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Posts Tagged ‘Charity’

Sharing Good News!

In Writing (all kinds) on October 27, 2017 at 6:39 PM
Powered By Love is the story of an extraordinary Grandmothers’ movement. It’ll make you gasp, it’ll make you cheer. It will make you proud. It is a must-read of turning the tide of HIV&AIDS. It’s about winning in the face of immeasurable loss. It’s about hope and a powerful international network of activists, each one best known as “Grandma” who are rewriting the future of Africa. — Sally Armstrong, award-winning journalist, author, and human rights activist

Dear Friends,

It’s always wonderful to have the opportunity to share good news with you, our supporters! Powered By Love: A Grandmothers’ Movement to End AIDS in Africa, released October 10, 2017, has been named a National Best-Seller in Canadian and General Non-Fiction (Toronto Star) this week!

Our book launch tour is in full force, but there are still 18 book launches scheduled across Canada! Click here to find the one nearest you. Come and hear directly from some of the 20 African grandmothers and organization partners in Canada for the book launch tour.

CBC Coverage of Powered By Love!

If you missed the CBC feature on The Current with Anna Maria Tremonti with the formidable African grandmothers Miriam Mulindwa [PEFO, Uganda] and Eunice Mangwane [Keiskamma Trust, South Africa] and Canadian grandmother Jo-Anne Page [Toronto Grandmother's Embrace, Canada] click here. It's a terrific segment!



You can order the book on Amazon.ca or Indigo or get it in your local bookstore.
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The Black Family Foundation Establishes Research Fellowship at the Peter Munk Cardiac Centre

In Beauty, book reviews, Business, cars, Contact Information, Creative Writing, Culture, Disability, Education, Entertainment, Environment, Events, Health, Home Decor, Living, Media Writing, Movie Reviews, Music, Opinion, Radio Podcasts, Religion, Restaurant Reviews, Sports, Technology, travel, Uncategorized, Video Work, Writing (all kinds) on January 22, 2013 at 3:00 AM

Donation will fund Canada’s first research Fellowship for Vascular Surgery and Interventional Radiology

TORONTO, Jan. 4, 2013 /CNW/ – The Black Family Foundation (BFF) has made a $1 million donation to establish The Black Family Vascular Surgery-Interventional Radiology Research Fellowship in support of the Peter Munk Cardiac Centre at University Health Network. The integrated Fellowship is the first of its kind in Canada, combining training in both Interventional Radiology (IR) and Vascular Surgery (VS). Read the rest of this entry »

T’is the Season to Care

In Beauty, book reviews, Business, Contact Information, Creative Writing, Culture, Education, Entertainment, Environment, Events, Health, Living, Media Writing, Technology, travel, Writing (all kinds) on December 13, 2012 at 3:00 AM

Canadians Encouraged to Take the Caregiving Challenge,

Demonstrate Which City is Most Caring Community in Canada

 

December 10, 2012 –  T’is the season to care, so why not do something nice for a caregiver in your life – and tell the rest of Canada about it?  The Canadian city with the most residents who share their do-good stories will be deemed the most caring community in Canada. Read the rest of this entry »

Salvation Army Christmas Kettle Campaign Surpasses Goal, Raises Record $20 Million

In Beauty, book reviews, Business, Contact Information, Creative Writing, Culture, Education, Entertainment, Environment, Events, Health, Living, Media Writing, Religion, Technology, Writing (all kinds) on January 5, 2012 at 3:00 AM

Image result for Salvation Army

TORONTO, Jan. 4, 2012 /CNW/ – This Christmas, donors across Canada helped support The Salvation Army’s efforts to reduce poverty nationwide by donating more than $20 million to the annual Kettle Campaign. Funds raised in the nearly 2,000 kettles in stores, on street corners and online, will be used to support programs that help restore hope and dignity to more than 1.7 million each year throughout the country.

“We’re incredibly grateful for the overwhelming generosity that helped us fill the kettles this year,” said Graham Moore, Territorial Secretary for Public Relations and Development for The Salvation Army in Canada. “Meeting and surpassing our ambitious $19 million goals will help us meet the increased demand for our services and provide a sense of dignity for all throughout 2012.”

This year marked the 120th anniversary of The Salvation Army’s Christmas Kettle Campaign and the more than $20 million raised surpassed an all-time record. In addition to physical kettles located on street corners and shopping centres across the country, donors also had the option to give online at http://www.FilltheKettle.com.

“We owe the success of this year’s campaign to everyone who donated, the thousands of volunteers who manned our kettles and the various malls, retail stores and shopping centres that welcomed us in this Christmas,” said Graham Moore. “Without this support, we would not be able to raise the funds needed to address the dehumanizing scourge of poverty throughout the upcoming year.”

The Salvation Army Christmas Campaign helps provide direct, compassionate, hands-on service to more than 1.7 million people in Canada each year. This annual campaign has grown into one of Canada’s most significant and recognizable charitable events. Last year, more than $18 million was raised in kettles nationwide. The Salvation Army relies on the support of numerous corporate partners, including Walmart and Loblaw Companies Limited, which allow Christmas Kettles to be placed in their stores each year.

About The Salvation Army:

The Salvation Army is an international Christian organization that began its work in Canada in 1882 and has grown to become the largest non-governmental direct provider of social services in the country. The Salvation Army gives hope and support to vulnerable people today and every day in 400 communities across Canada and more than 120 countries around the world. The Salvation Army offers practical assistance for children and families, often tending to the basic necessities of life, providing shelter for homeless people and rehabilitation for people who have lost control of their lives to an addiction. When you give to The Salvation Army, you are investing in the future of marginalized and overlooked people in your community.

News releases, articles and updated information can be found at http://www.SalvationArmy.ca

Walmart Canada Fill the Kettle Day a Resounding Success

In Beauty, book reviews, Business, Contact Information, Creative Writing, Culture, Education, Entertainment, Environment, Events, Health, Living, Media Writing, Technology, Writing (all kinds) on December 23, 2011 at 5:23 PM

Generous Canadians donated more than $170,000 to The Salvation Army

Image result for The Salvation army

TORONTO, Dec. 23, 2011, /CNW/ – On December 22, Walmart Canada hosted the second Walmart Fill the Kettle Day and individual Canadians responded by donating more than $170,000 to Salvation Army Christmas kettles located in Walmart stores across the country. Walmart Canada matched with a corporate donation of $100,000, resulting in a total raised of more than $270,000.

With a soft economy still affecting donations to The Salvation Army’s Christmas Kettle Campaign, Walmart Canada announced on Wednesday that it would once again help with its second Walmart Fill the Kettle Day. On Thursday, December 22, Walmart Canada agreed to match donations made by individuals to Salvation Army Christmas kettles located in its stores nationwide up to a maximum of $100,000.

“The Salvation Army continues to be amazed at the generosity of everyday Canadians and companies like Walmart Canada,” said Graham Moore, Territorial Secretary for Public Relations and Development for The Salvation Army in Canada. “Walmart Canada continues to remain an invaluable supporter of The Salvation Army and Walmart Fill the Kettle Day was yet another example of their ongoing help.”

Walmart Canada has become a strong supporter of The Salvation Army over the past number of years. Since 2007, Walmart Canada and its customers have donated $7 million to The Salvation Army, helping to provide food, shelter, and clothing for families that live below or at the poverty line.

The 2011 Christmas Campaign helps The Salvation Army provide direct, compassionate, hands-on service to more than 1.7 million people in Canada each year, restoring hope and dignity to the most vulnerable in society. The Salvation Army’s annual Christmas Campaign has grown into one of Canada’s most significant and recognizable annual charitable events. Last year, more than $19 million was raised in the Christmas kettles nationwide. The Salvation Army relies on the support of numerous corporate partners, including Walmart Canada and much more, all of which allow Christmas kettles to be placed at their storefronts each year.

Donations to the 2011 Christmas Campaign can be made at http://www.SalvationArmy.ca, by calling 1-800-SAL-ARMY (725-2769), at your local kettle, or via mail to The Salvation Army, 2 Overlea Blvd, Toronto, ON M4H 1P4.

Donors can also support the 2011 Christmas Campaign by texting HOPE to 45678 from most mobile carriers in Canada. A $5 donation will be added to your monthly mobile bill.

About The Salvation Army:
The Salvation Army is an international Christian organization that began its work in Canada in 1882 and has grown to become the largest non-governmental direct provider of social services in the country. The Salvation Army gives hope and support to vulnerable people today and every day in 400 communities across Canada and more than 120 countries around the world. The Salvation Army offers practical assistance for children and families, often tending to the basic necessities of life, providing shelter for homeless people and rehabilitation for people who have lost control of their lives to an addiction. When you give to The Salvation Army, you are investing in the future of marginalized and overlooked people in your community.

Happy Holidays from Dignitas International

In Beauty, book reviews, Business, Contact Information, Creative Writing, Culture, Education, Entertainment, Environment, Events, Living, Media Writing, Religion, Technology, travel, Writing (all kinds) on December 19, 2011 at 10:10 AM

DI Holiday Ecard 2011

[TPS] – Retired TPS officer (and renowned landscape painter) lends talent to United Way drive, Tuesday, October 25, 2011, 7 a.m. – 7 p.m., Headquarters, lobby‏

In Beauty, book reviews, Business, Contact Information, Creative Writing, Culture, Education, Entertainment, Environment, Events, Health, Living, Media Writing, Technology, Writing (all kinds) on October 26, 2011 at 11:06 AM

Image result for United Way

Toronto Police Service
News Release

Retired TPS officer (and renowned landscape painter) lends talent to United Way drive, Tuesday, October 25, 2011, 7 a.m. – 7 p.m., Headquarters, lobby

Tuesday, October 25, 2011 – 5:00 AM
Corporate Communications
416-808-7100

A retired TPS police officer is returning to headquarters for one more day at the office to support a good cause.

Internationally recognized painter Tim Packer, who left the TPS in 2000 after 18 years’ service, is using his artistic talent to make a contribution to help the Service reach its 2011 United Way campaign fundraising target of $655,000.

On Tuesday, October 25, 2011, in the headquarters lobby, Tim Packer will create an oil painting that will be auctioned to the highest bidder, with proceeds will go to the United Way campaign.

“We were delighted when the offer was made,” fundraising committee member Sharon Cairns said. “It was like music to our ears. This is a fantastic gesture for a great cause.” Ottawa’s Koyman Galleries, which represent Packer, have already opened the bidding at $2,000. “As you can see, the bar has already been set high,” Cairns said. “One of his paintings, of the size he’s doing for us, normally retails for around $4,000, so we’re hoping that the piece will fetch much more.”

Packer will arrive at headquarters at the crack of dawn to set up his easel and canvas. He has committed to staying as long as it takes to produce the original oil-on-canvas piece, which will be either 30” x 40” or 36” x 36”.

“I know from past experience that, when I paint in this type of situation, there is a heightened sense of focus and excitement that allows me to paint with much greater intensity than usual, for much longer, and often with stunning results,” Packer said. “I am confident that the piece will be completed before I leave headquarters on the night of October 25.”

The bidding runs from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Tuesday, October 25, 2011. Bidding can be done in person at 40 College Street, or by phone at 416-808-8930. Limited-edition reproductions of Packer’s work will also be on sale during the day at a 10% discount, with 10% of all sales going to the United Way.

Packer’s unique style draws on the deep traditions of Canadian landscape painting, while interpreting the world through a modern eye. His bold oils rely on a strong sense of design and the abstract patterns found in the natural world, often combined with a dramatic light condition.

The George Brown College Graphic Design graduate, whose work can be found in many private and corporate collections, made history four years ago by becoming the first artist to sell over $10,000 worth of paintings at the McMichael Canadian Collection annual autumn sale in Kleinburg. He broke the record a year later, achieving sales of close to $20,000.

Packer, who lives in Whitby with his wife and two children, is the president of the Oshawa Art Association, a past-president of the Canadian Society of Painters in Watercolour and a senior signature member of the Canadian Society of Portrait Artists. Click here to visit Tim’s website.

Constable Wendy Drummond, Corporate Communications

There are no files attached to this release.

Final days for Canadians to double their donation to the Horn of Africa

In Beauty, book reviews, Business, Contact Information, Creative Writing, Culture, Education, Entertainment, Environment, Events, Health, Living, Media Writing, Technology, travel, Writing (all kinds) on September 17, 2011 at 10:39 AM

Image result for UNICEF

UNICEF racing against time to scale up famine relief for children and families

September 14, 2011 @ 06:20PM

TORONTO – Despite its slow build, the crisis in the Horn of Africa has reached a critical point with 750,000 people at risk of dying in the coming months – more than twice the number in July. UNICEF continues to scale up efforts to deliver life-saving aid across Kenya, Somalia, Ethiopia, and Djibouti, but it is a race against time. UNICEF is appealing to all Canadians for support during the final days of the government match for the Horn of Africa – an opportunity for the nation to double its impact to help children and families in need.

“Canadians have not forgotten about malnourished children on the other side of the world, and their generosity has enabled us to provide supplies and services to children who would have died without it,” said David Morley, President, and CEO, UNICEF Canada. “However, we need to act now to save more lives. We’re calling on all Canadians to help now – before the famine in Somalia spreads further and while the Canadian government is matching donations.”

The Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA) is matching individual donations for the Horn of Africa until September 16 to help the 13.3 million people in need of urgent humanitarian assistance.

UNICEF is the leading supplier of therapeutic foods in the Horn of Africa and works to quickly assess and treat malnourished children. In most cases, the bicep of a severely malnourished child is often no more than the size of a Twoonie. These malnourished children are given immediate treatment with therapeutic milk and Ready-to-Use Therapeutic Foods (RUTF) such as Plumpy’Nut®, a high impact peanut paste fortified with essential vitamin and minerals. Once treated, a child can recover fully.

When 3-year-old Aden left his famine and conflict-stricken community in Somalia for the Dadaab refugee camp in Kenya, his 5 kg body was perilously close to shutting down. Aden received treatment at the stabilization centre upon his arrival, and over the course of weeks, he grew stronger, improving in small increments each day. Now he eats solid foods and is able to stand with support for a few seconds at a time. Some 190,000 children in Somalia are like Aden, and UNICEF and partners are rapidly scaling up operations to reach every child.

By mid-August, UNICEF delivered close to 4,000 metric tons of life-saving supplies to the hardest hit and hardest-to-reach areas of Somalia alone. The 800 feeding centres across Somalia, including 500 in the south, assist 35,000 malnourished children monthly. Plans are underway to more than double efforts to reach 100,000 children.

The magnitude of the crisis requires UNICEF to be creative and find fast and innovative ways – at scale – to prevent more children from dying. UNICEF is also complementing food assistance with food vouchers and cash transfers to reach all in need.

Canadians can support UNICEF’s emergency efforts in the Horn of Africa by donating online at unicef.ca, calling 1 800 567-4483, or texting GIVE to 45678 to donate $10. Donations will go a long way:

$50 donation will supply 100 packages of Plumpy’Nut®
$100 will supply 40 sachets of therapeutic milk
$250 will supply food relief bundles of over 200 Plumpy’Nut® packages and 3,571 High Energy Biscuits which are rich in protein
$500 will supply 11,904 High Energy Biscuits

In emergency response, UNICEF is a leader in inter-agency relief efforts to treat malnourished children, provide maternal and child health services, prevent the spread of disease, improve access to clean water and sanitation, safeguard education, and protect vulnerable children.
Boilerplate

About UNICEF

UNICEF is the world’s leading child-focused humanitarian and development agency. Through innovative programs and advocacy work, we save children’s lives and secure their rights in virtually every country. Our global reach, unparalleled influence on policymakers, and diverse partnerships make us an instrumental force in shaping a world in which no child dies of a preventable cause. UNICEF is entirely supported by voluntary donations and helps all children, regardless of race, religion or politics. For more information about UNICEF, please visit unicef.ca.

The Lighthouse of Montreal North to provide hundreds of meals a week

In Beauty, book reviews, Business, Contact Information, Creative Writing, Culture, Education, Entertainment, Environment, Events, Health, Living, Media Writing, Religion, travel, Writing (all kinds) on May 1, 2011 at 3:00 AM

The Lighthouse of Montreal North – Photo Courtesy of Google Images

April 30, 2011 @ 02:00PM

Montreal North – The official opening of the Lighthouse of Montreal North, a community restaurant, and food bank, took place today in the presence of a federal member of parliament Denis Coderre.

The Lighthouse of Montreal North plans to provide hundreds of meals a week to people from Montreal North who find themselves in need. The idea for the project came out of the community’s desire to have a place that could provide food at no cost. This initiative comes at a time when 17 percent of adults in Montreal North find themselves living on social assistance.

“Whether it’s to help them out of a temporary bind or to give them something more long-term, the Lighthouse of Montreal North will be there. We want to support those who are in financial straits and help them better their situation. We also want to let people know that there are some positive things taking place in Montreal North,” said Pastor Mario Catalano of the Emmanuel Pentecostal Christian Church, who spearheaded the initiative.

The Lighthouse of Montreal North’s mission is to offer assistance to people of all religions and backgrounds who find themselves in need. Warm and welcoming, it will treat people with the dignity they deserve. “The Lighthouse of Montreal North is a place where people can feed both body and soul. They will find something to eat, but they’ll also get some attention, meet some friendly folks and be at the centre of a great community project,” added Pastor Roberto Angelone, who has been responsible for the endeavour.

Supported entirely by donations and a group of 80 volunteers, the Lighthouse of Montreal North, will be offering breakfasts and lunches, from Monday to Friday. The food bank will be open on Fridays.

The Lighthouse of Montreal North is located at 11,835 Langelier Blvd, near the corner of Maurice Duplessis Blvd.
Quotes

“Whether it’s to help them out of a temporary bind or to give them something more long-term, the Lighthouse of Montreal North will be there. We want to support those who are in financial straits and help them better their situation. We also want to let people know that there are some positive things taking place in Montreal North.”

Pastor Mario Catalano, Emmanuel Pentecostal Christian Church

“The Lighthouse of Montreal North is a place where people can feed both body and soul. They will find something to eat, but they’ll also get some attention, meet some friendly folks and be at the centre of a great community project.”

Pastor Roberto Angelone, Emmanuel Pentecostal Christian Church

From Organizing People’s Homes to Organizing People’s Lives: The Sanctuary

In Beauty, book reviews, Business, Contact Information, Creative Writing, Culture, Disability, Education, Entertainment, Environment, Events, Health, Home Decor, Living, Media Writing, Opinion, Religion, Writing (all kinds) on January 2, 2011 at 7:00 AM

Photo Courtesy of The Sanctuary Website

“I’ve been good,” says Nada Thomson, Director of Development at The Sanctuary Mission. “It’s been an adjustment period. There is so much emotional stress every day. So you’re better for it.”

The Sanctuary is a healthy or wealthy community that is embodied for the poor. It is open to all belief systems and all ethnic backgrounds. The community is made up of men and women from 25 to 55. Five hundred faces every week and annually in the thousands.

“We have street outreach, a relationship with them simply through our outreach team, jail visits, outreach visits, Children’s Aid, court visits,” says Thomson. “We help to get their kids into safe homes. Just as you would walk with your family and friends. We have a health clinic and a psychiatrist, or substance abuse rehab or physical rehab for their body, or all of those things – we walk with them along with that. We have meals and it is their friends [who prepare them], it is not a soup kitchen.”

Nada Thomson started out as a Personal Organizer with her own company called Artful Organizers. She made the transition into helping the poor around 2006.

“I hung out in the building from 2006 to 2008. There was a woman who was helping out in the kitchen and she was afraid to go out to the eating area so she worked in the kitchen. She realized that everyone that she was working within the kitchen was waking up in an alley or had a mental illness, or had just gotten out of jail. They had a life of adversity and were dealing with huge adversities to get over alone – that’s why we’re here community.”

Every year, The Sanctuary has a great Christmas feast with candles and in the galley with huge windows. They have had a church donate some Christmas gift bags and they do have talent shows and they do a play – the Screaming Monkeys. They do a big walk in the summertime.

“It is really important that people know that when they donate money, they can participate. The rich and the poor, we want to blur the lines. People who have been stripped of their dignity will be given back their dignity. Making a difference is more about just giving money and also making new friends.”
Thomson was brought on as the donor relations person, the Director of Development.

“I do street outreach and all the staff do it, I have people in the community who I walk very closely with. We’re not counseling, we’re like friends. You have a deeper affinity for certain people than others, there are many people so there is a great balance.”

Seventy percent of the balance of the operating budget is from people who work, then 30 percent is from the Trillium Foundation and other foundations. Thomson is there to be a liaison and always looking for donors.

“We’re not here to replace social services, we’re here to walk along social services,” Thomson says. “We have friends who were living on the street and they are now living inside. They would not be able to do this without someone to help them look for a place and help them get furniture.

‘We have employment training, we’re revamping it. Meaningful gainful employment for people. We have to house for men that are not rooming houses where they have meals together and there are no locks and they went from the street to the sanctuary home – we would love to do that for hundreds of people.”

It was late 2005 and early 2006 and Thomson was feeling a real connection to do something meaningful in Toronto.

“I needed to find something. I started looking for a place to go for church. I went to one which was doing something with Sanctuary. I started coming down to the Thursday night drop-ins and I could play cards. They have a church service in the evenings on Saturdays. I fell in love with the whole place and the people. You do not come here trying to cover yourself up, you strip away all the layers of how messy our lives are. To be broken and not quite on top of things as I am. In a few years, they [The Sanctuary] were in the position to bring on someone like me and then I was a good fit.”

When Thomson had Artful Organizers it was an amalgamation of all her professional skills that she had gone to Sheridan for.

“I was doing decorating and home staging too. I loved the people that I worked with and the variety. It was very successful without ever needing to do so. Word of mouth is very much the best part of advertising. There was always a part of me that felt a bit of a fraud. It was very successful. There was always a part of me that made me feel as though people would catch me out in the rouse. I was able to breathe at The Sanctuary. I’ve maintained amazing friendships with many of my [former] clients. When I changed, it was a huge adjustment, realizing how much of my life was doing for others, rather than being cared for by others. You cannot let yourself care for them, without being cared for by them. They see the strain in my eyes and they will care for you when they live in an alley. Every day being forced to be vulnerable, to be forced, to be honest. We have staff meetings all the time, we say how are you? We have to be honest. I’m single and childless and I was flitting from house-to-house but it was superficial. My clients were really wonderful people, but there is a season for everything and I did not know how to have depth in relationships and I’m learning that here.”

One of the success stories of The Sanctuary is that a young woman was born and raised in the Toronto area. Not too soon after she was born, she was put into foster care. Her aunt set her crib on fire. Her grandmother found her covered in cockroaches. She was sexually abused. She bounced from foster home to foster home and relationship to relationship, and she was addicted to many things. She has also used her body. Many people helped her. She has been a regular at Sanctuary for four years.

“It was our nurses at health care that helped her get a better life, a couple of years ago she got her GED she has her own business called Pause for Paws and when I first met her she was angry and now she’s clean and fresh and she’s pretty,” says Thomson. “She takes pictures of animals. They may be different, a transition takes a long time. People who feel that they don’t deserve the air that they are breathing. We are committed to these people for as long as they live. We can offer them some real dignity building amenities. Even if we did not have the funding, we would not be able to reach new people, but we would not abandon the people who are here already. Such a small number of our friends see that kind of change in their lives, but everyone who comes through these doors sees a kind of change in their lives.”

Thomson has made a real shift from helping to organize people’s homes to helping to organize their lives.

“The organizing was a broad range. I would go into some rooms that I would barely be able to open the door it would be so crammed full. Is it staying in the home, would it belong to someone else. There were emotional issues of other people’s things. The most part it was the attachment to the person that they thought of with the thing. To know that the person will still love you with the item gone.

“Other situations it was a basement that was finished and they wanted a play area, a workout zone and making the space planning. I had other clients have I helped them change them over their cupboards and also kitchen organizing. Helping things flow better. Making spaces better places. I would Rearrange the furniture, shake the whole place up so it felt the whole place had been redone. Using what they have. Reworking the space to get the vision of the whole home. What furniture to get, what colours – colour consultations. The organizing and the rearranging decorating…then there was the home staging. I could help people decide what people were keeping and leaving and sometimes we rented furniture and artwork. In each case, a big case of what I was doing was getting to know my clients. Some people wanted to mimic other designer’s styles, that’s not what I did – it was working with how a couple’s voice could be morphed and find new pieces to build relationships. I went from relationship building to relationship building.

“We can pour out all of our time and tender-loving care and unless the person is not in receivership, it goes nowhere. It’s not about four walls and a roof. A lot of stuff got them onto the street and a lot is needed to keep them off the street. It is amazing how vulnerable we are and how little it takes to destroy the heart of a child. When people become too old for the Yonge Street Mission, they come up here and they’re young and they’re beautiful, but they break my heart.”

Be Wary of Charity Scams

In Business, Contact Information, Creative Writing, Culture, Disability, Education, Entertainment, Environment, Events, Living, Media Writing, Technology, Writing (all kinds) on April 21, 2010 at 9:41 AM

Sarina Adamo Writes about Charity Scams – Photo Courtesy of Dreamstime.com

Sarina Adamo - April 21, 2010

SCAMMING CHARITIES
Online Piece #10
Sarina Adamo

The RCMP are warning all Canadians to be wary when donating to charities – they could be swindling you.

As those are feeling the urge to donate to Haiti relief efforts, many fraud artists have emerged to take advantage of these generous few.

Before contributing to a cause consider the following:
– Ask for written information about the organization like its name, address and telephone number
– Find out how your donation will be used
– Ask for proof of your donation to use for tax deduction purposes
– Ask for the registered charitable tax number of the charity
– Confirm the charity is registered by calling Canada Revenue Agency at 1-800-267-2384
– Ask the solicitor for identification, if he or she cannot provide one do not continue talking with them. Immediately report the incident to law enforcement officials
– Double check the name of the charity as some fraudulent charities use names very similar to reputable organizations
– Be suspicious of those who thank you for a pledge you do not recall making

To report any incidences contact your local police force. You may also file a complaint by calling the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre at 1-888-495-8501.

Source:

Email Press Release
THINGS TO KNOW ABOUT CHARITY SCAMS AND WHERE TO LODGE A COMPLAINT‏
From: 43division@www.torontopolice.on.ca

To Give or Not to Give

In Beauty, Business, Contact Information, Creative Writing, Culture, Education, Entertainment, Environment, Events, Health, Living, Media Writing, Opinion, Writing (all kinds) on January 26, 2010 at 6:01 AM

Mikaya Heart Discusses Charity – Photo Courtesy of Dreamstime.com

Mikaya Heart - January 26, 2010

By Mikaya Heart

As someone who has worked hard to make the world a better place, I have tried to share with others not so fortunate. One day I gave some money to a family who didn’t have enough to eat. The man of the family used the money to buy a gun and then threatened his wife with it. Was it my responsibility what he did with the money I gave him? I felt it was, and ever since then, I’ve been very careful who I give to.

On a broader level, I recently heard from someone who has been working with refugees in Africa for years. He’s been helping to rebuild their village so that they can go back there. Meanwhile, the families have been living in makeshift shelters, and are being supplied with food. Now the village is finished they don’t want to go back because they will have to work for their living instead of getting hand-outs.

Sometimes I’m suspicious of motives for giving to charity. People often feel guilty about being well off, and giving to others assuages their guilt, as well as feeding their egos. It temporarily fills a gap in their own souls so that they don’t have to examine the reason for their greed or their need to grasp at the illusion of security. Perhaps it makes them feel superior—in which case, the recipients of their charity are bound to feel that, and while they may take the food and money that they need, they are going to feel angry. Understandably so—from their point of view it is merely an accident of birth that they are recipients instead of donors, and the argument that Western affluence is built on backs of the poor has considerable validity.

This world and its people are always in a process of evolution. Every culture has its own collective unconscious, and evolution of a culture requires a change in the collective unconscious of that culture, which means a change in the way the individuals of the culture think. With the advent of television and the Internet, these changes are happening faster than ever before, but they still take generations. In the end, although a culture’s evolution (or otherwise) has global implications, giving money cannot hurry the process. Education may do so, as long as it’s done with respect.

So am I saying that we in the West can all just sit back and consume to our heart’s content, never concerning ourselves with the rest of the world? No, certainly not. First of all, I see it as vital that we send our energy wherever it is needed, to those in need. That might be Haiti after an earthquake, it might be the Battered Women’s Refuge down the road, it might be a local library, it might be the Suicide Hotline, it might be picking up garbage on the street. The form of energy might be financial, it might be work, it might be sending prayers, it might be consciously sending love. What works for you is what works for you. It is important that all of us understand we are all connected and we can’t live in a vacuum. Which brings me to my second point: privilege brings with it responsibility, and we who are living in privilege need to face that honestly. Taking responsibility means living with integrity, treating this planet and all the beings on it with respect. For many people, that requires radical changes in the way they live their lives. Unthinking consumerism has a price—a huge one. I’m not just talking about the environment here, I’m talking about souls and hearts. It’s important to partake in a cycle of giving and receiving. Sure, having money is great. It isn’t what creates change. We can improve the quality of life on the planet most effectively by changing our own lives on a deep internal level, learning to live respectfully. That’s what radiates outwards.

Take a long, honest look at your own life. Where does the money that you are giving to charity come from? Are you investing in stocks that support the war? Put your money where it is supporting good causes. If it means you have less and you don’t give to charity—at least you know you’re doing some good in the world. Are you working at a job that wears you out so you’re unhappy? Get a job that pays less and makes you smile. You may have no money to give away, but you will be bringing joy into the world. Ask yourself some real questions about your motivations in life and you need to have. Maybe if you could do with a lot less, you’d be giving in a very real way. Look beyond the need to be normal, to do what you are meant to do, to be perceived as successful by others. What makes you feel successful inside? That may have nothing to do with society’s judgments.

I’m not encouraging people to be martyrs. Don’t give up what you need to be comfortable. But let’s go beyond superficial possession of external things. The meaning of the phrase charity begins at home is profound. Look for a sense of fulfillment that comes from inside. It has nothing to do with ownership or money, it’s about a satisfaction that flows from the heart, that comes from knowing you are living a compassionate and respectful life, contributing to the highest good of all.

That knowing of one-ness is not for sale.

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