October 21st, 2010
04:55 PM ET

iReport challenge: #BeAHero for a rainy day

Editor's Note: Learn about the top 10 CNN Heroes of 2010 and vote for the CNN Hero of the Year at CNNHeroes.com.

[Updated at 4:55 p.m.] Today's challenge to save $1 got lots of reactions. Some said they’re already “scraping the bottom of the barrel" or that we should be spending to stimulate the economy, not saving. 

But others took the challenge, and we’d like to recognize a few:

Susan Bush drank water from the office today instead of buying soda and tea.

JayInAtlanta turned off the lights in his home office, used only natural light, opened the windows to keep the temperature moderate without heating or air, and unplugged his cell phone charger.

“I'm hoping it saved me even more than $1 on the electricity bill,” he wrote.

Our favorite story of the day comes from iReporter Sherbien Dacalanio, 27, a freelance TV producer and coffee addict in the Philippines. Dacalanio budgets 500 pesos (about $11.50) per day for his caffeine fixes – 4 to 5 coffees from one of his favorite coffee shops – but today, he bought a box of 10 instant coffee packets for just 47.50 pesos (about $1).

The savings were big, he said, even when taking into account that “I need to combine 2 sachets of the instant coffee to replace the taste of brewed coffee that I always crave.”

Others suggested we’ll only hurt the economy more by cutting our spending.

Susie wrote: “Saving that dollar will simply provide more layoffs as businesses or transportation or etc. do not get the revenue… I would propose spending that dollar more wisely, supporting small local businesses or healthier foods or something leading to energy conservation.”

[Posted at 10:31 a.m.] The economy has forced the world to make drastic changes.

The British government this week announced deep budget cuts to trim a massive deficit, including 490,000 jobs slashed from the public payroll over four years. Tonight, CNN's Soledad O'Brien will look at how some are fighting debt from the pulpit in "Almighty Debt: A Black in America Special," premiering at 9 p.m. ET.

For today’s “Be A Hero” challenge, we invite you to “Be A Hero” for a rainy day:

Find a way to save $1.

Make one financial choice that you weren’t planning. Pick a cheaper lunch option, or order water instead of soda. Skip that afternoon coffee – or make it yourself. Walk instead of taking public transportation, or take the bus instead of a taxi. Clip a coupon – and use it. Buy generic instead of brand-name product.

Then tell us what you did. Post in the comments below, tweet what you did with the hash tag #BeAHero – for example, "To #BeAHero for a rainy day, I saved $1 by bringing lunch" - or send us an iReport about what you did to keep an extra dollar in your wallet.

I’ll start: I saved $1 by drinking the office coffee, instead of buying.

Come back later, when I’ll post a wrap-up of the day’s heroics.

soundoff (48 Responses)
  1. Linda

    I take my lunch every day to work, which is a five minute drive. I used to bike to work, but just had my hip replaced. I always drink filtered water every day in washable glass jars. We use half of the lights at my place of business to save daily. We recycle cardboard, glass, tin, plastic, aluminum cans, white paper, newspapers, adn books. Tthe therosatat has been adjusted just this year to save money. I use coupons when shopping and share the ones I don't use with others. I wanted to plant a vegetable garden, but don't have enough sun in my yard. 🙁 I am always looking for more ways to save money and help the environment. We only have one earth.

    October 21, 2010 at 9:06 pm | Report abuse |
  2. MichelleZ

    1.Cut the cable/land line/internet pkg for a total savings of $85.00 p/mo. Now the kids are more active and not distracted during homework and my cell can do everything the land line/internet can do (except print, I do that @ wk or library). 2. Stopped renting at Blockbuster, savings of = $35.00 (this one hurts and is truly a sacrifice) 3.Switched from bottled water to tap which saves at least $60.00 p/mo between myself and 2 kids. 4.I buy toiletries/paper/cleaning products & the pet foods/cat litter in bulk which saves not only $ but time, gas etc. 5. Gave the kids a clothing allowance and encouraged them to investigate sales at different stores and they found 2 for 1 jean sales and discovered the $5 dollar T-shirt store. 6. STOPPED EATING OUT and having fun planning meals and cooking with my daughters which not only saves big $ but is great for family time.

    October 21, 2010 at 11:51 pm | Report abuse |
  3. just-me

    good challenge! Americans need to be more save- conscience! If we as acountry started saving to buy things that are pricier instead of paying for them with money we don't have from credit cards, then there would be a whole lot less Americans suffering financially. My family and I follow the Dave Ramsey financial plan, I highly recommend it. Save, save, save. But don't be a money hoard. Save and then spend.

    October 22, 2010 at 6:52 am | Report abuse |
  4. greg

    Honestly? How can you be scraping the bottom of the barrel and emailing/Web posting to CNN at the same time??

    October 22, 2010 at 11:36 am | Report abuse |
  5. Sonya B

    Just when you think you need to shop again, cut the end of your tubes (toothpaste, makeup...) horizontally and it will last another week or two. Save money and keep the trash out of the landfill as long as possible.

    October 24, 2010 at 9:31 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Savings

    Hi its just won amazing and i don't believe this i like it very much.


    October 29, 2010 at 7:19 am | Report abuse |
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