A Time to Give

For the last couple of years I have been posting organizations—environmental, health-related, art-focused, etc.—- worthy of your consideration to give before the end of the tax/calendar year. All of these are ones I rec’d in the mail or by email in the last few weeks of 2014. I have not included Charity Navigator stars because this year I am late in posting the list. If you like one of these, go to www.charitynavigator.org to see how many stars the organization received (4 is the most). Also, log on for their tips on maximizing the impact of your holiday donation.  Happy hunting & happy giving. Give with Joy! See my P.S. at the end. (I have * my favorites.)

Note: some of the websites did not work so I put their snail mail address next to their names.

Alaska Wilderness League: Dept. 6062, Wash., DC 20042. This supports their current project on Polar Bears who are at great risk with the melting of their frozen habitat.

African Wildlife Foundation: Currently, donating here will support African elephants who are being slaughtered by poachers. Address: 1400 Sixteenth St., Ste. 120, Wash. DC 20036; 1-888-494-5354.

American Bird Conservancy: support.abcbirds.org/join. This organization protects bird habitats, provides conservation action plans for migratory birds, and help support rare animals and plants.

American Lung Association: http://www.lung.org/. Like the American Red Cross, there are local chapter. Their goal is to help people with chronic lung disease, including lung cancer, and support lung health.

+American Red Cross: For as long as I can remember the Red Cross has been there for emergencies. Contact your local Red Cross Chapter in your state to receive more info and to give. www.redcross.org.

*Breast Cancer Action: www.bcaction.org. This is my favorite breast cancer org. This year they are seeking changes in 3 areas: Breast Cancer Screening, Diagnosis and Treatment (with less toxins), Root Causes of Cancer, Pink Ribbon Marketing and Culture that promotes companies that manufacture products that may be adding to the causes of cancer.

Center for Victims of Torture: www.cvt.org (Their lit. notes 4 stars from Charity Navigator). Basic organization that works to end torture everywhere.

The Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund International: www.gorillafund.org.– Working to save the only 900 mountain gorillas from poachers.

*Emily’s Entourage: PO Box 71, Merion Station, PA 19066.  This local organization (Main Line Philadelphia is about helping those with life-threatening cystic fibrosis, such as 30 year old Emily. The research and outreach is incredible!

*Food First: www.foodfirst.org – Started by Frances Moore Lappe (author of Diet for a Small Planet). This org. fights hunger causes with real alternatives through their Institute for Food & Development Policy.

*Environmental Working Group www.ewg.org– This group is the watchdog for many of the products you use on your body as well as the group that puts out the Dirty Dozen & CLean 15.

*Footprints Foundation: http://footprints-foundation.org/. This is a perfect example of one person making a difference. Laura Owens mission: Footprints Foundation Supporting the Rights of Women to Give Birth Without Risking Their Lives. (See her profile with this link: https://www.menupause.info/archives/14053)

*Friends of the Earth’s Bee Project: P.O. Box 96466, Wash, DC 20090. Your donation will help urge the EPA to put an immediate ban on harmful neonic pesticides in the US that are killing bee colonies. (Their main website: www.foe.org. They fight for removing toxins that poison the earth and kill bees, butterflies and other pollinators, which threatens our food supply.)

Grass Roots International: 179 Boylston St., Boston, MA, 02130. Helping people allover the globe who are struggling to keep their land and protect their natural resources which includes the struggle for human rights and equality.

*Human Rights Campaign: www.hrc.org. For the last two years, the Human Rights Campaign has focused on helping obtain civil rights for lesbians, gays, bisexual and transgender people (LGBT).

National Parks Conservation Association: PO Box 97202, Wash., DC 20090. This organization’s goal is to preserve the beauty and wonders of our national parks.

National Women’s History Museum: www.nwhm.org. This organization is working to have a museum on women’s history in Washington, D.C. be a reality, not just a dream.

Native American Heritage Association: www.naha-inc.org (4 stars on Charity Navigator)- This organization currently helps Native Americans in North Dakota survive cold winters, since many families lack adequate heat. It also helps with food and other basic needs.

Pathfinder International: www.pathfinder.org/wecare.– From their mailing: “Empowering Women to control their reproductive health and providing basic reproductive health services and care is not a luxury, it is a right!”

*Progeria Research Foundation: www.progeriaresearch.org. Progeria is a fatal disease that causes children to age rapidly and die prematurely. The research has identified the gene and now working on protocols for a cure with a drug called lonafarnib. There are now 58 children with Progeria in the program, which is free to parents. Leslie Gordon, mother of teenager Sam who died last year, stated to my brother who was one of her mentors at Brown Univ. told him she would find a cure. On the mailing is this: “Together we WILL find a cure!” I don’t doubt it!

Quit Smoking: http://quitsmokingcommunity.org/ This link was provided by a reader of my website. Good website with lots of info on how to quit smoking, a very dangerous habit health-wise and environmentally.

Rainforest Alliance: www.rainforest-alliance.org-Their mission: “to protect wildlife, conserve forests, sustain local people and battle climate change.”

*Seacology: www.seacology.org. A lesser known but still important org. whose missions is “to protect the threatened habitats of the world’s islands by working directly with local communities to both conserve their natural resources and improve their quality of life.”

Union of Concerned Scientists: Two Brattle Square, Suite 6, Cambridge, MA, 02138. This organization wants to “eliminate misinformation that undermines vitally important public policies for private profit.” They conduct rigorous research to solve the planet’s pressing environmental problems.

*United Farm Workers: PO Box 62, Keene, Calif. 93531.  Helping farm workers receive better wages and hours without the high risk of poor healthor death. Helps with food and other basic necessities crucial to the workers’ survival.

*USO: PO Box 96860, Wash. DC 20007. As a teen my mother would go to the USO in Ft. Dix, NJ,  not too far from where we lived. This year the information is about helping wounded warriors and their families.

Waterkeeper Alliance: www.waterkeeper.org. Started by Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. this non-profit fights daily threats to our national waterways where children swim, people draw on drinking water and people fish. They use the law and public opinion to bring polluters to justice and force federal and state gov’ts to enforce US environmental laws.

Give what you can and do it with love and compassion. Volunteering for these organizations is another way to give.

P.S. I receive a Daily Horoscope and this was the one from a few days ago that fits with my spending 2 hours on this list—well worth my time even if only one person gives to one organization. I have put in bold or underlined the most important statements to me.

December 10, 2014
Doing All You Can
Sagittarius Daily Horoscope

Your approach to worldly suffering will likely be a broadminded and progressive one today. For the first time, you may recognize that the level of abundance you enjoy is unusual and that most people throughout the globe have made their ways through life without the blessings you have enjoyed. You may react to this revelation by reflecting upon the many ways you might give aid and support to those less fortunate than yourself or improve living conditions for those besieged by poverty. The enormity of this task can be daunting, but if you believe in yourself, you’ll likely discover today that the power to make a positive difference is within you. Your efforts to improve the world, whether by financial or direct means, can help you feel like a part of something larger than yourself.

It is only when we believe our efforts can change the world that we can begin making a positive difference through action. Though thoughtful individuals typically recognize that there is much suffering in the world, few consider themselves equipped to address the needless hurt and poverty they see. When we believe in our power to ease worldly pain, we recognize that even our most meager charitable endeavors have merit and are part of a larger community of goodness. We don’t eschew opportunities to express ourselves philanthropically, thinking only of what we cannot do. Rather, we understand that change is the result of every person doing all they can. When you believe in yourself today, you’ll find the strength to become a lifelong philanthropist.

+Since posting this, two people have told me that the American Red Cross is not a good choice for giving. One person told me most of the money does not go to service; the other told me that very little of what we give them actually goes to the disaster or what you want it for. I checked Charity Navigator and here is what they list: Four stars are the highest number you can receive.

I suggest you contact the Red Cross before giving to make sure it goes where you choose.
Overall 85.25 3 stars
Financial 80.35 3 stars
Accountability & Transparency 93.00 4 stars
***I also forgot to list the Environmental Working Group, which I added on 12/128.

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