“It's not how much we give but how much love we put into giving.” - Mother Theresa
Where are you giving your time and money today? If you need some inspiration, take a look at some of the incredible organizations below. If giving money isn't available to you right now, giving of your time is just as valuable to an organization. Something I often hear from folks is that they don't have time or money to volunteer. Just like everything in our life, it's a choice. Can you imagine the impact if each of us gave 2 hours a month to an organization? It would literally change our communities, our neighbourhoods, our society. I encourage you to choose one group today and either make a financial donation or commit to volunteering with them. You will gain so much from the experience.
Dress For Success Vancouver This amazing organization provides support for women who are transitioning back into the workforce. Each women is given an interview outfit and feedback on her resume. She is then invited to attend workshops and seminars on everything from budget planning to meditation, networking to goal setting. It's no secret that when the lives of women change, the way our communities function change. Women raise families, are more likely to volunteer and give money to organizations. So when a woman is elevated into a place where she feels valued and worthy, the ripple effect is incredible. This year DFSV's goal is to support over 1,000 women. You can support this organization by sponsoring a woman for a year, holding a clothing drive, donating your gently used work appropriate clothing or volunteering for one of their committees. Visit this link to give or learn more about DFS.
The World Needs More Love Letters Last year I shared with you my love for the beautiful work these folks are doing. Love Letters is a simple and generous way to give to someone who needs a reminder of their worth, value and power. If you aren't able to give with money or time, I encourage you to head over to their website and start writing. Every few weeks they post requests from individuals who needs some extra love in their day. Imagine receiving love letters from a stranger telling you that you are loved? It's the most simple and most sacred gift we can give to someone. Read the letter requests here.
Canuck Place Children's Hospice Five and half years ago a friend from high school and her family were embraced by Canuck Place as they spent precious hours with their newborn baby. This baby girl's entry into the world was traumatic, but thanks to the loving hearts of staff and volunteers, the time with her family at Canuck Place was peaceful. She took her last breaths surrounded by her parents, brother, grandparents, aunts and uncles in a garden blooming with cherry blossoms. This place was a space in which her parents could hold, kiss and rock her without being surrounded by medical equipment. It allowed them to be a family.
On December 16th I'm participating in my first run race. A 5km run around Stanley Park called The Big Elf Run. My official elf name is Nutmeg Hollylaugh! I'm collecting donations for Canuck Place as member of Team Canuck. You can donate here.
Other incredible organizations to follow and support...
David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust A few years ago my parents visited this organization while traveling through Kenya. You can adopt an orphaned baby elephant and support other animals they rescue. The work they do is incredible. The young elephants are never left alone and always have a keeper with them, even at night. You see elephants are very compassionate and empathic animals. They mourn for days the death of a member of their herd and the babies are very susceptible to illness if they get lonely. I love following them on social media and seeing stories about the rescues and progress of their wards. Donating to DSWT is a great gift for a new baby or little person. Check them out here.
charity: water A few years ago I read about charity: water and was curious about the unique model they have developed as a charitable organization. 100% of what you give goes directly to building wells and other projects to provide clean drinking water to communities that don't currently have access. 100%!! That's unheard of in the case of similar groups. On the Rich Roll Podcast a few months ago, Scott Harrison the founder of charity: water was interviewed and explained how this model works. Basically they have a group of funders who give money for the sole purpose of running the organization. This means that any money that others give goes directly to water projects. Every day over 1,400 children die from consuming diseases caused by lack of clean drinking water. Think about that. In my neighbourhood that's the combined population of the high school, elementary school and the day program at the community centre! It doesn't take a big donation to make a huge impact. Learn more.
Hilarity for Charity Raising money with laughter to support awareness, education, research and assist those living with Alzheimer's, this organization was started by Seth Rogen and his wife Lauren and is supported by some of the biggest names in comedy. Most of us know someone who has been deeply impacted by this disease. Perhaps a friend who lost a parent, a colleague who is supporting a family member or a member of our community who is living with this disease. Take a look at their website for resources, events and ways to support.