The Big Give: Making Money & Giving Back

oprah winfrey abc the big give

"I can't help the poor if I'm one of them, so I got rich and gave back to em, that's the win-win" - Moment of Clarity, Jay-Z

Big Give or Go home. That's the motto of Oprah Winfrey's interesting new reality game show that airs Sunday nights at 9PM on ABC. It's been running several weeks now, but covers an important aspect of moneymaking that many overlook; the concept of giving back.

Many of the books which discuss wealth acquisition also delve into the topic of giving in order to receive. Roberty Kiyosaki, author of "Rich Dad, Poor Dad", says that most often you'll find that once you've given a donation to your church or other charity, you'll find the gift somehow returns to you with interest. That doesn't mean if you donate $1 to a church, expect to find a bag full of 100 dollar bills, but that you may have some act of gratitude come back to you for your charitable expression.

On Oprah's "The Big Give" contestants are given a unique challenge each week. They are usually given the names of specific people or locations with a set amount of funds, and told to give as big as they can. The goal is to see who can give the biggest by improving life for the community, family or individual. On this past week's episode the four remaining contestants helped give big to two individuals suffering with cancer. One woman got her wish to play piano on stage in the famous Carnegie Hall theater in NYC. The audience included her family and friends, and Natalie King Cole surprised her on stage.

There was a second man who the team also gave big to, also suffering with cancer. He was worried about his piling up medical bills and his mortgage with a wife and kids. The contestants used the help of Jada Pinkett-Smith and Donald Trump. The man and his family were treated to a fun-filled day in New York which included shopping sprees and a ride in Mr. Trump's very own helicopter around NYC. The day ended with the man's entire extended family arriving to see him via horse-drawn buggies. The team then let him know that his mortgage was payed off (thanks to celebrity donations), and that he would have money for his kids' college funds. In addition, he was given a brand new Ford truck.

It's now down to 3 contestants on the show, one of whom is Cameron Johnson, a dot com millionaire and entrepreneur. After reading his book months ago, I was familiar with Cameron and realize that entrepreneurs do have the powers to give big. That's not to say everyone doesn't have this charitable power, but the entrepreneur can usually network with many connections and is good at project management. They also tend to be good at raising up capital to start up ventures, and most companies have trouble saying no when asked to contribute to a charitable function. I'm expecting to see Cameron as the winner, however he really doesn't need the 1 million dollars that Oprah will surprise the final contestant with. So maybe he'll turn around and give big.

The Big Give is down to just 3 contestants and resumes Sunday at 9PM EST on ABC. The Monetizer also encourages you to take a look at the extra earnings they make online and consider earmarking $5 to send to a charity you truly believe in. Or if you'd prefer donating time and help, Oprah's Big Give site also offers printable Good Deed Coupons" here. Remember it's not just about making money, but what you do with that money you make.

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