Thursday, June 2, 2011


I am sure you all have been bombarded with return address stickers, notepads, cards, even talking wristwatches from zillions of worthy organizations and causes. If you open them and read them, some of them will break your heart and others not so much. Which makes it difficult to choose which causes you want to support.

Which exacerbates the problem more often is trying to decide which one is the legitimate representative of that particular disease or cause. There are many for my most obvious choices--cancer and Alzheimer's and the ones that help children like Boys Town, the children born with cleft palates (yup, they got me on this one too) and the blind children (talking wristwatch).

I understand that their expenses are ongoing and if you do donate to their cause, they are right back at you for more. I finally realized the Paralyzed Veterans were sending me something almost weekly and the included "gifts" were increasing. But I guess it is up to us to figure out things like that and act accordingly.

My favorite charity though is Habitat for Humanity. Here in my town, a few years ago, only women could work on the house they built. I was enraptured at this and wished to pound a few nails myself but they were working mainly on this steep roof and the things I could do had been done. But they did have a problem. The guy next door would not let them use his hose for water. Talk about a selfish old bastard. After watching and kibitzing for a while, I left after putting my name in for the next house women built and went to the drug store (my second home) and they had this tremendous sale on bottled water! Like almost giving it away. I bought up all they had left about 16 crates and brought them back to the building site. That was a fun fun thing. I know, just a blip in the radar, if that. Since then I have kept up with the organization.

Where they have helped all over the world is amazing. In addition to building new homes, they have a Microbuild Fund which they offer to those who have started a home, but lacked funds to finish it. In places that have been hit by disasters such as Japan, Sri Lanka, India, Ethiopia, Haiti, Bosnia, and here in America, they offer help with clean-up and rebuilding. The figures are astonishing. Since their beginning, they have served more than 2 million people! This is a world wide effort by many nations helping other nations.

You can sign up for more info here or if you are interested. As I said starting out, you all probably have your own favorite charities. Tell us what they are!


Pat said...

That was a great idea to buy the water! I'm sure they appreciated it! My sister-in-law has helped out a few times building homes for Habitat-for-Humanity and she is an architect, but I know they take people without any skills (me). My husband and I have talked about doing something like this in our travels.

Von said...

Onya Bernie, I do appreciate a lateral thinker!!

Bernie said...

Good on you my friend, water for it. I too have a few charities I support each month, my passion are the children's hospitals and cancer societies......we have to help each other through good and bad times......:-)Hugs

yaya said...

You are a rock star! What a good idea and you are wonderful to be so willing to help. Our church has volunteered to serve lunch for habitat many times..that's a fun thing to do also. It's a great organization. I've been involved in relay for life and I do love the Red Cross and Salvation Army. We also can give a donation for humanitarian efforts through our Church. I have decided never to donate when I get phone requests. Just can't trust them. Let's not forget's free and easy and it always helps!

Midlife Jobhunter said...

I've always thought Habitat for Humanity a worthy cause. I'm thinking there are a few cities in our country that could use a few new houses right now.

Wander to the Wayside said...

I gave a small donation ($15)to St. Joseph's Indian School several years ago, and I now have more dream catchers, note pads, and labels than I know what to do with - and I only made that one donation. I figure I paid more for the stuff than actually went to the cause!

I donate regularly to the Humane Society, ASPCA, World Society for the Prevention of Animals (WSPA), and American Heart Assn.

Jenean said...

Here in Ventura county we have a Habitat for Humanity resale store. Folks can donate left over building supplies, furniture fixtures and appliances. Proceeds go toward Habitat. I took a trunk full of tile wallpaper, lights, stuff left over from our recent remodel.... pretty neat idea!

judy in ky said...

I have a soft spot for animals. Their stories and pictures are the ones that always get to me. I contribute to the Humane Society, Alley Cat Allies, North Shore Animal League, and the ASPCA. They send me a lot of return address labels, which I use, and one of them just sent me a little cooler with the cutest picture on the front of a kitten and two puppies. Irresistible, I'm afraid! My husband sends money to Habit for Humanity.

Deb Shucka said...

I love Habitat, too. Good for you finding a way around the water thing. I'm sure everyone was thrilled.

We also are drawn to local organizations whose purpose is to conserve land.

Michelle Wells Grant said...

Unfortunately there will always be ol' bastards like the stingy water guy and fortunately there will always be generous people like you who will supply the water! I guess that's what keeps the world in balance. As for charities, I've been partial to UNICEF over the years.

Anita said...

We sponsor a child in India, we give to our church, our rescue squad, our fire station, etc. I guess every little bit helps, as they say.
We don't give to the random "free address labels" charities...just too many.
Thanks for bringing attention to charities. I believe everyone should contribute if and when they can...time and water are good!


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