Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Give Back To Others: A List of Local Charities #Charities #Helping


I may have mentioned a few times that I love giving back because I feel that there are so many people out there that have it so much worse that I do.  I am not a saint by any means.  I have many flaws and I like to think that we are ALL a little rough around the edges.

One thing that I have always felt very strongly about is volunteering and helping others.  I am a strong believer that if you show by example, others will follow.  Saying that, I am also a believer that if you give a person a fish it will feed them for a day, teach them to fish and you will give them something more important, self worth.  The ability to be able to provide for yourselves and your families gives a confidence that cannot be taken away.

All year long, I strive to help others even if it is a smile or an encouragement.  I also try and donate time and goods to people in need.  By showing my children that there are good people in this world to offset the bad, I hope to lead by example to make the world  a little bit better.

The one thing that we all have in common with each other regardless of race, religion, political views, beliefs, etc. is that we are all alive. Each of us have needs to survive on Earth. Last year at this time, people were reeling from the devastation of Super Storm Sandy.  There are still people picking up their lives even a year later.  If we all have a little compassion in our own neighborhoods, it will branch out through out the World.

Look around in our communities and see the tragedies and miracles that surround us. People come together to help others, not just for the Holidays but year round.

We think more of the homeless in the Winter months when it's cold and wet outside and we are snug in our houses. Many of these people living on the streets or half-way houses need our help. Many have fallen on bad luck, have health problems, young children, and/or have been abused by the system and others.

When I think of the Holidays, I think of Toys for Tots and Spark of Love. These are local charities that give toys to children who would otherwise have no cheer to open during the holidays! My family and I try to put aside a little money to put a smile on their faces every year.

Money gets me thinking, not everyone can afford to make a gift of money. This doesn't mean that they can't do something for others, it means that maybe they can donate something even more precious, their time. Can we donate an hour of our time to read stories to children at the local library or school? What about seniors that don't have many visitors that could use a cheerful face? Do you have a skill that is in need to help with construction or put on a play?

Everyone of us has something to contribute to others to put a smile on their faces. Helping others really puts a smile on mine! Try smiling at a stranger, you will be amazed at how many people smile back. Then there are also the people who think that we are crazy and keep their children closer because of a simple act of kindness. Keep trying! That person may smile at another stranger and make someone else's day.

I have compiled a list of local charities that are near and dear to many peoples hearts.  I hope that even if you are unable to help by donating money or time, maybe you can donate a smile.

This list is ever growing and I would love for everyone to add to the list. Please email me at Kirstin@SoCalKidsOutdoorAdventures.com your ideas and local charities.

Adoption/Group Homes/Fostercare:
Five Acres
The Orangewood Foundation
Penny Lane
Hillsides
OC FosterCare Auxillary

Animals:
The Wildlife Waystation
The Gentle Barn
Whaleman Foundation
Humane Society of the US
Wolf Mountain Sanctuary

Arts and Literacy:
Milk + Bookies
Adopt the Arts
826 LA
LA Conservancy

Cancer and Other Illnesses:
Leukemia and Lymphoma Society
The Pablove Foundation
City of Hope
St. Judes
The ALS Association
Jesse Rees Foundation
American Diabetes Association

Children:
UNICEF
Make a Wish Foundation
Girls Inc
Ronald McDonald House
Starlight Foundation
The Eli Home
The Boys and Girls Club
March of Dimes
House of Hope
CHOC (Children's Hospital of Orange County)
Children's Hospital of LA 
Shoes that Fit
KPMG (illiteracy)
Huntington Memorial Hospital NICU
Project Sweetpeas (Care packages to families in the NICU)
Autism Speaks

Community:
Assitance League
Soles 4 Souls
CSP (Community Service Programs) of OC
Operation Warm (Coats)
Vision Literacy
Special Olympics
FARE (Food Allergy)
Goodwill of Orange County

Conservation:
Avalon Harbor Underwater Cleanup
Surfrider Foundation
Oceana

Cultural:
The Walking Shield

Elderly:
Senior Serv

Families with Grief After a Child has Passed:
The Unforgettables Foundation
Rainbows
First Candle

Homeless:
Mary's Kitchen
The Lunch Bunch
Good Shepard Center
Roosters Foundation
Working Wardrobes

Holidays:
Toys for Tots
Spark of Love
Operation Christmas Child- US

Individual Fundraisers:
The Ride for Jon
Give Big- in Riverside

Military/Fire/Police:
Am Vets
Fisher House
Operation Gratitude
CHP Widows and Orphans

Mothers in Need:
The Sheepfold
Help a Mother Out
VHI Save the Music

Volunteering:
South Bay Volunteer Center
Big Brothers and Big Sisters

Water Pollution:
Water.org

2 comments:

  1. I will be bookmarking this page. Thank for compiling a list.

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    Replies
    1. You are very welcome! I hope it helps others find a charity that they can believe in. :-)

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