Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Oct. 15 Blog Action Day Post on Poverty...

Blog Action Day is an annual nonprofit event aiming to unite the world’s bloggers, podcasters and videocasters to post on the same day about the same issue. For this year, the goal is to raise awareness and trigger a global discussion on the topic of poverty. To me, this horrifying circumstance quickly translates into powerlessness and need. Helping those on the street or without is something I care about, and over time, I've identified some practical activities that really help address poverty. The best of these ideas are provided below, along with the hope that we will all rally together today and tomorrow to ease suffering everywhere.


. See someone in need? Do a good deed. Many of us steel ourselves against those who hold "will work for food" signs... or hold out their hands. After reading a powerful book called My Life on the Street
by "Joe Homeless," I realized that it takes a lot of guts to ask for help, and for whatever it may be worth, giving something always makes me feel better than any other alternative.

. Click every day. TheHungerSite.com is an amazing website which for years has given each of us the ability to "click" each day and thereby enable the giving of food to the hungry. I encourage you to bookmark the site and make it a daily point to visit, and to shop their gift store on special occasions. Another great site is ripple.org -- which also exists to harness the power of internet advertising in providing a tool for people to help others. Painless, effective... brilliant.

. Search the web -- give to charity. GoodSearch.com is a Yahoo!-powered search engine which donates 50-percent of its revenue to the charities and schools designated by its users. Use it to get proven search results and have advertisers donate money to your cause.

. When in doubt, give to the Red Cross. The American Red Cross is a humanitarian organization led by volunteers and guided by its Congressional charter and the Fundamental Principles of the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement, and it is committed to providing relief to victims of disasters and helping people prevent, prepare for and respond to emergencies. Can't afford to send money? Give blood -- "the gift of life."

. Choose charities your group can benefit. Each year, I research a new group of charitable organizations to send gifts to on behalf of my clients at the companies ATTIK, a52, Elastic, Rock Paper Scissors, Nonfiction Spots, PostWorks, Shilo, Stardust and Tool of North America. A main tool I use for this research is www.JustGive.org, a nonprofit committed to helping people connect with charities and causes they care about. In the past, we have gifted the Partnership for the Homeless, World Hunger Year and the National Coalition for the Homeless. Use JustGive to learn more about each of these and the many other remarkable organizations who are making an impact on the lives of the poverty-stricken every day.

Thanks for the inspiration and the memories, blogactionday.org.