You wouldn’t believe the crazy amazing stories of people who’ve benefited from coupons. Below are accounts of three mothers who have not only made couponing a lifestyle, but how they’ve managed to help the less fortunate.
Angelique, Mom of 3
Considering today’s growing expenses, you’ll wonder how a family of five would survive. For Angelique, her husband and her brood of two girls and one boy, it’s more than possible. She considers couponing a blessing because even if she shops at night (where items are mostly cleared off), she still gets the best items. Her husband even says that “she doesn’t love to pay full price for anything!” –a statement most men will probably be envious of. She also says she’s got a full wardrobe that she “didn’t pay a single penny for.”
In this video, you’ll see her in one of her extreme coupon-use sprees. The father pushes the cart and the kids are happy with their shopping adventure at the store. True enough, Angelique stops by the candy section and dumps their already-full cart with 600 pieces of candy—all for free. She asks her kids if they can eat all the candy and one of her daughters answer no, because they can’t. Angelique tells them that the rest of the candy will definitely go to their church for the upcoming Easter holiday.
Angelique’s basement is also loaded with goods—food, toiletries, clothes, toys, and games. She knows how much of her life is worry-free because of couponing; that’s why she doesn’t forget to give back when she can.
Michelle Reis from Tray, Mom of 3
After reading Angelique’s story, will you still be surprised if we told you of another family of 5 who survives with just $150 a month? They manage to save over $45,000 a year! Unbelievable? Yes. True? Definitely!
She considers herself a full-time mom even though she has a full-time day job. When does she squeeze in the time to coupon? She does it every day on the long train ride to work, unmindful of the curious stares of the people around her.
What’s Michelle’s advice? “You just gotta find the deals.” To be specific, drug stores are the best places to use coupons. There was even a time when the store owed her a whopping $215 after couponing! There’s a catch though. Because when that happens, Michelle doesn’t pocket the money, but gives them to local charities instead. It’s no wonder Michelle still finds the time to teach couponing classes.
Heather Bonner from Georgia
Now, Heather is also a couponing master mom, but she does more than donate her “extras” to charity. She started Clipping for a Cause, a non-profit organization composed of 6-10 women who regularly coupon in the basement of First United Methodist Church of Lawrenceville. Their headquarters is where they meet to organize and clip (and chat), and to search and buy items for a very, very cheap cost. They only purchase items that are almost, or entirely, free. You can only imagine what this group of women is able to accomplish during its Wednesday meetings.
For example, Heather has 195 pre-ordered items (from food to feminine wash to band-aids) in their local store, and she pays for the whole thing with just $65. Everything goes to their local charities. This has been going on for four years—and it’s still alive and kicking because the members are dedicated to doing their own tasks. It’s not a one-woman team. One does the shopping, one delivers the goods to food banks and shelters, one makes the list of coupons they’ll fix, and one looks for people in need. It’s no surprise that they’ve donated nearly 20,000 items since 2010, and only spent a total of $1,800!
As you can see, these moms are simply superb. They’ve found the perfect way to sustain their own family’s needs, and to help other people in the process. Truly, this is a great way to use couponing as a means of philanthropy. Cheers to these three awesome moms for being money-savvy and life-savers wherever they are!
About the Author
Jep Barroga is a freelance writer and blogger for MoneyHero, a Hong Kong based personal finance blog that provides unbiased information on medical insurance and credit card plans.