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Marc Joseph interviewed in Success Magazine!

marc joseph success magazineSome of you know that DollarDays’ CEO, Marc Joseph, authored the book, The Secrets of Retailing or How to Beat Wal-Mart! to help small businesses compete in the world of big box stores. In fact, DollarDays.com has a wealth of Marc Joseph’s business and entrepreneurial articles, focusing on small businesses for you to enjoy.

But this time, Marc didn’t do the writing; he was interviewed by Success Magazine for an article they titled “Want to write a book? Our step by step guide.”  Marc gave his candid advice for wannabe authors including how writing a book can ultimately help your business. You can read the article here.

March 24, 2014   No Comments

The War on Poverty is back; this time, it’s the people’s burden

 

blogmar14In the United States, one in five children live in a household with not enough food to eat. Feeding America reports that 15.9 million kids under the age of 18 live in this condition where they are unable to consistently access nutritious and adequate amounts of food necessary for a healthy life. Last month Congress passed a sweeping  that cut an additional $8.6 billion from food stamps (SNAP, Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program) over the next 10 years. This is on top of the $5 billion the program lost last November because the 2009 Recovery Act stimulus bill expired. Forty-seven million Americans currently participate in SNAP, up 47 percent since the Great Recession started in 2008. This means that 15 percent of us rely on this program to eat. Last year the US spent $78 billion on the SNAP program.

We don’t have to be math whizzes to know that a 47 percent increase in participation coupled with a reduction in the funding of $13.6 billion spells misery for millions of Americans. This program has been the federal social safety net for low-income Americans and now this safety net is beginning to tear.

The New York Times reports that more and more people are beginning to show up at soup kitchens and food pantries. The first reduction in November cut out 23 meals per month for a family of four. In New York City, the number of people seeking food aid grew by 85 percent after the November cuts while 23 percent of the city’s food pantries and soup kitchens reduced the number of meals they provided. Food stamps were the signature program of President Johnson’s War on Poverty during the 1960s which led to fewer poor children going hungry or having nutrition related developmental delays. Birth weights also grew for children of poor mothers on food stamps. As a nation, we can’t afford to go back to the nutritional standards before the War on Poverty.

Luckily for us, our nonprofit organizations are stepping in and have created food banks to help fill the void continually shaped by Congress. The world’s first food bank started in 1967, right after the War on Poverty began. St. Mary’s Food Bank was started by John Van Hengel who was volunteering at St. Vincent DePaul in Phoenix, Arizona, serving dinners to those in need. A mother told him the soup kitchens and grocery store dumpsters were the only way she could feed her children. John went to the local parish, St. Mary’s Basilica and shared his vision of collecting food and money for food and depositing it where those in need could withdraw it. They gave John $3,000 and an abandoned building to get the food bank up and running. Today food banks touch just about every corner of the USA.

For example, Ozarks Food Harvest, one of the Feeding America food banks in Springfield, MO, distributes food to 320 hunger relief organizations across 29 Missouri counties reaching 41,000 people a month. To help hungry children, they have a weekend backpack program, where they fill 1,500 backpacks with food so these underprivileged kids can have something to eat when they can’t eat at school. How can you not love an organization that takes care of others every day of the week!

The State of Kentucky is setting an example for the rest of government in how to encourage its citizens to help others. Its legislature has made it easier for Kentuckians to donate to the Farms to Food Banks Program by just checking a box on their state tax returns to have part of their tax refunds to automatically go to this program which brings farm food directly into the food banks. This is how the government should behave in inspiring it citizenship to help each other.

Once again, we as individuals must step in to fill the gap recently created by our Congress. If you can’t devote your time, start by helping with cash to donate for food to our food banks. Here is a link to all the Feeding America Food Banks in your area.  Here is a link to helping Meals On Wheels, which brings together 5,000 local nutritional programs for seniors and deliver over 1 million meals a day.  And at DollarDays on our  Facebook page, we are giving away $5,000 in food and products to local food banks, so make sure you nominate the one in your town.

General Motors Foundation last month donated $500,000 to the Capuchin Soup Kitchen serving the people of metro Detroit. Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Florida recently donated $250,000 to the Florida Association of Food Banks. The Alaska Federal Credit Union donated money to 17 food banks. Businesses with a conscience are beginning to step up to fill this massive void, but so far there is too big a gap to fill.  We have got to make up the billions of dollars lost to support those in the most need in this new order of priorities created by Congress. We as citizens of this fine country need to create a new grass roots effort for this latest War on Poverty. Having 47 million Americans in need of food is not the country our forefathers envisioned. It is also not the country we want to leave to our children.

March 4, 2014   No Comments

$5,000 Merchandise Giveaway for Local Food Banks

On Facebook, during March 2014, DollarDays is asking its fans to nominate a local food bank to win in the $5,000 food and merchandise giveaway. DollarDays donates $5,000 each month to charitable organizations that help communities, nominated by their fans.

On March 31, 2014, 18 organizations will be randomly selected to receive the following awards (thanks to you!!):

  • First Place: $2,000 shopping spree
  • Second Place: $1,000 shopping spree
  • Third Place: $500 shopping spree
  • Fifteen organizations will each receive $100 shopping sprees.  One hundred dollars may not sound like a lot, but when you consider our wholesale pricing and free shipping, $100 goes a long way!!

Spread the word and be sure to visit our Facebook page to nominate a food bank in your community!

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March 3, 2014   No Comments

1,500 Pairs of Flip Flops Donated to Five Charities

During February, DollarDays held a Facebook contest where our fans nominated their favorite childrens’ charities to receive flip flops in our 1,500 pair giveaway. The response was huge to help the kids! We randomly selected five organizations to each receive 300 pairs of flip flops for boys and girls.

And the winners are:
• Star of Hope, Houston TX
• Phoenix Rescue Mission, Phoenix AZ
• Pine Street Inn, Boston MA
• Soles4Souls, Old Hickory TN
• Children of the Night, Van Nuys CA

Each organization will be contacted via email to let them know they won and to expect the arrival of their flip flops next week.

Be sure to participate in our March Facebook $5,000 giveaway to local food banks! Click here!

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March 3, 2014   No Comments

How to make extra income with your own online store!

ecommerce1The online store business (e-commerce) has come a long way in the past few years, which is good for those who want to open an e-commerce store to supplement his or her income or to go into business full time. The cost is low, the ease of creating your new store has never been easier and adding products to sell is a breeze!

Now, with DollarDays’ Dropshipping Program, a store owner no longer has to invest in expensive inventory. Customers order from your website that has been populated with some or all of DollarDays’ 300,000 products and DollarDays ships the product(s) to your customer with a packing slip that has your store’s name on it. Pretty simple, right?

Watch this quick video to see if an e-commerce store is for YOU!

February 17, 2014   No Comments

Congress Could Use a Lesson from America’s Innovators

marc feb14 huffpo blogby Marc Joseph, CEO of DollarDays; reprinted from The Huffington Post

The compromise spending bill for $1.1 trillion keeps the government open through September, according to CNN. It increases funding to Head Start by $1 billion for early childhood education which makes sense after its recent low point with the forced budget cuts last year. It increases the paychecks of federal workers and military personnel by one percent. It reduces funding to the IRS and Environmental Protection Agency. It launches policies at getting more low-risk passengers through security quicker at airports. So it has a little bit in it for just about everyone. But once again, Congress is kicking the can down the road because we are going to have this same contentious conversation next fall when this extension expires.

The New York Times broke down the cost of this new budget per each US resident: $259 goes to food stamps now known as SNAP, $61 goes to the child school lunch program, $30 goes for crop insurance and $40 to loans and direct payments to farmers, $2,672 covers Social Security and $1,591 for Medicare, $26 goes to the FBI and $22 to the Federal prison system.

These budget impasses remind me of the movie “Groundhog Day,” where we wake up and repeat the same mistake month after month, year after year. There has got to be some innovative thinkers outside and inside of government that can get us out of this rut of repeating the same mistakes over and over again.

One big idea is coming from Ron Unz according to USA Today. Mr. Unz is a Silicon Valley multimillionaire and registered Republican, who is pushing a California proposal to boost the minimum pay rate to $12 an hour. Unz believes that taxpayers, for too long, have been subsidizing low wages since the government pays for food stamps and other programs these workers utilize. He feels raising the minimum wage to $12 would lift millions of people out of poverty, driving up income and sales tax revenue; at the same time saving taxpayers billions of dollars, since these workers would no longer qualify for many of the welfare benefits.

Another big idea came out of Chicago under the leadership of Mayor Rahm Emanuel. He created the small business center in City Hall last spring to streamline small business services. The city has reduced the number of business licenses from 117 to 49, which has saved small businesses $700,000 in just the last 6 months. Chicago is phasing out the Head Tax which saved small businesses $4.8 million in 2013. This is just an example of how cities can cut through the red tape to not only make its citizens’ lives easier, but to actually save money.

TOMS is a for profit company that whenever it sells a pair of its shoes, another pair of shoes is given to an impoverished child. Additionally, when TOMS sells a pair of eyewear, part of the profit goes to help restoring sight in those who need help, and according to their site, “helping to restore sight restores independence, economic potential and educational opportunity.” They have taken the “giving back” theory a step further and last fall launched TOMS Marketplace , that gives socially conscious suppliers a platform to sell products that help support causes ranging from education and health to nutrition and clean water.

Most organizations don’t have the resources like the city of Chicago or TOMS to help make a major impact in changing our country or making our Federal Budget a non-issue. The largest charity in the US is the United Way which is a network of 1,800 United Way communities and manages $4.26 billion. They “envision a world where all individuals and families achieve their human potential through education, income stability and healthy lives.” The second largest is the Salvation Army, that manages $4.08 billion to carry out their mission of “to feed, to clothe, to comfort and to care.” These budgets seem small compared to the $1.1 trillion Federal Budget, yet they do take some pressure off the government in taking care of everything the underprivileged need. I guess it is up to all of us to do our best to relieve some of this pressure. At DollarDays on our Facebookpage, we are giving away hundreds of flip flops (the TOMS model inspired us) to organizations who help kids in need, so make sure you nominate a worthy organization.

Sometimes I think we put too much faith in our government that they will take care of pushing our economy forward as well as taking care of those most in need. Gallup Poll just reported that just 13% of Americans approve the job Congress is doing. If that was the approval rating in any other part of our society, they would all be gone. This is the group we must rely on next fall to permanently fix our day to day operations of our government. Based on their recent history, I am skeptical this will happen. That is why the rest of us have to step up with the “big ideas” to make our civilization work with or without our government’s support.

February 6, 2014   No Comments

We’re donating 1,500 pairs of flip flops to kids in need

What charitable organization for kids would you choose?
Click on the image below to nominate a children’s organization that you would like to donate 300 pairs of kids flip flops to.

DollarDays is donating 1,500 pairs of flip flops—five organizations that benefit children that are nominated by YOU will each receive 300 pairs of flip flops—just in time for Spring (they will arrive mid to late March)!

It’s easy to nominate an organization. It might take a minute, but it could be the minute that makes a difference in the lives of 300 kids! Feel free to share with your friends! If you are on a board, for example,  the local children’s hospital, this is a perfect opportunity for you to nominate the hospital and share with the board.

Thank you so much! Click this image or this link to nominate. http://bit.ly/1i5JvtV
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February 5, 2014   No Comments

We have winners! Homeless Shelters get $5k in Merchandise

The results are in and we have winners in our January 2014 $5,000 Facebook Merchandise Giveaway for Homeless Shelters that were nominated by YOU!  This was one of the most unusual random selection of winners, as two homeless shelters were nominated so many times that they were selected for more than one award! We use a computer generated selection process, so we went with giving WestCare’s Pikeville Emergency/Homeless Shelter in Pikeville, KY $200 in merchandise, as they were selected twice and Harvard Square Homeless Shelter in Cambridge, MA won $500 in merchandise as they were selected five times!

Congratulations to the winning shelters and many thanks to those who nominated them. They will be shopping for much needed items to help the homeless stay warm and comfortable in this bitter cold winter.  And with DollarDays‘ wholesale pricing, these awards will go far! Plus, all winners receive free shipping.
DollarDays continues to support causes for the greater good and encourages you to follow us on Facebook to be sure to enter our monthly $5,000 merchandise giveaways to charitable causes.
And the winners are:
• Greensboro Urban Ministry in Greensboro, NC won first place, a $2,000 shopping spree.
• Padd Homeless Shelter in Dixon, IL won second place with a $1,000 shopping spree.
• BeAboutIt.org in Douglasville, GA won third place with a $500 shopping spree.
• Harvard Square Homeless Shelter in Cambridge, MA won a $500 shopping spree.
• WestCare’s Pikeville Emergency/Homeless Shelter in Pikeville, KY won a$200 shopping spree.
The following homeless shelters each won a $100 shopping spree:
• Our House in Little Rock, AR
• Singled Out-FBC Salisbury in Salisbury, NC
• Mr. Bob’s Under the Bridge in Cedarburg, WI
• My Father’s House in Paoloa, KS
• Saint Charles Homeless Shelters & Services For The Needy in St. Charles, IL
• Wheeler Mission in Indianapolis, IN
• Chicas Latinas De Sacramento in Sacramento, CA
• Bangor Area Homeless Shelter in Bangor, ME

Each shelter has been emailed with instructions on how to conduct their shopping spree. If you haven’t received one, please check your spam folder. Also, you can call Chris Steagall at 877.837.9569 ext 148 and he will take care of your order and get it shipped!  He can answer any questions for you as well.

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February 4, 2014   2 Comments

Nominate a Homeless Shelter to Win $5k Merchandise

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It’s freezing cold in most of the country and our homeless population is at the mercy of shelters across America. Please do your part to nominate a homeless shelter in your area to win in the DollarDays’ $5,000 merchandise Giveaway to homeless shelters. Eighteen shelters will win a shopping spree; first place is $2,000, second place is $1,000, third is $500 and fifteen shelters will each receive $100 (shipping is included). Winners will be selected on January 31, 2014 in a random drawing from the shelters you nominate.

Please visit our Facebook page to nominate a shelter in your area. Together we can make a difference in the lives of many homeless Americans; lives that were hard enough before the bitter winter descended upon us. Thank you!

 

 

 

January 27, 2014   No Comments

January 2014 Fleece Blanket Giveaway Winners!

jan14contest_160x300Perfect timing. With the country as cold as it is right now, blankets are a pretty good prize to receive!  From the homeless to pet shelters, we know the blankets will be a blessing for all.

• Our first place winner is FISH of McHenry and they will receive 240 blankets.

• Second place went to Unitarian Universalist Society of Geneva and they will get 144 blankets.

• And third place goes to True Freedom Ministries with 96 blankets being sent to them.

Twentytwo non-profits each received 24 blankets. They are:

Mystic Force Foundation
Animal Welfare ASSN New Jersey
The Christian Center
Rikki’s Refuge
Pet Pal Animal Shelter
St. Anthony’s Chuch
The Wish Project
Mental Health Guild’s Homeless Outreach
Patterson Elementary Booster Club
Phoenix Children’s Project
Blankets and Bears
TASC
Robcyn’s
Clayton Temple
Lost Sheep Ministry
Anchor House
Loaves and Fishes of the Rio Grande Valley
United Ummah of Philly
Tri-County Animal Rescue Center
Tiny Babies Foundation
Restitution of Hope
Mr. Bob’s Under the Bridge

 

Many thanks to all of you who took the time to nominate a non-profit to receive free Marc Gold fleece blankets. Please be sure to enter our current giveaway, which is $5,000 in merchandise to homeless shelters. they can buy a lot of things they need at wholesale pricing.

January 20, 2014   4 Comments