August 29th – A Beautiful Gift

Today’s Task: Calculate the amount of money you haven’t spent this week because you’ve abstained from using one beauty supply (starting on the 22nd, remember?) Now, find a cause that you care about and donate that money that you saved or even more, if you are in a position where you can financially manage it, to that cause. Which action makes you feel better about yourself as a person – using the product(s) or donating the money to a worthy cause? You may not stop using the product(s) in question after this exercise, that doesn’t matter, what’s important is your understanding of the relationship between self esteem and your daily beauty rituals/acts of kindness.

Some Charity Ideas:

  • smallbutbigSmall Can Be Big is an organization that works “closely with case managers to find families who can truly benefit from a one-time charitable donation.” When you go onto the site you can choose a family in need of help to buy a car, escape an abusive relationship, keep the electricity on, keep a roof over their heads, pay off medical bills, and so on. Your gift goes directly to the landlord, hospital, company, etc. that is awaiting their payment and you get to walk away knowing that you’ve been a part of an effort to help a deserving family or individual deal with life’s unexpected difficulties.

 

An example of a family featured on the site: “Music and love hold this family together. They’ve faced trials over the past year that would tear apart any family, let alone a single mom and her three kids. The youngest child, a 3-year-old girl, was diagnosed with autism and lead poisoning from paint in their rented home. Unexpectedly, finding a new, safer home became a priority. Unfortunately, due to the amount of time the medical appointments required, Mrs. S lost her job of 15 years.

With your help and $1,500 by July 31st, Mrs. S will move her family out of harm’s way into a new apartment. Mrs. S has been given much to bear, but she can and will rise above it with the love of her children, her own capabilities and some help from you.”

  • cat_rescueAlley Cat Rescue is an organization that works to protect cats on two levels both locally (“through rescue, rehabilitation and adoption of cats”) and nationally (“through a network of Cat Action Teams.”) Alley Cat Rescue “is dedicated to the health, well-being and welfare of all cats: domestic, stray, abandoned and feral.”
  • If you’re not interested in donating to this organization but you still want to donate to an animal related charity then I would advise looking at Animal Charities of America -for links to many more animal related charities! Some other cool ones include Canine Assistants, Farm Sanctuary, and the National Aviary. (Side-note: I’d advise participants to give a good look to PETA’s highly sexist practices of objectifying  women in order to gain attention for many of their protests before donating any money them. There are many effective and less offensive alternatives to PETA – consider giving them your money instead.)

From their website: “The Center for Reproductive Rights uses the law to advance reproductive freedom as a fundamental human right that all governments are legally obligated to protect, respect, and fulfill.  Reproductive freedom lies at the heart of the promise of human dignity, self-determination and equality embodied in both the U.S. Constitution and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. The Center works toward the time when that promise is enshrined in law in the United States and throughout the world. We envision a world where every woman is free to decide whether and when to have children; where every woman has access to the best reproductive healthcare available; where every woman can exercise her choices without coercion or discrimination. More simply put, we envision a world where every woman participates with full dignity as an equal member of society.”

  • “Action Against Hunger’s 6,000+ field staff work in some 40 countries to carry out innovative, lifesaving programs in nutrition, food security, water and sanitation, health, and advocacy. [Their] programs reach some 5 million people a year, restoring dignity, self-sufficiency, and independence to vulnerable populations around the world.”

If none of these catch your interest Charity Watch is a great research tool that lists many charities, based on their (high) ratings from the American Institute of Philanthropy. It’s a good place to get an idea of different causes you could donate to & find honest and effective charities within that area to donate to!

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