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Saturday, August 30, 2008

Some of My Favorite Charities

Dear Folks,

Check out my new sidebar on "My Favorite Charities"

Money is tight, of course, all over, so when considering how to make the most of charitable giving, we have many, many options.

Over the years I have heard many people say they have a 'problem' giving to charities because they don't see the benefit other than a handout - a little shortsighted in my opinion, but if a belief that you want to see 'more' for the donation, look no further than

The goal of Heifer International is to turn recipients into donors and to maximize the concept of "give a man a plow and he will eat for a lifetime" instead of a single meal.

I was frankly skeptical when my good friend Kathy Marshall and a fellow goat-lover told me about Heifer and then I did my research. Well-know folks like Barbara Kingsolver have endorsed and followed the path of Heifer's gifts.

When you donate to Heifer, you can chose the country of your choice (including the USA), and your donation goes into projects started by Heifer, where the recipient is given a cow, goat, several chickens, pig, or seeds, for example, to begin the work of building a productive life for the family and their community. In turn the recipient agrees to provide the first adult female of their new livestock to the next family in the village selected to be added to the project. The celebration of one family 'passing on' the gift to the next is huge in these projects.

Read Kinsolver's wonderful article on the Andean Goat/Mesquite Project which returned a village devastated by mass-commercial farming to its previous productivity.

And on my initial charities list is one of our most beloved local no-kill shelters, economically impacted by the recent economy upheavals.

There are many, many worthwhile charities -- if these don't satisfy you, find some local ones which do, and give even a little to help a lot.

-- Catherine, The Herb Lady