I love my job. I get to meet interesting and inspiring people but most importantly I learn so much from the clients we work with. Here’s a great example. I was introduced to Give As You Live™ by a good friend and ex Firefly client “Here’s a company you’d like Claire.” My friend knows that I’m passionate about charitable giving (he often sponsors me), plus online living and shopping and new interesting business models. I delved further. As it happened Give as You Live™ has since become a client, but this blog post is more personal. This is how Give as you Live™ has worked for me personally, and I would urge all Firefly friends to Give as you Live™.

I do much of my shopping online after 9.30pm – as do many Mums. I book holidays online, house and car insurance online, and of course just recently I racked up many purchases of Christmas presents.

I downloaded the Give as you Live™ application apprehensively. Will this slow down my pc? (No, it didn’t). Will this muck up all my searches? (No, it doesn’t). Will this be really distracting and annoying? (No, it really isn’t).

I chose my charity and began shopping. My first purchase was wine from Wine Hound. All went to plan, the wine arrived at home and I’d clocked up my first purchase. I then bought a new printer from John Lewis and a couple of Christmas presents from Firebox and Send It. It was so satisfying to see that for relatively no extra effort, and from great retailers, I had raised £10 for Beating Bowel Cancer in just 4 fairly minor purchases. The instant gratification is addictive.

My New Year’s resolution is to continue to Give as you Live™ all year round – I reckon given my existing online spending habits I can easily raise £100 in 2011 for Beating Bowel Cancer. The next big purchase coming up is a replacement washing machine and then a holiday.

Three points to make:

1. Buying through Give as you Live™ shouldn’t cost you any more than you would spend online anyway – and it doesn’t

2. The retailers have to be registered and that list is very large already and growing daily. I have pretty much always found what I need. I couldn’t find a tortoise though.

3. At the moment the app only works on Internet Explorer and Firefox, which is what has caused the most hassle, but other internet browsers are on their way imminently.

Please try it. You have nothing to lose and much to give – for no extra cost other than the couple of minutes it takes to download an app.

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