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“found money”


This blog post is going to touch on financial issues.  First, know that God takes care of us.  We do not beg.  We do match the ministry to the financial resources available.  Our bank accounts are never large.  Sometimes we can do more/sometimes we do less.  This year has been a very slow recovery from the annual downturn that occurs after Christmas.   The purpose for this blog is to call attention to some ways to bring in ‘found money’, you know the quarter you pick up on the street, the penny that has been run over 20 times in the parking lot – found money.

We have one young man, I think he was 8 or 9 y/o and he would empty his pockets of change into a jar and send that to us when it was full.  Deep sigh…  we are humbled by such stories.   Some of you have supported us with a monthly donation for the seven years we have been with Vine International, some for years prior to that while we were with MedEquip Missions.  Grateful doesn’t cover what we feel about you.  You keep us here.

But there are some resources out there that you may not know about that can increase financial resources to Vine International.  We take each donated dollar and convert it into $40 – $80 of medical aid here in Guatemala.  That in turn is visible in the lives of mothers, children saved during birth.  Children that live through attacks of disease, Christian hospitals and clinics that expand their services, souls saved because the church based clinic can intervene in a compassionate way.

Here are some of the things I do.  I use  My family got a Kindle for me a couple of Christmas’ ago.  I order books frequently.  After signing up for SmileAmazon there is a window that comes up to allow you to support a ministry.  Vine International Inc. is registered with them.  Amazon gives I think 0.5 cents per dollar of purchase.  If you use Amazon Prime, do Christmas shopping on line this amount gets totaled up and sent to Vine every year.   While it seems small, if most people on our list did this it would add up.

I use Goodsearch instead of other search engines.  I find the process is very close to the quality of Google Search.  They give a penny for every search.  With investigating new ministries, researching medical equipment, finding repair parts, many other things that I use searches for accounts for 7 to 10 dollars a year.  Small amount but if your college and high school student doing research for term papers used this instead of Google it would add up.  GoodSearch/GoodShop have put 12.4 million dollars into nonprofits in the US since its founding, a penny at a time!

I also use GoodShop .  If you do online shopping check this out.  Today as I write this Good Shop and Hewlitt-Packard are offering 25% off of their laptop line for back to school.  There are hundreds of namebrand stores on this site.  They give a percentage of purchase to the ministry of your choice (Vine International perhaps??).  When you set up the GoodSearch account you simply put Vine International in the box.

Things that I don’t do but you might qualify for!  Who do you work for?  65% of Fortune 500 companies match your contributions to nonprofits.  The parameters are too many for me to list.  Some companies insist that the nonprofit serves in their local region, in which case we may not qualify.  But I encourage you to check it out with your human resource department.  Some of these companies give substantially matching $5K -10K – even 25,000 dollars per year.

40% of Fortune 500 companies give to nonprofits with which you volunteer your time and skills.  Some ask that you give 5 hours or 500 hours in a year’s time, but they give $15 an hour or more depending on the company’s guidelines.

There are many unique ways companies give; BP (British Petroleum) gives $300 to employees choice of qualified charities; Nestle (yes chocolate) only matches 50% of your gift but if you give a day’s salary to a charity they give you TWO VACATION DAYS!; RealNetworks, matches up to $10,000, gives $15 per hour of volunteer time to charity of your choice, and have a loyalty clause – if you have worked with them for 5 years they will give $500 to charity of your choice; CarMax is now matching employees dependents donations until the 26 yrs old.

Many companies not in the Fortune 500 do this as well.  Companies find they can attract and keep a certain kind of desirable employee by offering such programs.  If your company has this kind of heart, take advantage of it.  Quite obviously these programs can change without warning.  Some of the information gleaned from a search using Goodsearch (claimed about 4 cents) could be dated so you would need to research the parameters your company has set up.

Finally, some companies give product.  Food pantry in Asheville NC would fold if it were not for the local industry giving food to them.  Food is not our need – it would be things medical, and that can be very broad subject.  Do you have ideas or questions?  Please share with us.

We are grateful for your support.  On Thursday the 200th container gets loaded and pointed towards Guatemala.  Please pray for rapid approval in customs.  There are two anesthesia machines from Metropolitan Medical in Asheville, for Hospital Elena in Cobulco.  We really want those machines in that hospital before their next surgical team and it will be very tight.  We are always looking for sponsor for containers – check out the process on our web site.

In Christ,

Dennis and Cindy McCutcheon

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