It's the holidays, so it's time to think about those less fortunate. The spirit of Christmas has always been, for me, the spirirt of giving, and not just ugly sweaters and ties. So, here's my annual round-up of my favorite charities, and I hope you'll consider donating to these worthy causes and changing a few lives this holiday.
First up: Heifer International.
This charity is dedicated to helping people in underprivileged countries with livestock. You can donate a chicken, a cow, a goat, and any of these things can make it possible for that individual or family to eat, to have milk, to be able to sell that milk or eggs to support themselves. It costs so little to change someone's life; just $20 donates a flock of chickens. A cow is $500, but think how far that money goes.
Next up: American Cancer Society
I don't have to tell you all the good this charity does: not only does your donation help fund research to seek better treatments and possibly even one day a cure for this disease, but you can also help support programs that educate and counsel people recently diagnosed. You can also volunteer at events that raise awareness, and even give gifts in memory of those who have lost their battle with the disease. They are doing good work everyday for those with cancer, and they are near and dear to my heart.
Okay, if the picture above doesn't melt your heart, I don't know what would;) The ASPCA is on the front lines saving animals from abusive situations, getting them medical treatment, helping strays, and in general making life better for our four-legged friends. Your donation could feed a homeless animal for a month, or get a stray cat or dog neutered and off the streets. You could be supporting a horse rescued from the slaughterhouse, or a rabbit that would have been euthenized when its owner refused to care for it. Their motto says it all: We are their voice. They cannot speak, so we need to speak up for them.
Lastly, a little bit of a personal plea. I hate asking for money; it's very hard for me, for obvious reasons. But, in spite of all I've tried to do to save money for the move, my rabbit recently got sick and his vet visits ended up costing me nearly $1000. I was happy I had the money to spend, but it means I'm very, very short. At this point, I can pay for the movers or my apartment, and I can't afford anything else. If you are reading this and you are so inclined, I'd greatly appreciate any small donation. Even $5 helps. The button on the top left connects to my "California or Bust" fund. I'd much rather you give money to the charities above before giving to me, but if you have anything left, I'd be endlessly grateful.
Happy Holidays, dear readers!