Free Stuff

Free Stuff

What are the ways that rich people give away free stuff? Every year trillions of dollars - you read that right - are redistributed as the rich of the world throw away, sell for cheap, donate or invest. There are many examples such as the Giving Pledge founded by Warren Buffet and Bill Gates with total charitable donations surpassing 350 billion dollars.

Rich people pay for students to go to schools, help mitigate the effects of a catastrophe or pay for a teenager to sail around the world. In other words, rich people usually aren't giving money for free! We all want the same thing: to be amazed and compelled by feats of courage, determination, intelligence or to be moved by pain or suffering of others so much so that we do something about it.

Rich people giving away free stuff

    Rich people giving away free stuff: from the mundane to the insane:

  • Free stuff on the street: wealthy cities around the world are littered with wealth, with an entire subset of its economies supporting "trash entrepreneurs".
  • Read about people's experiences with money free living in the city. More here!
  • Facebook groups, online auctions and classified websites all over the world have incredible deals often 50-90% off from original purchase prices. Search for "free stuff + name of city" and be amazed.
  • Dumpster diving in wealthy neighborhoods can get a person hundreds of thousands of dollars a year. There are youtube stars on the subject. Google it!
  • Investing on startups: The rich - usually venture capital funds - diversify their investments by putting money in startups. Often, not even a product is required: they have enough money to invest in your dreams!
  • Adventure and the arts are constantly being sponsored by the rich all over the world. Some companies like Red Bull are setup to be launching pads to sponsor adventures and sports often in detriment to capital gains. Art exhibitions with billions in art are sponsored by the wealthy and available to people. All at moderate prices.
  • Entertainment: the rich invest billions in Hollywood, television and theater often losing money. A lot of the entertainment we consume exists thanks to the risky business of entertainment investment.
  • Scholarships: Universities in the western world receive grants from the rich to be invested in scholarships. Some endowments reach billions.
  • Research grants: Research departments are fabulously wealthy thanks to the wealthy. Some causes - like global warning and space exploration - receive billions in investment.
  • Charities: these receive nearly a trillion dollars in investments every year from wealthy people all over the world. If we add churches to this equation, they we are talking trillions more in tax-free investments.

In no way this is to suggest that there aren't issues of wealth inequality in the world. Yet, people fail to realize their privileged position and how we consume and waste in quantities vastly superior than that of the world's poorest.

Rich people giving away free stuff

    Rich people giving away free stuff: some ways they do!

  • Donations to charities, universities, scientific research and the arts.
  • Universal basic income experiments. Some very rich people are pouring billions in UBI research to find out whether or not this is a viable alternative to welfare programs. Y Combinator - for example - is doing this right now
  • Startup investment: the wealthy are betting on students and researchers by putting billions upon billions of dollars in high risk investment. If you have ideas, you can do this yourself.
  • Church related work
  • Holiday handouts. During the holidays, cities experience an unusually high number of activities designed to relief pain and suffering, usually sponsored by the good heart of its more well off citizens. It is not all about soup kitchen volunteerism either.
  • Disaster relief. Billions are donated to disaster relief every year by the rich. Sometimes, one man dishes out 50 million.
  • Helping the needy: there are numerous drug rehabs, needle programs, homeless shelters and soup kitchens that are sponsored by the rich.

Rich people giving away free stuff

    Rich people giving away free stuff: some ways they don't

  • Cash handouts. There is not free cash being distributed "randomly" out there, without a specific purpose. Why would anyone do that? Now if you are in need of specific assistance and cash is part of it, people actually give away cash.

Rich people giving away free stuff

    Rich people giving away free stuff: University Programs & Scholarships

    Most universities are supported by grants that come from wealthy individuals or companies. Some schools get billions with single donations reaching 400 million dollars.

  • University research programs are largely sponsored by wealthy donors
  • University students get scholarships, sometimes from celebrities.
  • Buildings and equipment purchases, often named after wealthy alumni.

Rich people giving away free stuff

    Rich people giving away free stuff: Supporting churches

    There are hundreds of thousands of churches around the world. They are supported by its people. Although not perfect, they are responsible for billions in charity investment around the world.

  • Charity around the world
  • War & disaster relief. Most churches in wealthy countries work hard to help people when disaster hits.
  • Food bank programs. A quick google search suggests most christian churches around the world have some form of food bank or food pantry.
  • Homeless programs. Called homeless ministries in their circles, these are helpful and people give generously.
  • Education

Rich people giving away free stuff

    Rich people giving away free stuff: Supporting charities

    People feel good about philanthropy and even having the label "philanthropist". As a result, they want to help, both because it feels good and because it is a social status thing to do. Nothing unusual there right?

  • Americans alone donate hundreds of billions every year.
  • People organize themselves in local charities to support the homeless, addicts and others in disadvantageous positions.
  • People spend vast amounts of time improving the lives of each other at work, working to reduce conflict and excessively competitive and toxic environments. Look for your local Meetup.com group

Rich people giving away free stuff

    Rich people giving away free stuff: Supporting adventures

    Wealthy individuals and companies are always on the lookout to sponsor adventurists that have a story that is compelling and interesting to them. In other words, if you are looking for money to do an adventure, all you have to do is to find someone that likes your story and your objectives! This exists and you can even get tips about it by adventurists themselves.

  • Ocean exploration
  • Space exploration
  • Cave exploration
  • Polar exploration, almost always sponsored by wealthy individuals
  • The limits of flight such as the Solar Impulse project.
  • Unique human feats of adventure and endurance.

Rich people giving away free stuff

    Rich people giving away free stuff: Supporting entertainment

    Most of the entertainment people get to enjoy is a private enterprise investment of wealthy individuals or firms. From christmas markets to public festivals to cinema and theater, these are often pet projects that people get to enjoy for moderate prices.

  • Theater
  • Cinema
  • Public festivals
  • Parks

  • Rich people giving away free stuff: Supporting art

  • Public art
  • Expositions
  • Presenting art around the world
  • Museums and galleries

Rich people giving away free stuff

    Rich people giving away free stuff: Supporting Science

    Smarts is a form of wealth too. Some people like to donate their time developing amazing world changing technology and give it to the world. Some people donate money to charities that develop technologies that help others.

  • Disaster relief technology. Look at this idea, for example.
  • Open source or free software. This person rejected millions just to keep his popular video player free for the world.

    Networks for people giving away free stuff

    How to find people and the stuff they're giving away? On the internet there are various places for free stuff.

  • Freecycle is widely known and works through email lists
  • If you're in the Netherlands, you want to check this article in Dutch.

    Do you know any others? Please let us know.

    Richest millionaires in the world

    An updated list with the world's richest people can be found here.

    Free food

    Food is also a form of stuff. We have written a complete article about getting free food. It has tips ranging from dumpster diving to growing your own food and asking around at restaurants. Good stuff.

    Other tips for free stuff

  • There are many local Facebook groups for people who are giving away stuff. You can also try to post a request there. Search for example for "free stuff".
  • Instead of owning stuff yourself you can also ask your neighbors if you can borrow stuff from them. You can ask personally but there are also networks to enable sharing stuff such as Peerby.

  • Fixed locations for free stuff

  • In a give-away-shop you can find a lot of free things. People take stuff there to give it away for free.
  • Big trash: In Amsterdam and some other cities it's easy to find good stuff in the street. Check your local trash collection days.
  • Free grocery coupons

    With Freester. you can earn hundreds of dollars worth of free grocery coupons every month. You just have to do some surveys - and you'll get the coupons for your local grocery store.

Further reading

Book: Steps Towards Inner Peace

The Peace-Pilgrim was a woman living almost 30 years without money, in the walhalla of money: the United States. She made many walking trips and took only little on those trips. She lived just from what people gave her and she never needed any money!

Her message was about an inner peace that is reachable by anyone. You as well! It's the ultimate form of happiness, always in peace with whatever is there. Always be at peace with yourself.

"Steps Towards Inner Peace" is the book published after her death. The book is available for free. You can order it at the website about the book and there is also a digital version in Dutch and other languages.

Also check Wikipedia for more information about her life and the website Peacepilgrim.

Find Edible Plants

Fruit such as strawberries, apples and raspberries don't have to come from a supermarket. You can find it in your street, a park or a forest near you. You can reap this food relatively often. And except fruit there are also chestnuts, dandelions, wild herbs and a lot more.