Event #8 $100 Holiday Give-Away

Our lucky DC member Leo Margul won the lottery draw and will be spending this years $100 Give Away.

Screen Shot 2014-01-09 at 1.59.42 PM

And now, a word from our sponsor, Leo:

“I know it’s been quite a while since I won the holiday raffle, and I apologize for taking so long to reveal what I’ve done with the winnings. So here it is, in video form!

If you don’t want to watch, I surprised depressed open mic comedians here in LA with some free snacks. I only host a mic once a month, and did this 5 times, so that was 5 months. I also gave a random couple a free dinner and some other folks free ice cream. Then I donated to St. Anne’s (http://www.stannes.org/) and organization in LA that helps at-risk women and their families.

Thank you for your patience and the funds to make this possible Dollar Collective!”

Thanks Leo!

Event #7 Random Envelope Give Away

With this event, we decided to leave ten random envelopes around public places (buses, libraries, etc.) in Vancouver and Los Angeles, with various amounts of money left inside for strangers. Denominations included $5, $10, and $20, for a total of $120.00. We are also hoping to hear back from the stranger on how they went about spending the money…

Envelope, Message and Money

envelopeNOTE 2012-12-09 16.33.52

Inside books at Vancouver Public Libraries

2012-12-11 17.29.50 2012-12-11 16.54.54

everythingbook flowerBook

Riding buses on Vancouver’s Public Transport (#44 and #84)

2012-12-09 19.32.05

2012-12-09 17.08.24

DC does LA


Intelligentsia Cafe in Los Angeles


Sadly, no one ever replied!

Event #6 Dollar-Docember?

In process…

For 55 days ($1 a day), and in the spirit of Movember, the DC is sponsoring Mitch Ballentine to let his freak flag facial hair grow. He will be growing his beard or moustache for the rest of 2012. The money will go towards a cause of his choice.



Event #5 Mental Health/Yoga Mat Give Away

EVENT #5: Yoga Mat Give-Away

The fall season is off to an excellent start! The tree is thriving and blog is bursting with new photos. I would like to build on this momentum by presenting a new opportunity for the collective.

I propose we invest approx $100 to buy the Richmond Hospital Psychiatry ward proper yoga mats. Currently, the occupational therapist leads a daily stretch, but the benefits are limited due to lack of equipment. Since stretching is the often the only exercise the patients get in a day, I think we have a real opportunity to make an impact! (The mats would be a permanent donation to the ward.)

Thanks, DC!

Note: If you have a yoga mat in good condition that you wish to donate or know where to find a good deal, please let me know. Another note: I’m in the process of coordinating a volunteer yoga teacher to put those mats to good use!

Note: The DC did not provide any money for this event, as our member Frances Dobrzanski collected enough mats through donations and collections.

Event #4 Plant-a-Tree

The roots of the Dollar Collective grew a bit deeper this week with the addition of a new member of the Collective – a brand new Acer pseudoplatanus brilliantissimum (maple tree). We picked up the little buddy from KJM Gardens in Southlands, and thanks to our friends at KJM we received 30% off (Total $: Tree + Manure = $93.29). Thank you, Jordan.


( Jordan with KJM Gardens / the bill)

The planting



Final words: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2KuxBf_pPTE&feature=youtu.be

Acer pseudoplatanus brilliantissimum’s new home is at Point Grey Road Park (Right off Trutch on Point Grey Road). When you have the chance, drop by and say hi.

Event #3 Parking Meter Fairy

This event we decided to give away $35 to pay for a strangers parking ticket, and use the remaining money ($15) to help feed parking meters that had ran out. Seems simple enough, but this event was poorly executed. After feeding the parking meters I was informed by a few people that they were not in fact ‘empty’ but that they had been paid via a smartphone and were not actually in danger of any parking ticket. FAIL. The $35 parking ticket part went almost equally as poorly. After many outings with different DC members I finally came across a bunch of cars with tickets. One car was selected and the envelop and money was placed on the windshield.  I stuck around to film it, but decided not to approach the recipient of the money, for reasons unknown. It was very, very poorly documented. See below for a glimpse of the action.

[money and cards]

[pumping the meter with 50 cents]


[finally a whole street full of parking tickets]

[our lucky* winner]

You can check out  1 second of the event on the link below. The money/envelop was placed on the windshield and I waited around for the driver to return. The total video was about 90 seconds long, and is probably one of the most boring and pointless youtube videos ever created.  I was pretending to read my book, with one hand on the camera, as I tried to zoom in for a reaction. Turns out I completely missed everything, as a result of pretending to read my book and not actually focusing on what I was filming. I did however get to watch her as she opened the envelop and pulled out the money. She was very weirded out and confused. She did a full circle look around then jumped in her car.


Hopefully next time we can bring a film crew. Or at least someone who knows how to operate a camera.

Here is the lucky* winner’s response:

I – yes ME – I was the “lucky” recipient of the $35 for my parking ticket! I was so thrilled and it’s too bad you weren’t able to capture my full reaction on the video. It ruins your day getting a ticket so it completely made my day when I saw the envelope and realized what was inside. If you were filming from the other side, you would have seen a huge smile (while still confused) and I did look around to see if the responsible party was still present. When I got in my car I immediatley called a friend and told her about it and she looked up the website so it was only then that I fully understood what was going on. I have told EVERYBODY I know and run into about this. So please don’t think of this event as a failure – perhaps only your filmin skills haha.
Thank you so much!

Event #2 Kiva 2 Kiva

This month we gave our purse of ~$50 to Kiva. When you think about it, The Dollar Collective is a bit like a mini-Kiva. We’re sort of a micro-micro-loaner.  If you’re unfamiliar with Kiva, basically it’s a organization that collect micro-loans from around the world and helps finance smaller/independent entrepreneurs throughout underpriviliged parts of the world, like Rwanda, Peru, Detroit, etc.

This week we drew a random DC member, who then got to hand select one $25 loan of their choosing. With the remaining $25, we all nominated and voted for one other $25 loan.

Michael Cranston, our lucky winner, decided on Savoern’s Group in Columbia. Nice work, Michael, way to go! Savoern’s group is now fully funded!

Check out Savoern’s Group here: http://www.kiva.org/lend/388171

With the remaining $25, it was a close vote between Amer (Lebanon) and Ahrorkul (Tajikistan). In the end Ahrorkul, the baker, came out on top by three votes. Ahrorkul the baker was nominated by Martin De Bakker (note: no conflicts of interest were declared). Thanks for voting, everyone.

Good luck, Ahrorku! http://www.kiva.org/lend/389548

Event #1 Perfect Strangers



Valentines, possibly the most sacred and genuine holiday event of the year, is a time to express your love… to a complete stranger. Celebrating our launch and first event, we, the dollar collective, went to a random restaurant to pay for an unsuspecting and affectionate young couple’s Valentines dinner.

First, our assistant, Francesca, drew to see which DC member gets to perform the act.

The Event:

[jump to 3min to skip the preamble-ramble]

Perfect Strangers:


I received an email the following day from Dan (I’m pretty sure he’s the one on the right)…

Hey Dan,

It’s the other Dan from the Rumpus Room last night (thanks again, by the way!)

 Anyways, I just wanted to let you know that once you guys do a few more of these and have a few stories to tell, you should definitely do a media push. It’s a great story that could be picked up by a few outlets in the City. Doerthe works at OpenFile (I think you have her card) and I’m at Citytv, so feel free to contact us if you have a press release you want to send out.

 Good luck with this adventure. Doerthe and I are still thinking of how we can pay our $50 forward…will keep you posted.