Most people treat themselves on their birthday, but one woman sought out a greater cause with “30KBy30,” an initiative to feed 30,000 people in need by the time she turned 30 years old. Lauren Puryear, a mother and the founder of the volunteer organization For Love of Others, recently achieved her goal — and she was able to do so with the help of extreme couponing.
Last September when Puryear used coupons to feed the hungry, she told NJ.com that she could feed as many as 150 people on $20.
"I started couponing for food items like spaghetti, meatballs, and I was [often] able to get the items for free or for little to no money," she said. "There are coupons in the Sunday paper, or online that you can print ... so I collect as many as I can, match them to the store and that is how I am able to get the items for free.”
For the past few months, Puryear and her organization have delivered food to unsheltered residents, shelters, and other human service programs, Scary Mommy reported. They have even provided uncooked meals to families and weekend meals to children in schools.
According to Puryear, both the 30KBy30 initiative and For Love of Others were inspired by her late grandmother.
“[My grandmother] always taught us to help other people and to love other people,” she told Scary Mommy. “I know that she would want me to carry on her legacy.”
Although Puryear has already reached her goal, she says she plans on continuing the effort.
“I will keep on feeding until then and see what number I can get up to,” Puryear said. “Maybe 300,000!”
Puryear says she’s not stopping at “30KBy30” — she already has a new initiative in the works.
“During my experiences traveling to different cities, I saw that we were not just feeding the homeless,” Puryear said. “We were also providing meals for the everyday working American who is living at or below the poverty line, so I am starting a new initiative called Push Past Poverty, where I will aim to educate those in need on how to rise above the poverty line by utilizing community resources, coupons, and other tools.”