Today Dallas is kicking off its Annual Giving Campaign! This year’s campaign theme is Bright start. Big heart, and it’s an opportunity for employees to give back to the community and lend a helping hand to those who need our support. As the lead of the Dallas site committee, I see the front line of our charitable contributions and I have never seen a use of Foundation funds that hasn’t impressed and inspired me. As such, I thought long and hard about my donation this year, in particular how I could increase my giving while still getting the mortgage paid! Charity feels good, I’m not disputing that, but we all have a comfort level and I wondered to myself “is there a way for me to give more without it hurting?” Well, a few weeks ago, on laundry day, something clicked.

Did you ever find a wrinkly 10 dollar bill in your jeans pocket? It was on laundry day, right? Good, glad we’re on the same page. It’s a joyous feeling. You can spend it on anything because, 5 minutes ago, it didn’t exist. Alright, alright, we have a lot of financially astute people here at Celanese who would probably stick it straight in their 401K, but me; let’s just say I might spring for mid-grade gasoline that day. Turns out I have a bunch of 10 dollar bills hiding in places I had never thought to look. I found 40 bucks worth in a direct deposit to a gym I don’t use any more (thanks LCOB basement). This got me addicted. An awkward call to AT&T later and I was paying 30 bucks less a month for cable. I haven’t stopped looking for these monetary leakages; it’s become a bit of an obsession, but I digress.

I made my pledge to the 2015 giving campaign this morning. I took my excess cable payment and woefully underused gym subscription and gave an extra $70 per month to the Celanese Foundation. They politely turned it into $140 per month and now, well, it’s doing so much more. I don’t know exactly which charity it’s going to yet. After the employee survey later in the year, the charities will be decided and will ultimately be local organizations that serve people in greater need than me. Based on our current partnerships, my previously mishandled dough could be paying for 2 hours of counselling for Child victims of sexual abuse, and I’m more than ok with that.

Look, I’m sure many of you are ahead of me on this one. You call your utility providers monthly to renegotiate and they already made an episode of “Extreme Couponing” about you. But for those of you that are still being billed for your Teen People magazine subscription, consider how you could make that money do more.