Click on the image to learn about the artist, Stephanie Martel.
When I first read May Cause Miracles by Gabrielle Bernstein, she mentions donating 10 percent of your income to charity. At first, I was resistant to this idea. As a freelance writer, I don’t make a ton of money. But the more I thought about it, I realized that I can donate my time to organizations that matter like 826LA (writing and tutoring classes for students without arts programs) or The Blank Theater (which runs a Young Playwrights Festival).
In addition to my volunteer work, I decided this year to donate a portion of my income to worthy charities. I mostly donate to animal organizations such as Farm Sanctuary, Mercy for Animals, and Gentle Barn, but I reached out to my Facebook friends and asked for suggestions. The response was tremendous. I felt inspired to rotate my donations amongst several suggested organizations. Here’s the list, the organization’s mission statement, and how you can help.
Mission: Located in Downtown Los Angeles, this shelter offers housing, wellness programs, a local veternans program, education, and employment for homeless women.
Donate: Time, money, wishlist of goods
Mission: Provide an ongoing source of books to underprivileged and at-risk children throughout New Jersey in order to support literacy skills and to encourage a love of reading.
Donate: Time, money, books, or run a book drive
Mission: Since March of 1996, Food on Foot has operated as a volunteer-based, non-profit organization providing hot dinners, snacks (fresh fruit, carrots, granola bars and bread), and drinks (bottled water and milk) to as many as 200 homeless and poor individuals and families each week. During our weekly meal service each Sunday in Hollywood, we also distribute gently used clothing and other essentials.
Donate: Money or volunteer
Mission: We provide refugee boys and girls, grades 6-12, with mentorship, structure, and support to help them succeed in soccer and academics.
Donate: To build a school or add to a scholarship fund
Mission: myAgro envisions moving a million small-scale farmers beyond subsistence farming and out of poverty by 2022 by creating a model in West Africa that other distribution networks around the world can integrate into their own program offerings.
Donate: Money or apply to the fellowship program
Mission: Classics in Color focuses on producing vibrantly cast classic works for the stage, expanding the perception of classical theatre. As a multi-cultural, multi-ethnic ensemble, Classics in Color embraces the theatre of inclusion, on stage and off, opening up and extending the understanding of classic tales, tales of the human experiences that touch us all: the depth of despair, the sensation of success, the heart-driven love, the beauty of forgiveness, and the need to belong.
Donate: Money or support a sponsored artist
Mission: Working within the Asian, Indian, Latino, and Black communities, A3M’s mission is to improve the health and welfare of all people by providing education and assistance while facilitating prompt access to potential marrow and blood cell donors.
Donate: Money or sign up to be a bone marrow donor (it’s a very simple swab!)
Mission: The mission of St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital is to advance cures, and means of prevention, for pediatric catastrophic diseases through research and treatment. Consistent with the vision of our founder Danny Thomas, no child is denied treatment based on race, religion or a family’s ability to pay.
Donate: Money or volunteer
Mission: From volunteer Lauren Candia, “Project SISTER is a rape crisis center. They take calls with survivors and accompany them to the hospital, provide counseling services, accompany survivors to the court hearings, and they also have outreach and educational services.”
Donate: Volunteer or donate (the donation button isn’t working on the site, but call for more information)
Mission: We strengthen families by empowering parents through education. With our free classes, low-income parents gain the skills to create a better life for themselves while transferring important literacy skills to their children. Together, we can close the achievement gap before children even begin school.
Donate: Share a book that inspired you, money, or volunteer
Mission: We help children and families who are impacted by HIV/AIDS or who have other serious medical conditions to be resilient and to build healthier futures.
Donate: Money, family goods, or volunteer