ALS Awareness month is almost here, and organizations are preparing their messaging to contribute to the conversation and raise visibility. Through his years of participating in the fight against ALS, Kevin Canterbury has learned that there are a variety of ways that individuals can give back. Here, Kevin includes a short list of methods that he believes to be the most effective ways to support ALS charities.
Find Ways to Donate
One of the biggest barriers to giving back is that people may not be up to speed on simple, yet effective ways to do so. While it may seem overly simple, Kevin Canterbury of Arizona maintains that one of the easiest ways to give back in the fight against ALS is by donating money directly to charitable organizations. There are several ways to donate while maximizing your donation, Canterbury notes. For example, some companies offer an employer gift match when you pledge a donation to ALS charities. This match effectively doubles your donation and, in some cases, brings additional recognition to charity that may lead to even more pledges.
The ALS Association upholds that there are other ways to give that benefit ALS patients as well. Individuals that are interested can join the fight by actions such as creating a fundraising campaign or donating a used vehicle. Some ways to donate, according to Kevin Canterbury of Arizona, do not require that the individual changes much about their routine to give back. For example, AmazonSmile and similar setups allow for people that are interested to donate through purchasing products that they were already ordering. While these methods donate a small portion of a product’s price at a time, these add up if you and others in your family use the services frequently.
Money is not the only way to get involved, and Canterbury maintains that bringing assistance to events focusing on ALS is a great way to give back. The ALS Association keeps a running list of events that are taking place over the course of the year, giving those interested a chance to observe what is happening in the community. Events may need people for anything for participating, volunteering, or organizing, and individuals that are interested can reach out to see where they may be needed. As expansive as the ALS Association is as a resource, there may be events for ALS in your own community that may not be posted to the site. For this reason, staying up to date with bulletins in your town or city can help you identify ALS focused events that may need volunteers or donations. Kevin Canterbury speaks to how getting involved is an excellent way to join the fight against ALS because there are so many different roles that you can fill.
Contribute to the Conversation
To grow awareness and increase organizations’ capacity to receive donation, people that are involved will need to contribute to the dialogue on ALS and the positive work charities are doing. Kevin recognizes that many people that donate do so in secret as to not gloat on their contributions. While humbly making contributions is great, Kevin Canterbury of Arizona notes that sharing information about your donations can have a positive impact if you decide to do so. Reason being, people may also wish to donate if they realize that there are events in their community taking place that need assistance. Sharing information about an organization and the donating process through social media on in person can spread awareness and give involved individuals the opportunity to educate.
Tax season is upon us, and it comes as no surprise that many people are examining their financial plans during the process. The past year has been financially difficult for many of us, as struggles with unexpected costs and unemployment spelled stress for individuals across industries. Kevin Canterbury of Arizona notes that there are a variety of obstacles to financial goals that can occur, however, maintaining a comprehensive financial plan will always be an asset for reaching monetary goals. Here, he draws from his expertise to include a few ways to create a viable financial plan.
Review Your Current Situation
As a financial advisor, Kevin Canterbury has seen individuals of all types of financial realities working towards their futures. Reviewing one’s current financial standing is a crucial aspect of creating a financial plan because it allows for setting feasible goals and realizing them. Kevin Canterbury notes that there are several ways to meaningfully assess your current financial situation. One is to ensure that all your financial documents are accessible and accurate. These statements will paint a clear picture of factors such as take-home pay, taxes, assets, saving history, insurance, and bills. Having all documentation readily available will help with determining assets, one of the most crucial parts of constructing a viable financial plan.
Determine Financial Goals
Determining financial goals is an important step in building a financial plan because it puts all that one is doing into perspective. There are a variety of things that an individual may want to put money towards. For example, retirement, children’s college funds, and home purchases are all common financial goals that people build towards over the course of their career. Having them all logged in some way will help with determining how much money will be needed to reach your specific goals. It is important to remember that financial goals can include both short and long-term planning. The order that you wish to accomplish goals can go a long way towards determining how much should be put towards each.
Create a Budget and Cash Flow Planning
A budget is crucial for a financial plan because it serves as the litmus test for financial goals. Determining where your money needs to go provides a road map for your expenses, both big and small. A budget calculator or spreadsheet can help ensure that expenses such as must-have items, nice-to- have items, and irregular expenses can be accounted for without much brain power. This can prevent overspending and give critical insights into spending habits. While budgets are very important to a financial plan, Kevin Canterbury of Arizona recognizes that they do not need to be set in stone. If you feel as though your budget is not in line with the goals that you have in place, speaking to a professional and utilizing online resources are great ways to reassess and keep building upon your financial future.
Address Debt Management Strategies
If left unchecked, high-interest debt can wreak havoc on even the most fine-tuned financial plans. Kevin Canterbury of Arizona acknowledges that addressing debt and paying them down when possible is an important strategy for managing them optimally. Ideally, working debt payment into a working budget will ensure that payments are not missed and that interest rates do not continue to climb. Some individuals that have different sources of debt may have issues prioritizing them, but a financial advisor can help determine aspects of how much of a budget can safely go towards debt repayment.