Helpful Hints for Living on the Stipend


This list was brainstormed by DASCorps members during the 2010 PSO.

Health and Wellness

• Get a bike
• Bikes not Bombs:
• Boulder, CO has a community bicycle webpage with a comprehensive list of local bike shops
• walk to work
• ask about reduced rates at local YMCA
• Peoples’ acupuncture
• Aesthetician/Beauty school students offer reduced rates for massages, haircuts, facials, etc.
• Dental schools students similarly offer reduced rates for services (sign up early)
• Health food stores have on-site doctors who do consultations
• P90X workout plan (share workout)
• cheap prescription eyewear:
• Planned Parenthood

Living Space

• Share internet
• Wireless extender (pigtail)
• Free and cheap stuff
• free sections on local Craigslist page
• community drives
• Time exchange
• Community bulletin boards
• Bulk trash nights
• Thrift stores
• Cinderblocks and wood furniture
• Electric blanket
• Heating co-op
• Shrink-wrap windows
• Heating bill budget plan
• St. Vincent de Paul emergency aid for utilities


• Garden, community garden
• Volunteer for food (at farm, etc.)
• Food not Bombs:
• Farmers’ markets will often double food stamps
• Cheap prices at farmers’ markets right before closing
• Volunteer at co-op
• Canning: Ball Blue Book of Canning
• Befriend Starbucks employees
• Health food stores on delivery day
• Dumpster diving
• Federal share program
• Food banks (staff will also know other places to get cheap food)
• Project Bread:
• Buy with me:
• Groupon:
• Cheapeats
• Potlucks
• Canned foods
• Fishing


• Find listservs for free stuff to do
• Young nonprofits professional:
• VISTA Campus
• Couchsurfing:
• Four Square:
• Meetup:
• Skill share networks
• Art Walk (free museum nights/ open studio nights)
• University lectures
• Public library
• Reading groups/ book clubs
• Public access/ community radio
• Volunteer

Budget Ideas

Mint (free through Quicken)
• Former VISTA has established doc template that VISTAS can access to create budget-related strategies