National Philanthropy Day 2010

Today is National Philanthropy Day and for everyone who gives back, THANK YOU!


National Philanthropy Day is the special day set aside to recognize and pay tribute to the great contributions that philanthropy—and those people active in the philanthropic community—have made to our lives, our communities and our world.


In 2010, the 25th anniversary of National Philanthropy Day, more than 125 communities and 50,000 people around the world will participate in NPD events and celebrations. These events include award ceremonies, galas, luncheons, seminars and other special events. Outstanding donors, volunteers, corporations, foundations, small businesses, youth in philanthropy and others will be honored on NPD in recognition of their work in improving their communities and their world every day.



You are invited to join in the celebration. Use the links on this page to find a local National Philanthropy Day® event in your community and learn more about the importance of giving and volunteerism.


Your giving, compassion and goodwill really do make a difference!

Family Philanthropy – Finding Family Service Projects

We know you’re busy, but it is possible to participate in family service project no matter if you’re short on cash or short on time. You don’t need to start a non-profit or donate millions of dollars to feel like you’re making a difference – even the busiest of us can donate some of our family-fun hours to a good cause. Whether spending time at home, in nature or on vacation, families can get enjoyment – and a dose of social awareness – from simple activities that double as a charitable boost. 
To find a volunteer opp or service project for your family, start here:


      Family Volunteering familycares.org

      Idea List Guide to Family Volunteering idealist.org/kt/familyvolunteer.html

      Doing Good Together doinggoodtogether.org

      The Volunteer Family volunteerfamily.org/


      Kids for Community – Youth Volunteer Opportunities Kidsforcommunity.org

      The Volunteer Family – thevolunteerfamily.org/

      The International Association for Volunteer Effort – www.iave.org/

      PBS Kids – www-tc.pbskids.org/zoom/grownups/action/pdfs/volunteer_guide.pdf

      The Nature Conservancy – nature.org/volunteer/

      Volunteer Spot – volunteerspot.com/

Who among us doesn’t want to give something back?

Dear Friends,

The state of the world’s problems are really hitting home. Everywhere you turn, there’s another story about things going wrong and only getting worse: the global food crisis, the down economy, back-to-back hurricanes, floods, child soldiers in Congo and problems in our own backyards. The list, it seems, never ends. With more than 6 billion people living on planet earth there are bound to be problems. Considerable ones. Luckily, there are solutions. Small, simple, utterly pain-free ways to make a real difference.



As a concerned citizen of the world, I know you want to help. I think every person worries about the current state of things. With all that’s taking place, it seems like the natural thing to do. All of us are looking for change, looking for things we can do to improve the world and make it a safer, happier place for all. We all know we should be doing something to make a difference, but all too often we fold in despair and wonder how one person can really make a dent in all that’s happening?

Perhaps, the biggest challenge we face, is waking up to a new way of giving back: Taking from the resources we currently hold and putting them to good use in a way we can manage.  This can mean anything from donating talents like hairdressing, knitting and nurturing, to donating spare items, like shoes, books and clothes, to making smarter shopping decision and frequenting companies that treat social responsibility as a matter of priority.  

From the products we use, to the places we visit, to the way we invest, there are countless choices to making a better world.   The question I’m presenting today to you, is How Do You Make a Difference?
 Please share your thoughts and stories.  A new story will be featured on Everyday Philanthropist blog, each Tuesday starting in September. The world needs to know about our unsung heroes.  Let’s inspire a world of change!

Share your comments on this blog, Facebook or Twitter.

Be Well,
Nicole Bouchard Boles

Good Move ~ Charity Walks

“ I am only one,

But still I am one.

I cannot do everything,

But still I can do something;

And because I cannot do everything,

I will not refuse to do the something that I can do.”

—Edward Everett Hale

 
 
Sweat for a Cause

Those who aren’t afraid of a little perspiration have been known to don their sneakers and get their bodies moving to raise money for charity. As summer heats up, the season for charity walks gets going.
Charity marathons, bike rides, walks, and other sporting events are the perfect opportunity to use your body, better your health, and raise funds and awareness for some worthwhile causes. Need some inspiration to get involved? These walks across – which all support good causes – will provide just the motivation you need

Asthma: ■■Asthma Walks (lungusa.org)

Breast cancer: ■■Avon Walk for Breast Cancer
(walk.avonfoundation.org) and Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure (ww5.komen.org)

Cancer: ■■Relay for Life (cancer.org)

Mental illness: ■■NAMI Walks (nami.org/walk)

Heart disease: ■■Start! Heart Walk
(americanheart.org/presenter.jhtml?identifier=3053039)
 
Leukemia and lymphoma: ■■Team in Training (teamintraining.org)

Diabetes: ■■Step Out: Walk to Fight Diabetes (stepout.diabetes.org)

Multiple sclerosis: ■■Walk MS (nationalmssociety.org)

Arthritis: ■■Arthritis Walk (arthritis.org)

This is just a starter list. If you don’t have a particular cause in mind but want to participate in a charity marathon, go to aRunningStart.org, CharityMile.com, or Active.com, which list dates, distances, and registration requirements for thousands of events.

Charity Product Pick of the Week: Threads For Thought

Question:  What’s better than a soft, organic cotton tee for style and comfort?

Answer:  One that gives back!  A portion of proceeds from Threads For Thought tees benefits charities like The International Rescue Committee (a global network that provides access to relief, rehabilitation and protection to refugees) and The Natural Resources Defense Council (an environmental action group).



Using sustainable fabrics such as organic cotton and polyester recycled from plastic water bottles to create clothing that is comfortable, beautiful, and socially conscious, Threads for Thought is not only top of environmental preservation, they also infuse important causes and issues into the design of their shirts. 

Comfort Homeless Animals

Even the youngest among us can give back with this fun idea:

If your child is part of the new knitting craze, help her/him knit, quilt, crochet or sew blankets to donate to Hugs for Homeless Animals’ Snuggle Project (snugglesProject.org).  The hand-crafted “snuggles” are given to shelters to help animals feel more secure and comfortable while waiting for a permanent home.

Photo: Snuggles Project

Tickets For Charity

Great things come in a small packages! That’s what I learned today after hearing about TicketsforCharity.com.  The next time you’re looking to score seats for a fabulous event, take a look at this website www.ticketsforcharity.com to access hard-to-find seats and support important causes!

As Laura Bresnahan of Charity Partners, Inc explains,


Tickets-for-Charity believes small incremental donations/actions can really add up to large positive change for charities and foundations. Here is a bit more about our organization:

Working directly with top performing artists from Brad Paisley and John Mayer to U2 and James Taylor & Carole King, Tickets-for-Charity (TFC) makes premium concert and theater seats available (at the same or better price you’ll find elsewhere) to support leading charitable causes. Here’s how it works:

· 100% of the ticket face value goes to the artist and tour


· 100% of the benefit of the donation amount goes directly to partner charities selected by artists and   customers


· We proudly host both artists and partner charities on the TFC  platform for free

· We keep our lights on by charging an industry-standard service fee


TFC offers artists a great way to engage fans with important causes while offering them access to some of the best seats on the house. We also give fans the opportunity to see some of the biggest names in entertainment while benefiting the causes they care about most. We work with a wide variety of charitable organizations that stretches across many different cause areas.

For a snapshot of our work and mission, please feel free to check out this quick video http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mUqBJ9hfAMM or visit our website at http://www.ticketsforcharity.com/ for a complete list of Charitable Sale™ events and partner charities.


Charity Partners is a national fundraising platform dedicated to supporting the world’s most admired charities.
We are proud to partner with the following organizations: The Actors Fund · Artists Against Hunger & Poverty: A Program of WHY · Autism Speaks · Big Brothers Big Sisters of America · Boys & Girls Clubs of America · CARE · Cal Ripken, Sr. Foundation · City Year · Communities In Schools · CureSearch National Childhood Cancer Foundation · Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation · Farm Aid · Feeding America · The GRAMMY® Foundation · Habitat for Humanity International · Jack & Jill Late Stage Cancer Foundation · Jumpstart for Young Children · Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation International · The Leary Firefighters Foundation · The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society · Malaria No More · MusiCares® Foundation · National Center for Missing & Exploited Children · The National Children’s Cancer Society · National Federation of the Blind · Natural Resources Defense Council · Outward Bound · Partnership for a Drug-Free America · Peace Games · Red Sox Foundation · United Way of America · Wildlife Conservation Society · YouthBuild

Day 15 of 30 Days/30 Ways to Give: BLOCK PARENTING

Serving your community—the place where you live and work and where you’ve planted roots—is everyday philanthropy at its most relevant. Because when you serve your community, you serve yourself.

Today’s Give Back Action – Become a Block Parent



Join a Block Parent program in your community and provide a safe haven for children. A child in trouble (whether they’re lost or frightened for any reason) can turn to a Block Parent house (distinguishable by the Block Parent sign placed in your front window). For more information, visit LoveOurChildrenUSA.org. Canadians can find more information at BlockParent.ca.
 
Don’t Forget Our GIVEAWAY!!!

~ This month, Everyday Philanthropist will shine the spotlight on volunteers. Go to our Facebook page to share your personal stories, read firsthand testimonials from current volunteers and be inspired by the “30 Days/30 Ways” tips on how to lend a helping hand.


A prize pack, including signed copies of How to Be an Everyday Philanthropist : 330 Ways to Make a Difference in your Home, Community and World – At no Cost! (Workman, 2009) will be awarded to people doing good across the country.

In addition, you will be featured on Everyday Philanthropist’s blog and may be featured in an upcoming book. Here’s how to enter. Share your personal way of how you like to give back (no matter how grand or slight) at our Facebook Fan Page. Its that easy!


5 Winners will be chosen radomly and contacted after the contest closes on April 30th.


Also: Be sure to follow us on Twitter for more quick tips on giving back

WORLD HEALTH DAY 2010

Today is WORLD HEALTH DAY!

We don’t need a lot of time or money to fight against disease, poverty and other ailments. What we need is knowledge.

Making a difference is so simple, once you’ve got the know-how. “How to be an Everyday Philanthropist: 330 Ways to Make a Difference in you Home, Community and World – At …no Cost!” has all the tools, actions and inspiration you need to make an impact.

How to Be an Everyday Philanthropist shows how just a few small changes to things we are already doing (shopping, cleaning, working, etc.) can make a difference in helping global, national and local charities assist the needy. Each chapter uses a different method of “everyday” philanthropy (such as using your body, your trash, technology, etc.) to solve problems requiring attention. For anyone who wonders, “what can I do?” This book gives you the resources, encouragement and advice you need to take action.
 

As President Jimmy Carter says of the book, “This timely manifesto will serve as a wonderful reminder that everyone can and should try to make a difference. It will inspire confidence that we can help make our world a better place.”
Buy, Borrow or Share a copy of this great book today!
Together, we have the ability and power to create a safer, happier, healthier place for all.

Day 7 of 30 Days/30 Ways ~ KNIT FOR A CAUSE

Even the youngest among us can give back with a little pearl and stitch.

Knitting for a cause can be as simple as creating a winter hat for the homeless or it can involve knitting items to donate to people with cancer or to sell in support of a cause you believe in. Whether you have a special skill that you use in your professional life or a hobby you enjoy in your off-hours, your talents make you uniquely suited for a particular kind of giving—it’s just a matter of finding the right fit.

Today’s Action – Knit for a Cause!

Give Warmth in a War Zone

Founded by a knitter, Afghans for Afghans (afghansforafghans.org) provides hand-knit and -crocheted blankets, mittens, hats, socks, vests, and other garments to the people of war-torn Afghanistan. The organization takes its inspiration from the Red Cross’s old tradition of providing knitted items in times of war and crisis. Visit the organization’s website for details, as well as inspirational photos of volunteers, their creations, and the people who receive them.
 
Comfort an Animal

The Cage Comforter Program (pleasebekind.com) tries to make an orphaned animal’s stay in the shelter a little less traumatizing by replacing the shredded newspaper that usually lines the cages with small handmade comforters. The comforters give shelter animals something cozy to nestle in and aid in their transition to a new home once they’ve been adopted. If your local shelter doesn’t have a Cage Comforter Program, the website has instructions on how to start one.

Clothe a Baby

Clothing is a basic human need that goes unmet for far too many families. Newborns in Need (newbornsinneed.org) assists impoverished families of premature and newborn babies in crisis by distributing donated handmade blankets, quilts, and sleepers. Check out their website for patterns, preemie sizing chart, and donating instructions.

Don’t Forget Our GIVEAWAY!!!


~ This month, Everyday Philanthropist will shine the spotlight on volunteers. Go to our Facebook page to share your personal stories, read firsthand testimonials from current volunteers and be inspired by the “30 Days/30 Ways” tips on how to lend a helping hand.


A prize pack, including signed copies of How to Be an Everyday Philanthropist : 330 Ways to Make a Difference in your Home, Community and World – At no Cost! (Workman, 2009) will be awarded to people doing good across the country.


In addition, you will be featured on Everyday Philanthropist’s blog and may be featured in an upcoming book. Here’s how to enter. Share your personal way of how you like to give back (no matter how grand or slight) at our Facebook Fan Page. Its that easy!


5 Winners will be chosen radomly and contacted after the contest closes on April 30th.


Also: Be sure to follow us on Twitter for more quick tips on giving back

Pepsi Refresh Project

If your a fan of the book, How to Be an Everyday Philanthropist, than you’ve likely discovered some of the more than 300 – time and budget-friendly – ways to make a difference.  As a giving expert and author, my work is researching and working with charities and caring companies to find ways the everyday person can have an impact.  And, my purpose is to teach others how easy it is to help those in greatest need.  
We all have great ideas on how to help out around the world, and now we have an opportunity to share our ideas. Pepsi is giving away millions to fund great ideas!
The Pepsi Refresh Project, for which GOOD and Pepsi are teaming up to give away millions of dollars in grants over the next year, has its first batch of projects for you to vote on. There are almost 800 worthy options, so please head over to the Pepsi Refresh site, make your selection (you can vote multiple times for multiple projects), and help change the world for the better.

About the Pepsi Refresh Project


In an effort to support those who generate innovative, optimistic ideas, the Pepsi Refresh Project (www.refresheverything.com), will award more than $20 million in 2010 to move communities forward. Individuals can apply for grants to benefit a variety of projects and site visitors can vote for the best ideas for funding. The Pepsi Refresh Project is an evolution of the Refresh Everything initiative Pepsi launched in 2009, which showed the brand as an optimistic catalyst for idea creation, leading to an ever-refreshing world. Pepsi will fund projects that make a difference in six categories: Health, Arts & Culture, Food & Shelter, The Planet, Neighborhoods and Education.

DonorsChoose.org offers unique philanthropic sale for Presidents’ Day

Remember this organization I talked about in How to Be an Everyday Philanthropist – Donorschoose.org?
Public schools are struggling more and more to come up with the money for basic classroom supplies, and teachers often have to purchase essentials using their own money. DonorsChoose.org helps fill this gap in a very simple way. Teachers post requests online (all requests are verified by the site) for items they and their students desperately need. You choose a project and the amount you would like to give. DonorsChoose.org then distributes the supplies and makes sure each donor receives photos and thank-you notes from the students.

Well, it gets even better!

This weekend online education charity DonorsChoose.org and the Pershing Square Foundation are teaming up to offer a Presidents’ Day Sale worth caring about.

Every project request submitted by a public school teacher at DonorsChoose.org that supports American History or Civics will be discounted to within $100 of completion. Everyday citizens will be challenged to complete the funding for discounted projects, which primarily serve high poverty classrooms, before the offer expires. This philanthropic sale starts on Thursday, February 11, and runs through Monday, February 15.


The Presidents’ Day offer is the first in a new series called “Almost Home,” made possible by a $1 million grant from the Pershing Square Foundation. Over the next four months, funding will be implemented as five site-wide “Almost Home” offers, each pegged to a specific theme day. For a limited time each month, “citizen philanthropists” will be challenged to activate matching funds from the Pershing Square Foundation by completing the funding on classroom projects meeting the theme day’s criteria.


Here’s how the “Almost Home” series will work this Presidents’ Day Weekend: each qualifying project will display a specialized logo that is easily identifiable to donors looking to maximize their impact on students at a low personal cost. As with any project request at DonorsChoose.org, donors can contribute any dollar amount to classroom projects during each “Almost Home” campaign. Once a project is completely funded, DonorsChoose.org will purchase the requested materials and send them directly to the classroom. Donors will hear back from them classroom they supported in the form of photographs and student thank-you letters.


Classroom project requests that support Civics and American History will come from public and charter schools in all 50 states over Presidents’ Day Weekend and range from a New York City classroom in need of a computer to compete in a nationwide history contest, to a classroom in Los Angeles that needs reading supplies to teach eager first generation Americans about U.S. History.


About DonorsChoose.org
Founded in 2000, DonorsChoose.org is a nonprofit website where public school teachers describe specific educational projects for their students, and donors can choose the projects they want to support. After completing a project, the donor hears back from the classroom they supported in the form of photographs and student thank-you letters.


To date, 118,000 public and charter school teachers have used the site to secure funding for $45 million in books, art supplies, technology, and other resources that their students need to learn. Through http://www.donorschoose.org/ individuals from all walks of life have helped 2.8 million students from low-income families.




About Pershing Square Foundation
Founded in December 2006 by William Ackman, The Pershing Square Foundation has made donations and pledges of approximately $40 million since its inception. Areas of support include, closing the achievement gap in education, global health care, human rights, poverty alleviation and the arts, with a focus on social enterprise as a vehicle of delivery.


We can help Haiti. And it all starts with you.

For Canadians wanting to help Haiti, Have $1 to donate? Go to http://www.sweetspot.ca/ and turn it into $3. Sweetspot.ca has partnered with UNICEF – the lead agency for water, nutrition, child protection and education – to help Haiti through its recovery. They are also reaching out to their readers for extra help so tha…t every dollar donated goes THREE times as far. How does it work? You donate whatever amount you feel comfortable giving, and sweetspot.ca will donate TWICE as much, automatically turning every dollar you donate into three! (And, sweeter yet, the Canadian Federal Government has its own matching program, so your contribution will go even further!)