• Develop a donor-advised fund. Woodley sometimes spends up to $400 a month on community support. Many of the students she works with live below the poverty line, so she feels obligated to help them with money for college application fees, ACT exams, and the like. That comes to about $100. In addition she supplements the needs of a teen mother she knows. Despite her passion for community outreach, she needs to eliminate these two expenses for now, which would further decrease their negative cash flow to $567. Once the couple begins to have discretionary income suggests Ellis, they should budget for charitable donations and then create a charitable giving program using a donor-advised fund through a public charity such as Associated Black Charities or a commercial sponsor such as Fidelity Charitable Gift Fund. Contributions are tax-deductible and invested by the sponsor to earn interest until grants are distributed to the chosen causes.
• Finance college educations. Take the $2,000 contest winnings and open a 529 college savings plan for the two youngest children ($1,000 each).
The couple should meet with a professional on a regular basis to address issues with overspending, budgeting, and for ongoing goal assessment.