Thursday, December 30, 2010

support our troops

Whether in peacetime or in war, no matter what generation we are a part of, or which era we live in, the American military will always be a huge part of our lives and our culture.  The brave men and women who choose to serve their country and preserve the safety and freedom of people around the world deserve our love, respect, and support.  With that, today (even though the holidays are past, I feel very strongly that this is important no matter what time of year) I bring you a couple of charities that will help to support our brave soldiers.

First of all, just about every American has heard of the USO.  Since 1940, the USO, a nonprofit, congressionally chartered, private organization (not part of the U.S. government, btw), has been helping troops serving in combat, their families, our wounded warriors and their families, and families of the fallen. They rely on the generosity of individuals, organizations and corporations to support its activities. A donation to the USO can help the troops make a holiday phone call back home for free, bring all the things that remind them of home to the front lines thanks to USO2GO, and give them some much-needed comfort and a place to relax at USO centers right there in the war zone.  That's not all...

The USO has a heart-wrenchingly awesome program called United Through Reading where service men and women simply read a book aloud while being recorded on DVD for their child, then the DVD and book are mailed to the child and family back home.  Seeing firsthand how difficult it can be for soldiers to be away from their growing children and how much the kids miss their parents when they're gone, I just love the idea of this program.   Check out all the programs you can support with a donation to the USO.

One of the most important programs I think the USO sponsors that I would also like to highlight is the USO Wounded Warrior Program which has all sorts of facilities and programs to support our soldiers injured in the line of duty.  Look at all the different ways a donation to Operation Enduring Care can help our wounded warriors.

{Until tomorrow, Dec. 31, any gift you make to the USO will be matched by a generous supporter, dollar-for-dollar (up to $350,000).} - offer expired

I would also like to tell you about another organization helping wounded soldiers pointed out to me by my mom - the mother, daughter, and sister of American soldiers.  Homes for Our Troops is a national non-profit, non-partisan 501(c)(3) organization founded in 2004.  They help those who have selflessly given to our country and returned home with serious disabilities and injuries by raising donations of money, building materials, and professional labor and coordinating the building of homes that provide maximum freedom of movement and the ability to live more independently.  The homes provided by Homes for Our Troops are given at NO COST to the Veterans they serve.

I would like to continue this thread about our military by also recognizing those who have served our country in the past.  Our veterans deserve as much respect as those serving today, though for some reason, as a country, we don't give them the reverence they deserve.

Did you know that there are over 100,000 homeless U.S. military veterans?

Anyone in NYC can recognize them sleeping in subway cars and tunnels, but they exist in every corner of this country. In 2009, the VA finally stepped up their efforts and endorsed the Opening Doors plan to end veteran homelessness in the next five years.  This is a issue, however, that demands all of our IMMEDIATE attention.

Please do not ignore the homeless - even if they scare you. I'm sorry, but their lives are already hard enough without our apathy and judgement. You can always offer them a dollar or some food.  Or, make a donation to a homeless shelter in your neighborhood.  For example, the Manhattan Campus of the VA New York Harbor Healthcare System has several programs in the boroughs to help homeless veterans including shelters, supportive housing, and job training.   They depend on the goodwill of benefactors and volunteers who wish to give something back to America's heroes, so find what you can do to volunteer or give (and it's not just money they need!  You can donate clothes, toiletries, books, and things to make people's lives a little more comfortable!).  There are VA's in every state, so find yours and figure out what you can do to make a contribution.  They took care of us, so let us now take care of them.

Read More

Saturday, December 25, 2010

our gift

To show our committment to making the world a better place, and as a gift to each of you (and, quite frankly, to put our money where our mouth...s...are), Matt and I have made a donation to every charitable organization that I mentioned on this blog.

Many of our friends and family already know that we've made donations in their names as gifts this year, and I hope that a few of you chose to do the same.

We won't be shutting down just because Christmas is over, though.  Matt and I have decided to keep this little philanthropic thread open for as long as their are worthy organizations to support.  And if there's one thing I have learned through this little experiment, it's that there is a whole world of people out there striving to make the world a better place - and we are going to keep trying to do our part.

Wishing you lots of love and peace, allison
Read More

Friday, December 24, 2010

food banks

It's Christmas Eve and I'm here! Better late than never. There were presents to open and tickle fights to have. Still...this is important and I haven't missed a day yet. So, today, I am talking about what is most important to all of us at this time of

One of my most talented musician friends, Katie Thompson, (speaking of great gifts, go and buy this girl's CDs cuz she is seriously fierce) wrote this hilarious song "I love Christmas for the food," and she's not wrong. We ALL love Christmas for the food. But, recently I read these news stories that report a 50% jump in use of food banks since 2006 (up 90% this year! Hello, recession!) but that nearly 60% of the food kitchens and pantries in the city don't have enough food. I am terrible at math, and I even I know that that does not add up.

So help your local food bank this Christmas. People will go there to get their Christmas meal tomorrow, and they need food. They need support. They need volunteers. They need money. They need you. I am going to give you a brief list of the few that I have supported over the years in a second, but the most important thing is to find one in your community and get out and actually do something to help this year. Tonight, tomorrow, or any day of the year. I can not express how important it is that we all do something to help the people around us that need the most basic things - like food. And now, the list:

Detroit peeps - check out Gleaner's Community Food Bank. Last year, Gleaners distributed more than 36 million pounds of emergency food to over 484 partner soup kitchens, shelters and pantries in Wayne, Oakland, Macomb, Livingston and Monroe counties. Of every dollar donated, Gleaners uses 96 cents for food and food programs. One dollar provides three meals for a hungry neighbor.

NYC - this organization actually takes their trucks out into the streets of NYC and rescues food that is still good to help fight hunger in NYC. City Harvest is the world's first food rescue organization, dedicated to feeding the city's hungry men, women, and children.  Donate food or money. all helps.

Everywhere in America - FeedingAmerica can guide you to a local food bank and tell you ways you can help.

Cheers, everyone. And peace on this Christmas.

Read More

Thursday, December 23, 2010

toys for tots

It's only a couple days before Christmas. I assume that everyone has most of their shopping done and presents are under the tree. But there are a few more gifts you can buy this year that will bring a smile to a child in need.

Marine Toys for Tots Foundation, an IRS recognized 501(c)(3) not-for-profit public charity is the fundraising, funding and support organization for the U. S. Marine Corps Reserve Toys for Tots Program. Toys for Tots delivers shiny new toys to needy youngsters at Christmas with a message of hope that will motivate them to grow into responsible, productive, patriotic citizens and community leaders.

There are drop-off locations at Toys 'R Us stores around the country, and thousands of other locations.  Check out the website to find a drop-off location near you.  If you aren't able to donate toys this year, you can always donate money to the Toys for Tots campaign directly to help them continue the work they've been doing since 1991.  Over 96% of donations goes directly toward providing books, toys, and gifts to kids in need.
Read More

Wednesday, December 22, 2010


And now, for another one of my favorite topics, we shall now discuss...SHOES.

We love shoes, don't we?  And we all have way more than we need, that's for sure.  Sadly, there are millions of people - many of them children - around the world that don't have any shoes.  Gah.

You can help by buying shoes! All you have to do is buy a pair of TOMS shoes for yourself or someone else and TOMS One for One movement will give a pair of new shoes to a child in need.  TOMS makes men's, women's, & kid's shoes in all colors and styles.  And its not too late for next-day shipping for Christmas or find a retailer (dude, you can buy them at Whole Foods!)

I've got another idea for you...

Donate your old shoes!  Soles4Souls is a Nashville-based 501(c)(3) that collects shoes from the warehouses of footwear companies and the closets of people like you and then distributes them to people in need, regardless of race, religion, class, or any other criteria.

Send them the leftovers in your closet! Ship your new or gently worn shoes to one of their warehouse facilities or drop them off at one of the participating locations. It’s a great way to recycle the shoes you are not using and it's also a unique and easy way to go green because your shoes won't end up strung over a power line or in a landfill somewhere.

If you just can't help yourself from buying shoes, buy them for someone in need instead! Sponsor a pair of shoes for a man, woman or child in need. It's just $1 for one pair of shoes (minimum of 5 pairs).

You can also help by making a donation that will enable Souls 4 Souls to continue to acquire and distribute thousands of pairs of desperately needed footwear every week. For every $1 you donate today to Soles4Souls, they can provide a pair of shoes to someone in need. You can also honor someone you love with a tribute or memorial donation to Soles4Souls & they'll send a gift announcement card to the recipient informing them that you have made a donation in their name (you’ll receive a receipt for tax purposes).

Read More

news: "Ordinary people, extraordinary giving"

Where my philanthropic people at?  Oh, here they are!  And they're from Rutgers!!!

"Ordinary people, extraordinary giving"
Read More

news: "For microphilanthropist, donations are a part of daily life"

Am I jealous that someone else had this idea first?  Am I upset about having to share the spotlight with some dude from Chicago that's been doing this not just during the holidays, but the whole year???

Hell, no!  I kinda' can't believe there aren't more of us.  Where my philanthropic people at?  Raise your hands.  Change the world.

"For microphilanthropist, donations are a part of daily life"
Read More

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

the actors fund

My dear friend, Matt (hi, Matt!), recently got himself a shiny new job at the Actors Fund. When I learned how proud he was of the organization he's now working for (and considering I spent many years myself on this particular bread line), I wanted to find out if there were ways to help.  And wouldja' lookie there...there are!

The Actors Fund is a nationwide human services organization that helps all professionals in performing arts and entertainment: injured dancers, laid off technicians, sick actors who must chose between buying food or medicine. The Fund is a safety net, providing programs and services for those who are in need, crisis or transition. And right now, a generous donor will match all gifts received by December 31 up to a total of $10,000.

Feed a starving actor this holiday season, won't you?  Make a donation to the Actors Fund.

Read More

Monday, December 20, 2010

the goods

Christmas is coming! And I am nowhere near done with my shopping! *gulp* Good thing I found this awesome website put together by the folks at the Huffington Post.

The Goods is an online store where goods and services for those in need can be purchased in the name of your friends and family members.  Gifts come in three price ranges: under $25, $25 - $50, and over $50. Gift recipients are notified immediately about your gift via an eCard with a personal note, these presents are perfect last-minute stocking stuffers. Plus your gift is tax-deductible.

Your holiday shopping can provide a care package for an American soldier, after-school tutoring for a struggling student, a sleeping bag to a homeless youth, a stuffed toy for a hospitalized child, or help pay the rent of a family in need. With over 100 participating nonprofits, there is a plethora of great gifts in every price range for you to choose from. All the products being sold are from registered 501(c)(3) non-profits. Causecast takes NO FEE out of your donations to nonprofits & (after a 2-3% credit card transaction fee is deducted,) the nonprofit receives ALL of your donation.

Read More

Sunday, December 19, 2010

the shelter pet project

I saw this sad little cartoon advertisement last night and when I got home later and looked up the website, I knew this was going to be my next post.  First, check out the adorable website for The Shelter Pet Project.   The Shelter Pet Project is a movement to help find homes for great pets.  While you're chuckling at the cute talking animals on the website, also check out the wonderful things they are doing to save animals and ways you can get involved.

Most importantly, anybody thinking about getting a pet PLEASE adopt a shelter pet.

If you're looking for a shelter to support, there are literally thousands all over the country that need your help.  I'd like to give an extra-special shout-out to S.A.V.E., A Friend to Homeless Animals, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit shelter and animal welfare organization dedicated to protecting the health and wellbeing of homeless companion animals in the Greater Princeton, NJ area.  My sister-in-law and her husband adopted their dog, Pepper, a year ago and are still hopelessly and helplessly in love with her.  A tax-deductible contribution to SAVE’s Annual Fund directly supports the care and nurturing of the animals in the shelter, and helps ensure that they can give these dogs and cats a second chance for happiness in a new home.

Read More

Saturday, December 18, 2010


Adios, Don't Ask Don't Tell. Don't let the door hit you in your discriminatory policy on the way out!

In honor of the efforts and successes of LGBT advocates around the country today, I present one of my fave organizations, Swish, the most fabulous gay-straight alliance ever that's run by a passionate and dedicated group of volunteers and allies. Another great friend of ours, Sue, is the co-founder and President of this sassy little non-profit that Matt and I are proud to be a part of. Read this beautiful piece my adorable and compassionate husband wrote for Swish about why we support gay marriage.

These guys have done a lot to mobilize straight allies around the country, and they can use help to keep up their hard work. DADT is d-e-a-d, but there is still much work to be done. Make a donation and help support their operations, public awareness, and coalition-building initiatives—including campaigns to engage members, activists, and volunteers around the world. And check them out on Facebook and Twitter.

Read More

Friday, December 17, 2010

the great secret santa

I am so excited about this, you guys. (Nerd alert, I'm just sayin'.)  The Great Secret Santa is a gift exchange amongst your group of Facebook friends where instead of giving each other gifts everything goes to charity.

All you have to do is sign up, choose a charity and when matches are made your secret santa will make a donation in your name to the charity you chose.

They've made it even easier by giving you four non-profits to choose from.  They represent four distinct yet important causes: ridding the world of extreme human poverty, defending the planet, preventing animal cruelty and fighting cancer.

I signed up last night on Facebook.  My information's been entered and I'll be matched with someone at random from my list of friends via email on December 22nd with all the information on my match.

FYI - the charity that I chose is Millenium Promise.  Millennium Promise is the leading international non-profit organization solely committed to supporting the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals to halve extreme poverty by 2015.  Y'all remember that little 18-page baby I delivered to grad school this week?  With a little kiss from kismet, the Millennium Development Goals - randomly - also happened to be the topic of that final research paper.

I love you, Universe.

Do you like Millennium Promise? You don't have to do secret santa to make a direct donation. Your contribution is tax-deductible and will allow Millennium Promise to support some of the poorest communities in Africa with vital services to advance local health, education, infrastructure, agriculture and entrepreneurship.

One more thing.  In another big ol' smooch from the Universe, Millennium Promise has a program called School 2 School that connects classrooms in impoverished communities in Africa to classrooms in the United States. (See why I chose this one now?)  They also sponsor a program called Connect to Learn that I think some of you will like.  Connect To Learn provides scholarships and technology to girls in developing countries so they can improve their lives, and the world around them.  Oh, and Madonna's the spokeswoman.  Told you you'd like it.  Make a donation - it costs us just $2 a day for Connect To Learn to provide tuition, books, supplies and uniforms for each scholarship recipient.

"Let the future say of our generation that we sent forth mighty currents of hope, and that we worked together to heal the world." — The End of Poverty
Jeffrey D. Sachs, President and Co-Founder, Millennium Promise

Read More

Thursday, December 16, 2010

a human right

Merry Christmas!  I got you a satellite!

No, seriously. You can buy a satellite for Christmas. Or Hannukah. Or New Years. Easter. Tuesday. Whatevs.

The company that owns the world's most capable communications satellite has just filed for bankruptcy protection.  The NGO A Human Right wants to buy that satellite and move it over a country (or continent) that could use internet access.  A Human Right believes “equal, universal, uninhibited Internet access is a human right,” so they are trying to raise $150k in order to purchase “the most capable communications satellite put into space” so they can use it to provide poor people (in Papau New Guinea to start and then maybe the whole of Africa) with free Internet service.

Free internet for everyone!!!

If this works the satellite will be used to offer a diminished service for free to everyone.  Then they'll allow telecommunications companies to purchase and re-sell high speed bandwidth because the goal is to not only get everyone online, but also facilitate the growth of an industry & hey...someone's got to pay the bills.  Check out their page on Facebook, too.

Read More

news: "Salvation Army bans Potter, Twilight toys"

Forget Voldemort, the new front line Harry Potter's facing is the Salvation Army.  This Canadian news story details how the Salvation army disposes of donated Harry Potter and Twilight toys rather than re-distributing them to other charitable agencies, but plastic M-16's "are for the 10-year olds."  Hrmm.

Be warned when donating to toy drives this year: muggle toys only.

Read More

Wednesday, December 15, 2010


Care2 is a one-stop shop for helping out causes you love most.  They have a huge online community of cool, caring people just like you finding ways every day to make a difference. How do they do these things they do?  Let me tell you...

First of all, since this is the holiday season and this is about ways to make a difference while holiday shopping, check out Care2 shopping for Gaiam health, wellness, and sustainable living products (they even have an entire fair trade section which I encourage you tree hugging humanity lovers to check out).  When you purchase from the online store, Care2 donates 5% of revenues to leading nonprofits.  You can also send e-cards and each time you do, Care2 saves one square foot of rainforest.

We're saving the WOOOOOORLD, PEEEOPLLLE! (yell it like Oprah.  Go ahead, it's fun.)

They also sponsor click to donate.  Everybody loves those!  Don't you guys love those?  Go do it right now and help children in need or fight cholera or stop violence or whatever cause you support.  OMG look at that face.  Go click!  Click them all!!!

I just saved baby seals.

They also publish news and information about causes; offer tips about living a healthy, green lifestyle; and offer opportunities to advocate for causes.  I, for one, am a huge fan of the Daily Action.  Each day they post a new action on the website for a way to make a difference in the world. Sound familiar?  Great minds.

Another cool thing is that if you sign up, you get "butterfly credits" for taking actions on the website like leaving comments or signing a petition and then you can cash in those credit for good causes. A pencil for a student in Haiti is 500 credits.

Best of all, it's totally, completely, 100% FREE. Now go save a sea turtle.
Read More

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

help Haiti

My friend Angie told me about this organization that has been on the ground helping the people of Haiti since before the devastating January earthquake. In the aftermath of that disaster, KONPAY (which is short for Konbit Pou Ayiti, or "Working Together for Haiti") used their network of partners to raise and effectively disburse more than $150,000 in direct aid, mobilized resources, and managed essential aid distribution.

You can help this focused, grassroots organization today by making a donation to the Haiti Earthquake Emergency Relief Campaign - they need all the help they can get.  There are also a couple of other programs you can support through KONPAY.  You can donate to help buy tents for Haitians displaced by the earthquake.  All proceeds will go toward the purchase of a family-sized tent to provide shelter for one of the hundreds of thousands of Haitians left homeless after this year’s devastating earthquake.  You can donate to Li, Li, Li!, a storybook reading out loud program in Creole for Haiti's children who became homeless or displaced because of the catastrophic January 12, 2010 earthquake.  (That one especially tugs at my heart.  But wait, I'm not done.)  You can also make a general donation to KONPAY through Network for Good.  Check out what your general donations can do here.

And while we're on the subject of Haiti (and because they need SO much help down there), I have another one for you...

Another friend of mine, Jeff, is actually part of an organization building a school in Haiti.  (I have such cool friends, I tell ya'.)  Hands for Haiti is a volunteer-run, registered 501(c)3 non-profit organization providing access to primary and secondary education in Haitian communities by providing basic and economic needs.  100% of donations directly impact the lives of people living in and outside of Cap-Haitien, Haiti.

With a donation to Hands for Haiti, you can provide for a teacher’s salary on a one-time or recurring basis.  You can provide a uniform, tuition and one meal a day for one student.  You can provide a day, a week, or a month's worth of school lunches.  You donate.  Thank you.

Read More

Monday, December 13, 2010

o, christmas tree (by special guest Matt Hooooooban)

My wife, the resident blogger here, will literally drag me across trafficky New York City streets just to walk through the sidewalk Christmas tree stands that start popping up after Thanksgiving. That's how much she loves the smell of Christmas trees. And judging by the smiles on the faces of other people walking through those impromptu glades of pine-scented heaven, she's not alone.

I'm not one to disagree. But being the lily-livered liberal that I am, I can't help myself from wondering these days what environmental price we might be paying in exchange for dressing up all those firs and balsams and pine trees in lights and tinsel.

Unless you're foolish enough to deny climate change, you don't need a lecture from me about the oxygen-producing and carbon-cleansing benefits of trees. (Although, if you do need that lecture, feel free to drop me or Oprallison a line and we'll bring you up to speed rill rill quick.) What you may need, however, are ideas about how to give back.

For those of you who heart New York, the Central Park Conservancy is a great place to start. There is literally no season where the glory of Central Park won't take your breath away, and the good folks at the Conservancy are the reason why. In addition to maintaining the foremost urban park space in the country, the Conservancy also partners with urban park systems throughout the city, the country, and the world to advise on management and fundraising.
In short, they totally rule.

Their donation page offers a spate of options for how you can contribute to the Conservancy, including becoming a member, adopting a Central Park Pal, and tree protection/endowment. The minimum commitment to exclusively endow a tree is $1,000, so it's not for the faint of budget. But any amount will be welcomed as part of the Protect Central Park's Trees effort which, among other things, is helping to repair the damage from violent summer storms the past two years. You can also donate daffodils or tulips as part of Central Park's regular spring planting, which make a fantastic springtime gift.

The Central Park Conservancy store also offers several items whose sale benefits the Conservancy, including the "Imagine" Christmas ornament, which is patterned after the mosaic in the Strawberry Fields section of the Park.

For those looking a little more globally, Trees for the Future is a Maryland-based 501(c)3 organization that helps replant trees in Central America, Africa, and Asia, where rampant logging and deforestation have destroyed animal habitats, eroded once-fertile topsoil, and interrupted the regular recharging of natural aquifers. A tree anywhere helps provide oxygen and carbon dioxide everywhere, so it's good for all of us.

One last thing for the people in NYC. When the holidays are over and the wrapping paper has all been recycled, the New York City Sanitation Department will be collecting Christmas trees for recycling and mulching. Curbside collections will take place between January 4 and January 15. If you live near the City (or if you're feeling particularly industrious and don't mind coating your car in dried pine needles), you can also bring your tree to the NYC Parks & Recreation Mulchfest on Saturday and Sunday January 9 and 10 between 10am and 2pm. More details on that here.

Read More

Sunday, December 12, 2010

community water solutions

So, clearly I have a thing for water.  I mean, the human body is made up of about 70% water, so it comes as no surprise.  But there are lots and lots of people in the world who do not have access to safe, clean drinking water.  It seems amazing that in this day and age that would still be an issue, and yet.

I'd like to introduce you to another great organization providing safe, clean water to people in the developing world.  Community Water Solutions is a non-for-profit social enterprise that partners with rural communities in developing countries to establish sustainable water treatment businesses.  It's a small organization run by a couple of people like you and me.  I actually met them last year at a Christmas party and was so inspired to hear about the work they are doing in Ghana that I am still trying to find ways to support their work.

CWS relies on grants and donations in order to provide each village with the capital needed to start their business, and you can help by making a donation.  Every year, CWS also has volunteers who travel to Ghana to set up water businesses.  You can support these volunteers by making a donation to support the CWS fellows.

You can also make a donation to CWS through, but let me tell you a little about Globalgiving before you sign up there.  It is a very cool site where you can select any number of small projects around the globe to support.  Globalgiving is like a virtual marketplace for aid.  They are a registered 501(c)3 organization, and for their services they receive a nominal 15% fulfillment fee.  That means that, normally, less than 100% of your donation is going to your chosen charity.  Now, you can choose to make an incremental contribution at checkout to cover this fee and ensure that 100% of their donation goes to your project. In the end, an average of 90% of all funds donated getting to the grassroots project(s) selected, so that's good...I just wanted you to be aware.

If you like Globalgiving, they also have gift cards available that you can purchase as a gift for someone else to choose their own project to support.  This is cool and I like.

Read More

news: "Getting Kids to Care"

It’s never too early to start teaching kids about giving back and helping those less fortunate.  In fact, the earlier you teach 'em, the more fundamental it will become in their lives.  Start 'em young, that's what I say.  Read this article to find out how.

Getting Kids to Care
Read More

Saturday, December 11, 2010

christopher & dana reeve foundation

I don't think most of us know very many people living with paralysis.  But that doesn't diminish the fact that there are a lot of brave people who do it every day.  And for every paralyzed person, there is a team of courageous caretakers.  They deserve all the support they can get.  Check this out:

The Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation have put out a 2010 Holiday Gift Guide for People Living with paralysis.  These guys are awesome.  They have thought of all these cool ways to normalize and make life comfortable for people living with paralysis.

So you don't know anyone who can benefit from gifts like these?  The Reeve Foundation is an incredible organization dedicated to curing spinal cord injury by funding innovative research, and improving the quality of life for people living with paralysis through grants, information and advocacy.  You can help them in their work by making a donation directly to the Foundation.  You can also shop for a cure and buy products for which the proceeds will benefit the Reeve Foundation.

And, as per yoozh, you can help raise awareness by becoming a fan on Facebook or following the Reeve Foundation on Twitter.

Look at that, you guys...Superman is still finding ways to save people.

(This post is in memory of Art Hearron.)
Read More

Friday, December 10, 2010

feedback friday

It's Friday...and you know what that means, don't you?  (*a million different answers most of which contain some type of libation.*) (okay, realistically, 15 different answers, but a girl can dream, can't she?)  It means it's feedback time, peeple! And that means I want to hear from you.

Are you reading?  Are you liking?  And, most importantly...

Are you donating?

I know already and am delighted that, at least in some small way, this is working.  I heard from my friend, Julie, that she and her husband are sending out electronic holiday cards this year and donating the money they would have spend instead to an animal rescue group.  My husband came home one day and showed me that he had texted PIZZA to 90999 to make a donation to St. Judes.  I've gotten handfuls of suggestions and questions about various charities and organizations.

Also, I would like to acknowledge that bunch of darling people who have re-posted my blog on their Facebag pages in support of this here little project o' mine. I couldn't be more grateful.

But my insatiable inner-Oprah wants more.  Please to leave a comment and tell me about things you are doing this holiday season to make the world a better place.  Tell me about charities or causes you want to see featured here.  Tell me about donations you've been inspired or plan to make this holiday season.  Tell me to shut up.  (That last one will make me a little mad, just so you know.)

I look forward to hearing what you guys have to say!  love, allison
Read More

Thursday, December 9, 2010

friends of maiti

Watch this video.  I cried.  CNN's Hero of the Year for 2010 is Anuradha Koirala, a woman in Nepal who rescues girls from human trafficking.  She’s rescued more than 12,000 girls from sex slavery and thanks to her recognition as a CNN hero, Koirala will receive $125,000 to continue her work with girls in Nepal. You can help her continue her work, too.

If you watched the video, you have already learned a little bit about the refuge that Koirala runs in Nepal for rescued girls.  Friends of Maiti Nepal is a non-profit all-volunteer organization dedicated to addressing the human rights crisis of girl sex-trafficking through prevention, interception, rescue and rehabilitation of victims; and criminal prosecution of perpetrators.  Get it.

Help her.  If karma exists, she deserves it.  And a Nobel Peace Prize.  You can at least make a donation.

As always, Facebook and Twitter it up, y'all.  Let's show this hero some love.
Read More

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

no kid hungry

I had a very proud moment last week as a social worker watching the House of Representatives pass the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010 - a bill that I had been advocating for since starting my internship at the United Way this September.  The bill provides more federal funding and changes the standards for nutrition to ensure children eat well at school. With childhood obesity skyrocketing and education performance backsliding, it could not have come at a better time.  The bill also provides free school lunch automatically for low-income children who qualify.  Nearly 17 million American children do not have enough to eat.

In another effort to fight hunger, I introduce to you the No Kid Hungry campaign run by Share Our Strength that is working hard to make sure no kid in America grows up hungry.  If you must buy kid's toys for Christmas, how about buying products that give a little back?  5% of proceeds from the sale of select gifts at The Land of Nod (groovy kids toys by Crate and Barrel) is donated to No Kid Hungry.

(I know that 5% doesn't seem like much, but anyone who does their shopping at Crate and Barrel knows that can add up pretty quickly.  And according to the campaign, just $1 can help connect a child to 10 healthy meals. So...)

And if you have no need for plastic fried eggs this year, you can also make a donation directly to No Kid Hungry.  And if you don't have need for a miniature toy shopping cart or cash to donate, you can always help raise awareness by checking out the campaign and spreading the good word on Facebook, Twitter, your blog, you decide.

Read More

© goodiegoodie, AllRightsReserved.

Designed by Pie a la Mode Productions