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Money for Jam – and for a good cause

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The festive season is not only a time for spending time with friends and family, it is also a time to reflect on the past year and make plans for moving forward. ANDRE HUGO reflects on how jobbers on the M4JAM microblogging platform have refused to give up and ended up making ends meet.

The festive season is a time for giving. It’s about sharing and seeing the smiles on people’s faces as they open a gift and take a moment to enjoy time with their families and loved ones.

It’s also a time for reflection, for acknowledging the year gone by, to look back at the challenges that we have faced and think about how we will move forward. And for us at M4JAM (Money for Jam) it’s a time to acknowledge those that have taken ownership of their own lives and actively worked to improve their lifestyles – even in the smallest ways.

Many of our jobbers on the M4JAM microjobbing platform have shown this spirit though the course of the year.

Here are some wonderful stories of our jobbers:

As a parent, the joy of teaching your child to ride a bike and hearing them shout with glee when they master it is priceless. One mother wanted to buy her daughter a bicycle and she worked hard to make more than R500 to do just this.

Of course, there are some other practical stories that we hear everyday. Some jobbers have shared how using M4JAM to make that little bit extra by doing easy work, has helped them to buy food and other essentials – including half a week’s worth of groceries. For others, it’s helped pay for a tank of petrol when the price shot up earlier in the year.

Then there are the stories of jobbers using their extra cash to help pay for medical bills. We all know we can’t plan for illness and when you or your loved one suddenly gets sick, knowing that you can pay for a doctor is a huge sense of comfort.

We had another jobber who made over R1000 doing jobs for TomTom while going about his daily routine. He will be able to breathe a little easier at this budget-challenging time of year.

The list goes on.

One jobber used his money to help pay the rent. Another young man uses his earnings to buy his younger brother’s school lunch, while a mother is able to afford food and clothes for her children. Others have paid back a small portion of their loans, paid for textbooks and been able to contribute towards their fees for university. And when the essentials are taken care of, some jobbers save their extra cash for a ‚Äòrainy day’, while others are using their earnings to be able to go out to eat with family and friends, go to the movies, save towards a well-deserved holiday or even buy a bus ticket to visit a long-distance love interest.

No matter what your income or needs are, a bit of extra cash is always welcome to make life easier – especially at the end of a long year. We have heard stories of M4JAM jobbers helping those in need: like one jobber who used his earnings from one of his jobs to buy a loaf of bread to help someone in need in the aftermath of a shack fire, and another using any excess money after saving to provide food for someone in need.

All these stories prove that change can happen one micro job at a time. Small steps can have a big impact. And being part of the microjobbing community doesn’t have to end when the festive season is over – it’s a year-round way of changing lives, one job at a time.

* Andre Hugo Co-founder at M4JAM (Money for Jam)

* Follow Gadget on Twitter on @GadgetZA

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