Best Argument for Extreme Couponing - Evolved Mommy
Over the last year or so I’ve noticed a sharp increase in the number of my personal friends who use coupons. These are mostly stay at home moms who are very involved in the family finances and tend toward frugality. With the appearance of the show “Extreme Couponing” on TLC I’m thinking these mamas are not an isolated group.
There are others and they appear to be cuh-rayz-eeeeee!
As fanatical as some of these ladies seem you have to admit their commitment is fascinating. Now, my professional opinion (keep in mind I’m no professional anything at the moment, much less any kind of counselor) is that there is a fair amount of compulsion and hoarding on display here.
Not that I judge. (glass house)
It’s just that shelves and shelves of ketchup, toothbrushes and body wash seem excessive.
And can you ever really use 1300 things of floss? Really?
Last week I was at a dinner with a guest speaker who gave me a fantastic idea for such floss surpluses.
Here’s the deal: organizations such as the Arkansas Rice Depot, hypothetically (or not so hypothetically), put together disaster kits.
Types of Disaster Kits:
- Flood buckets
- Children’s disaster relief kits (I personally love this one)
- Disaster kits
- Emergency meal kits
- Layette kits (love this one, too)
- School kits
“If you give food to the hungry and satisfy those who are in need, the darkness around you will turn to the brightness of noon.” – Isaiah 58:10
Maybe you aren’t an “extreme” couponer, but you have some extra toiletries laying around the house.
You might think, “What’s the point of taking time to gather these things together. I don’t really have enough to justify the effort.” Here’s why:
shared by Laura Rhea, CEO of Arkansas Rice Depot
As I walked along the seashore
a young boy greeted me
He was tossing stranded starfish
back into the deep blue sea.
I said “tell me why you bother,
why you waste your time this way,
There’s a million stranded starfish
you can’t save them all today.”
He said, “It matters to this one
it deserves a chance to grow,
It matters to this one
I can’t save them all I know.
But it matters to this one,
so I’ll return it to the sea.
It matters to this one
and it matters to me.”
Each kid matters, whether affected by disaster or hunger. These kits make a difference.
How the Disaster Kits have been used most recently:
- During the tornados and floods during the Spring of 2011, a total of 1,916 Personal Care Kits where distributed to families and individuals across Arkansas.
- Since April 25th, Arkansas Rice Depot has distributed 408 Children’s Disaster Kits, 232 School Kits, and 1025 Cleaning buckets to children, families, and individuals across Arkansas who were victims of the tornadoes, power outages and flooding.
This has been a crazy spring. Supplies are running low. If you have a surplus, whether from couponing or not, it matters. The Arkansas Rice Depot picks up donations at various locations all across the state. Just check their website. Below I’ve posted a screen shot of the page from Arkansas Rice Depot that lists what to include in each of the various kits (click the image to go to the actual page). You just get a group of friends together or do it on your own, assemble the kits and check the website to find out where and when to drop the kits off in your area.
This is a great project for:
- Sunday school classes (adults or children)
- Community groups
- Work groups
- Bunko groups
The point is, this is easy and if you’re a couponer it might just be free.
If you aren’t in Arkansas there are organizations doing similar kits in 40 other states (all inspired by the Arkansas Rice Depot, I might add). I would suggest googling your state name with “disaster kit.”