on your town or neighborhood social media page that you're willing to assist with things like driving to medical appointments and delivering groceries. Chances are, you'll be connected to the right people through word of mouth.

4. Support local businesses

Many local businesses have struggled in the course of the pandemic. But local businesses are good for communities. They help create jobs and keep property values stable. And by supporting local businesses, you can, in turn, support your community. This doesn't mean you have to go out and spend money you don't have at your neighborhood bookstore or coffee shop. Rather, talk up local businesses and encourage those with means to frequent them.

The pandemic has caused a positive shift in a lot of people, and these days, many are in the mindset of wanting to give back. If you feel similarly but are strapped for cash, don't assume being charitable is off the table. There are plenty of things you can do to better your community and have a positive impact.

Alert: highest cash back card we've seen now has 0% intro APR until 2025

If you're using the wrong credit or debit card, it could be costing you serious money. Our experts love this top pick, which features a 0% intro APR for 15 months, an insane cash back rate of up to 5%, and all somehow for no annual fee. 

In fact, this card is so good that our experts even use it personally. Click here to read our full review for free and apply in just 2 minutes. 

Read our free review

Our Research Expert

Related Articles

View All Articles Learn More Link Arrow