Something to Think About

"I found it is the small everyday deeds of ordinary folk that keep the darkness at bay. Small acts of kindness and love."
- J.R.R. Tolkien, The Hobbit

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

'Tis the season

Our minds turn to giving this time of year.  We not only think of giving presents to friends and family but of giving to various charities.

The charities a person prefers often tells you something about a person.  For example, you can many times tell if they are an animal-lover or if a particular disease has touched their lives depending on the charities they favor.

I realized this, myself, when I ran my mind over the charities and non-profits I prefer to give to:

  • The American Red Cross - I'm sure everyone is familiar with this organization and the wonderful work it does so there is no explanation needed.
  • Kiva - An online friend introduced me to this organization.  Basically you lend money to people who need it to set up a business (or expand a current business) in a poverty-stricken area of the world.  They pay back the loan as their business prospers and you can use that money to lend to someone else - or take it back if you prefer. It does have some risk, but they have an almost 99% repayment rate so it's worth it to me.
  • IGLHRC - International Gay & Lesbian Rights Commission.  This is a terrific organization that helps people who are discriminated against because of their sexual orientation or gender identity throughout the world.
  • CBLDF - Comic Book Legal Defense Fund. Anyone who knows me at all knows that I'm a huge supporter of first amendment rights.  This organization works to protect the rights of comic book professionals.
  • Paws of PA - A co-worker volunteers for this local organization.  This is a pet rescue organization that also organizes low-cost spay/neuter programs.
  • Foundation Beyond Belief - I've recently discovered this non-profit.  A person chooses a set amount to contribute each month. Contributions are split up among many worthy charities which are listed on the site and change each quarter.  The contributors are mostly athiest, agnostics and non-believers (hence the name) though of course anyone can contribute.
Whenever I consider giving to a particular organization, I always check their rating on the Charity Navigator.  Smaller local charities probably won't be rated but the larger ones should be.  It's a good place to check out before you give!

Image of the earth courtesy of NASA

1 comment:

  1. Definitely an interesting mix of charities! I haven't heard of Charity Navigator, but I'll definitely look them up!