Pocket Money Changes - it's a new idea I had today that I would like you to help with.
At the moment, for many of us, money is tight. Luxuries have been cut right back and we're all living a little bit more carefully, trying to make our cash stretch.
For some this means that the little pleasures they enjoy have to stop - and for some those little pleasures are everything, so losing them is hard.
I had an idea after talking with a good friend, who's story I'll tell you in a moment, that together we could make a big difference to people, with just a small kindness.
Pocket Money Changes is the result of a brainstorming session with my husband.
I can't change the world - I can't change everything - but with your help I can change someone's day, their week. We can change someone's situation from losing something simple that they love to getting to enjoy that something simple.
I'm not sure how well I'm explaining - so let me tell you my friend's situation.
She and her husband have three children, the youngest is only a few months old and has had some health problems, so they've had a rough few months.
Her husband works but doesn't earn big money, and she is a full time Mum. It's a fairly typical situation and, like most of us, they're careful with their money and budget for small pleasures.
One of those small pleasures is a dance class for their eldest child, a gorgeous, gentle four year old boy who, for the sake of protecting their identity some, I'll call Jack.
He goes to his dance class every week and is happier there than anywhere else, and the whole family get great pleasure from this happiness, and from seeing him bloom doing something he loves. Jack is a sweet, shy boy who can be overwhelmed by crowds and loud groups, but blossoms in his dance class.
The class is very inexpensive, costing just two fifty a week - which the family have included in their weekly budget. Something so small which makes such a difference to their son's life and self worth, his happiness and theirs as a family.
This week a problem came up.
The dance class are having a show - which the gorgeous Jack is VERY excited about. He can't wait to dance in front of all his family with the others in the class and show them all the things they've learned. He's practicing like crazy and talking about nothing but the show. The whole family are excited about seeing the show, and it's given them all something to look forward to after a tough couple of months.
But today at the class they were told that they'll need to buy a costume for the show.
They can't afford it.
The costume is thirty seven pounds - which when money is tight is impossible to find. They might have managed another month, but this month they have to MOT and tax the family car, which can't be put off, and that means that they quite literally don't have thirty seven pounds.
They asked if Jack could just wear his usual dance class outfit - but he can't. If he doesn't have the costume he can't be in the show. If he isn't going to be in the show then he can't go along to the classes for a few weeks because he'd be left out.
I could have a big old rant about how unfair that is, and how they should let him dance in his dance class clothes - but that isn't going to help.
What MIGHT help is finding the thirty seven pounds so that Jack can keep doing his class, can be in the show, and can proudly show off what he's learned to his family, who are bursting to see him on stage.
I can't afford to pay thirty seven pounds for Jack's costume - and that's where I'm really hoping you come in. That's what I want Pocket Money Changes to do.
None of us, realistically, have thirty seven pounds that we don't need right now. But I bet there's at least thirty seven of us who can afford to donate ONE pound to help the family, so that the lovely little man can dance in his show, in his fancy costume.
You see at the top of that side bar, over on the right of your screen, a 'Donate' button? That button is the Pocket Money Changes fund - where I'm really, really hoping people will drop their pocket change so we can all pool together and help little Jack to be in his show.
If we can raise thirty seven pounds by Friday Jack will be able to buy his costume - and he and his family will be so, so happy.
It's a small kindness - but it really, really will make such an enormous change.
Please donate your pocket money - and make a change for Jack?
(The donations go to a paypal account I've set up for the Pocket Money Changes fund; I will pay the money directly into my friend's bank when it reaches thirty seven pounds. If someone has a suggestion for a better method in future please let me know - in the meantime I will keep everyone who donates updated with the total and let them know when it has been paid.
If we collect MORE than thirty seven pounds I will donate the excess to charity, not one penny of it will go into my bank or be kept by me.
If you have any friends in a similar situation who you would like to be helped by Pocket Money Changes please let me know - I would like to keep helping people with these small kindnesses so that little faces can smile. This isn't about big gestures, holidays abroad or meeting famous favourites - it's about small, inexpensive kindnesses that will change someone's life.)
I want to add a log here of people's donations so you can all see the total as we go.
I want to keep doing Pocket Money Changes for other people who want a small gift that means a great deal. If you have any friends or family who you know have a similar situation and want to help please email me on firstname.lastname@example.org with the story and reasons. If the help they need is below £100 I want to help.
Thank you all so much xxx I will post a photo of Jack's costume when it arrives.