Thirty-one days without spending a dime: it's what 28-year-old Kevin Zarlengo did to raise money for a good cause. How did he live during the month of May ... and how much did he save?
One of the main challenges for Zarlengo was getting food each day. He explains, "I contacted my friends and family, and through social media, I even had a lot of strangers offer to help. I exchanged doing chores for dinner every night after work." Zarlengo did lots of tasks like walking dogs and cleaning people's houses to get a hot meal.
His body had a transformation as well: the 28-year-old lost just over 10 pounds. His goal for the next 30-60 days is to gain that weight back. Zarlengo biked and walked around Chicago in order to avoid spending any money. "I became extremely aware of every neighborhood in the city, and I got a lot of exercise," he says. This exercise came in handy when he did the Avon Walk for Breast Cancer at the end of the month.
All of the money Zarlengo saved and raised went towards the Avon Walk. He donated $900 of what he saved, raised almost $3,500 altogether for the cause. His team was able to raise almost $16,000.
His frugal month was a challenge, but Zarlengo gained something invaluable. "At first, there were a few things that I wanted and that I missed ... but after a while, I really felt free from not spending money on retail and other programs," Zarlengo, who is wearing a "Save Second Base" breast cancer t-shirt, states.
He adds, "When you're donating to charity, when you're doing good, you feel good. People will go out of their way to help you out ... I just felt really clear and happy. When you're not wasting any thoughts on what to buy next, a lot of other thoughts pop into your head on positive thinking."
He is still taking donations for the Avon Walk on his personal Avon profile page. "I've learned a lot on my way that I hope to keep with me," he says.