Weird things you can donate for money in Canada may sound strange, but there are opportunities out there to make some cash by giving away items you no longer need.
From donating plasma to selling your hair, read on to learn about some of the most unusual—and sometimes lucrative—things you can donate for money in Canada.
#7 Weird Things You Can Donate for Money in Canada
1. Your skin
Post-surgical skin donation exists, but it’s primarily a selfless act as financial benefit is uncommon.
Renting out body space for advertising, though a less traditional path, provides a compensated approach.
Donating plasma is one of the more common ways to earn extra income in Canada by essentially donating parts of your body.
Plasma contains proteins that help clot blood and is used to make various lifesaving medical treatments.
You can donate plasma up to twice per week, with the potential to earn a few hundred dollars per month.
The process takes about an hour each visit and the plasma itself is replenished by your body fairly quickly.
Here’s a quick rundown:
- How it works: Plasma is extracted from your blood using an automated process called plasmapheresis. The red blood cells are returned to you afterward.
- Who can donate: Generally healthy adults age 18-65 who meet weight and other requirements.
- Compensation: Earn up to $60 per donation, paid either cash or added to a prepaid debit card. The amount varies by plasma collection center.
While uncommon side effects like dizziness can occur, plasma donation is considered very safe overall when done properly.
Believe it or not, sperm is another bodily fluid you can get paid for donating in Canada.
Sperm banks compensate eligible donors who help provide sperm used for fertility treatments like artificial insemination.
Requirements vary by sperm bank, but here are some key details if you’re considering sperm donation:
- How it works: After getting qualified, visit a sperm bank to provide a semen sample via masturbation onsite. Samples are examined, frozen, and quarantined for 6 months before distribution to recipients.
- Who can donate: Requirements typically include age 18-45, good health, no STD history, proper semen motility/count.
- Compensation: Earn up to $150 per usable sample, with potential for thousands per year via regular donation. Payment method varies by bank.
While it may sound strange, sperm donation provides an opportunity to earn extra income while helping couples facing fertility struggles.
Just be prepared for an extensive screening process beforehand.
If you have long, healthy hair and are looking for some quick cash in Canada, hair donation may be an option.
Organizations like Locks of Love use donated human hair to create free or low-cost wigs for children experiencing medical hair loss.
While not exactly a direct money-maker, some hair donation programs do offer compensation.
Here’s what to expect:
- How it works: Grow your hair out until it reaches the minimum length requirements (often 10+ inches), then cut it and mail it into an organization like Locks of Love. Hair that is dyed/bleached or otherwise very processed is usually not accepted.
- Who can donate: People of all ages with sufficiently long and healthy hair. Specific requirements depend on the organization.
- Compensation: Locks of Love itself does not pay, but some wig charities offer gift cards or small cash donations around $5-10 per ponytail.
So while you won’t get rich, hair donation can tidy up your split ends while supporting a good cause.
Just be sure to meet length and condition expectations first.
5. Breast Milk
You may be able to earn some money by donating or selling your extra breast milk in Canada.
While technically illegal to sell in Canada, breast milk remains highly valued.
Here’s what to know if you want to provide yours to others:
- How it works: Pump and store milk according to storage guidelines. Donate directly or sell via sites matching providers with buyers. Get screened beforehand if selling.
- Who can donate: New moms with extra milk they want to donate/sell.
- Compensation: Official milk banks don’t pay for donations, but you may find buyers offering $1-2 per ounce informally online.
Of course, the FDA recommends against casual selling or buying due to health precautions.
But in Canada, direct donations aren’t illegal.
If you go that route, ensure proper storage/handling and get screened for buyers’ safety.
This list of weird things you can donate for money in Canada is not complete without this.
Women can also donate eggs to fertility clinics helping would-be parents conceive.
It’s a commitment, but pays very well for the time involved. If interested, expect the following:
- How it works: Take medication to sync menstrual cycles, complete a cycle of egg-stimulating hormone injections, undergo egg retrieval. Freeze for up to a decade before eggs get fertilized and implanted.
- Who can donate: Typically women age 21-29 who pass rigorous health screens.
- Compensation: Earn an average of $10,000 per donation cycle. Very time-consuming but pays extremely well.
Egg donation has risks like fertility issues or ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome.
So weigh the pros and cons, but know it could earn you substantial sums if proceeding carefully while helping hopeful parents-to-be.
7. Creative Works
Tapping into your creative talents can also generate some money by essentially “donating” your works to interested buyers.
While you won’t just give it all away, pricing creatively can help your work sell while benefitting buyers.
Consider these options:
- Stock Photos/Videos: Sell royalty-free media through stock sites. Earn based on downloads.
- Graphic Design Templates: Create templates for resale on design marketplaces.
- Collectables: Mass produce artwork, toys, decor and sell on consignment. Earnings based on sales.
You set the rules and pricing, buyers benefit from unique creations at affordable rates.
Get your work out there this way without relying solely on donations.
What can I donate for money at 18?
While there are certainly options for donating your time and skills at 18, your age may restrict options for directly donating biological materials like blood or plasma for money in many regions. However, there are other ways you can contribute for monetary compensation:
Selling plasma: While plasma donations are permitted in some areas to adults at 18, regulations and age requirements vary by country and region. Research plasma donation centers near you to confirm eligibility and compensation specifics.
Clinical trials: Participating in clinical trials can offer compensation for your time and commitment. These trials involve testing new medications or treatments, and eligibility requirements depend on the specific study. Be sure to thoroughly understand the risks and benefits before participating.
Sperm or egg donation: Sperm and egg donation for fertility clinics can offer significant compensation, but extensive screening and eligibility criteria apply. This decision involves personal and ethical considerations, so careful research and informed consent are crucial.
Surveying and market research: Participating in online surveys or focus groups can earn you small financial rewards. Platforms like Prolific, Respondent, and UserTesting connect participants with researchers needing opinions and feedback.
Freelancing: If you have valuable skills or talents, offering freelancing services on platforms like Upwork, Fiverr, or Freelancer can be a great way to earn income. This could involve anything from writing and editing to graphic design, programming, or virtual assistance.
Content creation: Building a following on social media platforms like YouTube, Twitch, or Instagram can eventually lead to revenue through advertising, sponsorships, or brand deals.
Remember, your safety and well-being are paramount.
Always research thoroughly before engaging in any potentially risky activities or transactions. Consider consulting with professionals or trusted advisors before making significant decisions.
In addition to these options, remember that volunteering your time and skills can also be rewarding and impactful.
Many organizations rely on the support of young people to carry out their missions.
Where can I donate blood for money in Canada?
While the act of donating blood itself is a rewarding and life-saving gesture, selling blood for money is illegal in Canada.
Both Canadian Blood Services and Héma-Québec, the two national blood agencies, operate entirely on volunteer donations.
This approach helps maintain a safe and ethical blood supply for all Canadians.
However, there are options if you’re interested in plasma donation, a similar process where only the liquid portion of your blood is collected:
Paid Plasma Donation:
- Canadian Plasma Resources: This private company operates centers in several provinces and offers compensation for plasma donations. They emphasize that compensation acknowledges the time and commitment, not the plasma itself. The amount can vary, but typically ranges up to $70 per donation.
- Héma-Québec: In Quebec, Héma-Québec operates its own plasma donation program with financial compensation.
Important things to remember:
- There are eligibility requirements for plasma donation, which are similar to those for blood donation. These include age, weight, health history, and lifestyle factors.
- Paid plasma donation may not be suitable for everyone due to potential side effects or health risks. It’s crucial to consult a healthcare professional before donating.
- While both options offer compensation, plasma donation should primarily be motivated by the desire to help others in need.
Here are some resources for further information:
- Canadian Blood Services: https://www.blood.ca/en
- Héma-Québec: https://www.hema-quebec.qc.ca/index.en.html;jsessionid=FE1CA6BE48A3561390FCF292DAC8D161
- Canadian Plasma Resources: https://giveplasma.ca/
I hope this clarifies the situation in Canada regarding blood and plasma donation.
Remember, while financial incentives might exist for plasma donation, the value placed on saving lives through these donations is far greater.
While bizarre in some instances, the above are legit ways to donate or resell what your body or talents produce for cash in Canada:
- Plasma – Earn up to $60 per session donating blood plasma up to twice weekly.
- Sperm – Get paid around $100-150 per viable sperm sample at a local sperm bank.
- Hair – Donate hair over 10 inches to organizations providing free wigs to kids. May get a small gift card.
- Breast Milk – Informally donate or sell milk. Buyers may pay ~$1-2 per ounce if selling.
- Eggs – Undergo an egg donation process through a fertility clinic for ~$10,000.
- Creative Works – Sell reproducible works like templates, photos and collectables for passive income.
So if you want to put your spare resources to use and make some money in the process, add these to your bucket list!