March 8, 2014
This Week's Idea
GIVE BOOKS, THE GIFT OF IMAGINATION
BookEnds was the idea of an eight-year-old boy named Brandon who encouraged his classmates to donate their own books to an orphanage. His mom, Robin Keefe, founded BookEnds 15 years ago and is its president today.
What an impact! 250,000 student volunteers have collected used books at events that they organized. Two million books have been given away to 500,000 at-risk kids.
How to Help
1. Send a gently used children's book to BookEnds.
2. Organize a book drive. Many schools, libraries, food banks and clinics are grateful for gently used children's books.
3. Donate money.
4. Visit The Literacy Site and click to donate books to needy kids worldwide, free.
I GOT THIS
Pay it behind: Pay for the coffee, parking or bridge toll of the person behind you.
SEND THE GIFT THAT CAN SAVE A LIFE: A BRA
More than 20 million women and girls around the world are being held as slaves. A few lucky ones are rescued and moved to safe houses. But without a livelihood, most turn to prostitution to support themselves.
Now they won't have to. Free the Girls turns survivors into businesswomen by giving them jobs selling second-hand clothing - especially bras. In many countries, a bra is a luxury. As a result, Free the Girls entrepreneurs in Mozambique, Kenya, Uganda, Mexico and El Salvador, earn 5 times the local minimum wage when they have bras to sell.
Me + You: They Need Bras and We Have Them. Bras are easy to donate. Most women in the west have at least one bra in the back of a drawer that they don't wear anymore. Last year, Free the Girls, shipped more than 100,000 bras, including thousands from Do One Nice Thing Nice-o-holics.
Be Mine: When you send a bra, what you're really sending are your heartprints - hope, comfort and strength straight from your heart. This year, instead of a big Valentines splurge, how about using some of the money to mail bras and get together with friends to collect them?
Mail to: Free The Girls, 1552 Pioneer Trail, Chesterton, IN 46304. Click for drop-off locations (US, Canada, Africa)
SEND A SOAP, SAVE A LIFE
Every day, 9,000 children under 5 die from infections because they have no soap. Clean the World sterilizes soaps and makes them into new bars.
Then soaps and hygiene kits are distributed to people who need them in domestic shelters in N. America and in 70 countries. One of those countries is Haiti, which received shipments of Clean the World soap following the 7.0 earthquake there four years ago.
How to help:
1. Mail a new bar of soap to Clean the World (addresses are below). Unused hotel soaps, shampoos and lotions are good to send too.
2. Hold a soap drive at school, work and places of worship
3. Volunteer at Clean the World warehouses in Las Vegas or Orlando
4. Encourage hotels to donate their used and unused soaps and shampoos
5. More ways to help
Clean the World
400A Pittman St.
Orlando, FL 32801
Clean the World
3111 S. Valley View Blvd, Suite L-115
Las Vegas, NV 89102
HUNGRY? YOU'RE NOT THE ONLY ONE
Fresh Fruit: Flowers for a holiday table wilt and are soon tossed out. Instead, use whole fruits for a colorful, sweet-smelling centerpiece. The next day, bring it to your local food pantry to feed the less fortunate in your community. If you have food to give or need food, click to find a food pantry or food bank, or donate online to AmpleHarvest.org.
WHAT A DIFFERENCE A CAP MAKES
Every month, Knots of Love volunteers knit and crochet more than 3,500 caps with love, for people experiencing traumatic hair loss. The soft, warm beanies, as well as neonatal blankets, are free to patients of all ages across the U.S. Many go to chemo patients, some go to veterans after brain surgery, and others go to people of all ages experiencing various life-threatening conditions.
You'd be amazed how much a little cap can mean:
"I received my hats today and they are PERFECT! They feel good and they make me feel cute again! This is my happy day. Thank you," - Grace
"I wear mine and feel the love you put into it when you made it. God blessed your hands. Your selfless gift is a blessing to me."
"You make such a beautiful difference. It was your soft, red cap that touched my heart during the darkest and scariest days of chemo- thank you!"
"Thank you for caring so much for total strangers." - Nancy
Not a knitter? Not a problem. Donate online. What a tender way to honor a loved one who has or had cancer.