Neighbors Helping Neighbors Cropped - Facebook

Shelley Kohut and a team of volunteers have become social media philanthropists funding temporary financial needs in their Canadian community one Facebook auction at a time.

Ever since they started in 2013, Neighbors Helping Neighbors has provided ‘hand-ups’ – rather than handouts – to citizens struggling to pay the bills in Sundre, Alberta.

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Town members donate household items to be auctioned off on their Facebook page with the proceeds going to residents in their town; this serves as a win-win for those who want to use their clutter for charity and for those who temporarily have a hard time paying a bill or affording gas money for a week or two.

Neighbors Helping Neighbors reveal they’ve done everything from giving food and gas cards to an elderly gentleman while his stolen identity was sorted out by the government, to adopting a family for Christmas when the head of household was off the job because of a surgery.

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“[The hand-ups are] not to maintain a lifestyle — they are to help people who, in their normal lives, have hit some kind of hurdle, especially these days,” Kohut told the Sundre Roundup.

It all started when Kohut’s church pastor gave her $100 to pay forward in an act of kindness. The organization expanded to recruit more volunteers until there were two auctions a week raising $2,000 to $3,000 dollars a month.

Any community could do the same thing, and a quick google search turns up many ways to auction items on Facebook.

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