Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Go to the charity mall.

It's been over two years since I suggested readers shop with a purpose. Consider patronizing these 'charity malls' which donate a portion of their profits to a great cause, perhaps even one you choose! Here are just a few of the malls from which you can choose:

* Giveness describes itself as "A Social Network for Philanthropy." Shop Amazon, EBay and other retailers to raise money for your favorite organization. Or use some of the many other features.

* Benevolink works with hundreds of online businesses which contribute a percentage of every dollar you spend to the nonprofit organizations of your choice.

* Giveline has over 1 million products from which you can choose. And every purchase results in a donation to your favorite charity.

* works with almost 600 online businesses and donates up to 27% of the purchase price to your favorite worthy cause.

* Buy for Charity allows you to shop at over 350 stores. A portion of your purchase price goes to the charity you choose.

* donates up to 12% of your purchase price to your favorite organization.

And for those in the UK:

* rectifi charity shop donates 20% of your purchase price to charity. Choose from over 400 UK shops. They also make donations for Yahoo web searches done from the site. Thanks Jonny!

Remember that for the shopper, the contributions are not tax-deductible. That's why the businesses participate. Since they make the donation, it's tax deductible for them. But since you're going to shop anyway, that probably doesn't matter. If you run a non-profit, considering registering your organization. That way, shoppers can more easily support your work. In each case, almost any charity qualifies and it's free for them to join. And often schools and colleges qualify too. So think of your favorites and start shopping! In the words of Benevolink, "I Shop. Therefore I Give."

"A hurtful act is the transference to others of the degradation which we bear in ourselves." - Simone Weil

Friday, July 06, 2007

Give blood now, and again in 56 days.

I just came from donating blood. The local newspaper has had several articles on the shrinking blood supply - Atlanta was down to less than one day of reserves. That often happens in the summer when people are on vacation. But more folks on the road means more people are likely have accidents and need blood. So I and lots of other folks gathered at the local Red Cross Donor Center to give a pint and perhaps save 3 lives. It didn't take long - about an hour - and it's a great way to serve the community. Especially since only 5% of people who are eligible to donate actually do.

If you've never given blood before or if it's been more than 56 days since your last donation, why not make an appointment to donate? Just call 1-800 -GIVE LIFE (448-3543) or visit to find a blood drive near you or make an appointment at your local donor center. Alternatively, call 1-888-USBLOOD (872-5663) or visit to make an appointment at a community blood bank.

And if you can't donate blood, consider donating time or money to support these efforts. You never know when you or someone you love might need blood. Someone will be there for you. Won't you be there for someone else? And don't forget to consider all the ways you can give life.

“There is no revenge so complete as forgiveness.” - Josh Billings, American Humorist, 1818-1885