a little can go a long way.

by Janetha on March 28, 2013

in tips

hey, there! thanks for the get well wishes. i actually feel pretty crappy still, but that’s life! i’ll survive, haha.

because i am sick, i was throwing myself a bit of a pity party yesterday. instead of wallowing in my sickness sorrow, i changed my thinking and focused on the fact that i was lucky to have a home to stay home sick in and loved ones willing to help me out. mind over matter, right?

the fourth and final part of the beautiful change challenge i have been participating in is all about community. this assignment definitely had a part in me changing my “poor me” tune yesterday. i have been asked to share ways i can help my community and “do good” this spring.

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although i was home sick yesterday, i wasn’t bed ridden. with this project in the back of my mind, i decided to find some things at my house that i could donate to my community.

we don’t have kiddos, but our pups are pretty spoiled. they have more than they need, and i know there are so many pups who are without homes. i piled up some blankets, towels, and toys to donate to the humane society. shhh.. they won’t even miss them.

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also, when momma b stopped by yesterday, i had a couple of bags of clothing and shoes set aside for donation to those in need (those of the human variety, that is.) she is a missionary for an LDS ward here in salt lake city and works with a lot of families in need, so i am hoping the items i gave her can be put to good use. i plan to do a more thorough sweep through all of my closets to find more things i can donate. (including kitchen items and dishes! we have a lot of those we can donate.)

while i don’t have a lot of extra time to volunteer, i do enjoy it. i have had the opportunity to work at the utah food bank (loved that!) in the past and i also participate in sub-for-santa activities around the holidays. i have always wanted to volunteer at an animal shelter–i think i will make an effort to do so this spring or summer. (although i may come home with 18 dogs and 12 cats…)

another way to help the community is to donate monetarily. i love participating in fundraisers! back in july of 2011, i organized the great fundraising act (an online auction/fundraiser) to raise for my friend susan’s chemotherapy. the blog world all chipped in a little here and a little there to raise nearly thirty THOUSAND dollars. recently, i donated to a couple other fundraisers. my friend teri participated in a bowling fundraiser for big brothers big sisters. another friend, erica, ran a color run in her wedding dress to raise money for the special olympics! while no single one of us may have a LOT to give.. if we all give a little, it can turn into something huge and great and amazing for those who need it!

speaking of monetary donations…

when i went to brunch with my girlfriends on sunday, one of them was telling me that she and her boyfriend donate a percentage of their income to charity. awesome, right? while i am not rolling in the dough, i know i could definitely afford to chip in to charity here and there. i LOVE this idea and i would like to sit down with marshall and find a charity that we could give some of our income to—or even choose a different one each month.  sure, we may not have a lot to give, but anything helps. like i said, i am a big believer in the power of a little bit here and there adding up to a lot!

a quick google search led me to a few resources in order to find charities to donate to. the websites i found were:

i think it would be cool to discover charities out there than may often times be overlooked.
so, there you have it.. four ways to make your little go a long way!
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*edited to add!* coincidentally, my longtime blog friend, karen, just contacted me regarding a kickstarter campaign for alice & whittles and asked me to share it with my readers. i thought this went perfectly with tonight’s post!

alice & whittles is a company founded by karen’s friend, sofi. sofi and her partner spent years providing humanitarian relief to refugees fleeing conflict zones; it was through that role that sofi and her partner were able to see first hand the incredible things that some of the most vulnerable people were able to create, using few resources and a lot ingenuity. that’s where the idea for alice & whittles was born.

alice & whittles is producing beautiful espadrilles through a business model that is meant to act as an alternative to aid. the material is sourced from small scale organic farms, and woven by hand by rural weavers in india, before being hand assembled by craftspeople in france. through creative sourcing and production, alice & whittles benefits every person involved in the creation of the espadrilles. does this spark your interest? if so, click HERE to learn more about the campaign, find the donation link, and to enter an alice & whittles giveaway.  perfect timing, karen!

Qs~

1. how have you helped your community lately?

2. do you donate a portion of your income to charity? if so, how did you choose which one(s)?

xo. janetha g.

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Kenzie @ sarcasminspandex March 28, 2013 at 10:25 pm

Thanks for the reminder of how sucky I’ve been at looking outside of my tunnel vision lately. I do believe that service lifts my spirits as much as those being served. I used to be really good at choosing one random charity that our family would participate in each month. It was a great way to teach my entitled and spoiled kids that they can feel good when they serve others. We did anything from making activity kits for the kids at Primary Childrens Hospital to serving dinner at the downtown SLC homeless shelter. I just recently got involved with the Girls on the Run program. It teaches young women self esteem and empowerment through running. I don’t know how to do much, but I do love to run so why not choose something that I how experienced personally? Good tips Janetha.

I also consider my daily choice of sweaty gym clothes and 3 day old ponytails while eating string cheese out of my purse during grocery shopping as a charity of sorts. People see me and are reminded that things can always be worse for them. I’m just here to make ya’ll feel better about yourself.

Kristina March 28, 2013 at 10:30 pm

I definitely don’t volunteer as much as I would like to. I’ve gone to the rescue where we got our dog and helped with adoption events, set up/tear down, etc. cause she’s pretty much a one woman show (an incredible woman, at that!). If I had more time, I’d love to spend it at a homeless shelter or with kids.

Maria March 28, 2013 at 11:10 pm

I love this post! Great reminders to all!

I used to work for a family foundation and had the privilege to meet face to face with a lot of nonprofit Executive Directors and was exposed to a lot of nonprofits that I didn’t know existed. My favorite (and one that I donate a portion of my income to) is called Jeremy Bloom’s Wish For a Lifetime. It’s sort of like the Children’s Wish Foundation, but for senior citizens. They sponsored a lot of WWII veterans on a trip to Washington D.C. to visit the memorials, which I found completely touching. And they paid to have an elderly couple a wedding since they never could afford to have a real wedding (cue tears). Anyway, I could talk about them forever and I love how they are working to bring back respect and dignity to this population of people.

marisa March 29, 2013 at 12:03 am

Uh, how awesome that there is another person that spells Sofi like that? I knew it was possible but had never really had contact with anyone. I love the company just because of that silly detail. :)

Joy March 29, 2013 at 1:35 am

Jim and I do donate – its not as much as it was when I worked. But the trade off is I volunteer a LOT more now. In the last 3 days (for example) I went with Dobby and got him certified as a therapy dog so we can start making weekly visits to the local nursing home, coached a group of kids on horses and horsemanship to help them earn a scholarship to Kentucky, and made a card for a little girl I don’t know who is very sick and my whole gym wanted to sign so I made a big one out of poster board!

stacie March 29, 2013 at 4:25 am

Thanks for spotlighting volunteerism. I do some work with my local library and an animal rescue group but most of my time goes to Lions Clubs International. We are the largest service organization in the world and still the best kept secret!

RainStorm March 29, 2013 at 5:57 am

Hope you start feeling better soon. Being ill is horrible.
I’m trying to have a major clear out and it feels so much better to donate instead of bin things!

kendra March 29, 2013 at 8:11 am

I feel your pain, I’m sick right now too.

I just finished a month house sitting at my parents, I was amazed by the amount of mail addressed to my Mom from all the charity’s she supports. Time to follow her example!

I donate regularly to a wolf organization in Minnesota. I use to volunteer at our animal shelter but stopped after I adopted a senior dog from there.

Thanks for the reminder. A little does add up. Happy Easter.

betty March 29, 2013 at 8:37 am

i love this! i use to volunteer at an animal rescue when i was in middle/high school.. i LOVED it!! i also give a little out of each paycheck to help various animal shelters and chained dogs rescue. a litte eat week doesnt seem like much.. but over the year it adds up!

Corrie Anne March 29, 2013 at 9:14 am

Love that you’re sharing about this. I recently started using Pure Charity (https://www.purecharity.com/) which has sort of a social/kickstarter type feel — you can start charity projects and others can donate. It also has a program where if you spend money at certain retailers including like Gap, Target, West Elm, etc. they’ll put a percentage into your charity account that you can donate to the project of your choice.

suki March 29, 2013 at 9:49 am

Both! :-) Love getting involved and giving back to the community.

Linz @ Itz Linz March 29, 2013 at 11:18 am

i donate to many different organizations & causes

Heidi Nicole March 29, 2013 at 11:48 am

I’m in the process of getting all the training I need to volunteer at a local animal shelter – we don’t have the space/lifestyle for dogs so I’m volunteering to run with the dogs. Its rather selfish as I’ll be able to get my runs in and volunteer all at the same time!

Its quite the process at this shelter, but I think it’ll be worth it – besides, when we are in a position to get dogs we’ll know what kind we want. Also, if you ever want to do something like this – running dogs – check into private/non-profit shelters that don’t get state/federal funding as they have more flexibility in what they can/can not do!

Nicole March 29, 2013 at 12:04 pm

Such a good reminder to do little things to make positive changes for others. :)

Random question: What’s the name of the font you used in the image that you uploaded “Donate Items, Fundraiser Participation”?

Random side-note: I think I will make my very first carrot cake this year for Easter!

Nicole C March 29, 2013 at 1:14 pm

I don’t know if this counts because it was a one time thing. Yesterday at lunch I was in a shopping center parking lot, when I saw an older lady in a motorized wheelchair who had dropped a bag of groceries. So I pulled over to help her pick things up. She said she didn’t need help but hadn’t realized how much she had really dropped. So I picked everything up and waited until she was on the move again.

I don’t donate a percentage to charity, I did it in one lump sum. I had gotten a surprise bonus from work and the timing was eerily perfect. One of my favorite blogs to read had the most inspiring emotional adoption story. So, I read the agencies website and the moment I saw this one particular little girl I knew I had to help. I decided to sponsor her for the year instead of a monthly basis because I had the $. I used every dollar towards helping her. Maybe one day I will use them to adopt, having kids was never something of interest but every adoption story is, so that would be my route to go.

Annette@FitnessPerks March 29, 2013 at 1:55 pm

These are great reminders!

I always give a percentage of my income to those in need. :)

Danielle @ Truffles n' Treadmills March 29, 2013 at 6:32 pm

I have started my own fundraising fund for my aunt who has ovarian cancer. I havent reached near 30 thousand but am so happy with my 2 thousand i’ve raised so far!

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