A Peaceful Sky Garden for Continuing Recovery

When you or a loved one is ill, the healing process can be daunting whether it is recovering from the common cold or other times when it requires months of medical treatment and patience. For those times when the healing process is extended, patients find themselves under the care of physicians in sterile, clinical environments. While this atmosphere is necessary to the speedy improvement of health, sometimes smelling the crisp morning air, sitting amongst flowers, or watching the birds play in the sky can help with healing all in its own beauty. [Read more…]

Why Giving Makes Us Happy

While receiving gifts can be exciting, research and experts say that the act of giving could actually make us feel better than receiving.

Studies show that when we get a gift or experience an act of generosity, our bodies release a hormone call oxytocin, which is associated with feelings of love and trust. The presence of this hormone also makes the recipient more likely to also act generously, which could explain the reason for “pay it forward” occurrences. So, it’s no surprise to read then, that numerous studies have shown that spending money on others or making a charitable donation actually makes us happier than when we are on the receiving end.  [Read more…]

Independence Day: The Celebration of Our Freedoms

“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”

On July 4, 1776, our founding fathers signed the Declaration of Independence – an act of bravery that literally could have resulted in their deaths. Founded by valor and rooted in hope and unwavering dedication to freedom – the Fourth of July is a time for Americans to celebrate and appreciate our independence and freedoms. [Read more…]

Charitable Giving is Back and Stronger than Ever

The recession of 2008 hit Americans hard – families were forced to cut back, homes were foreclosed, hardworking people lost their jobs. Budgets got tighter, and charitable giving shrank. Those who were once able to give to a local food bank or a national nonprofit either had to scale back on the amount of their donation or cease altogether. [Read more…]

Flag Day: A Time to Celebrate the Star Spangled Banner

Officially established by President Woodrow Wilson’s proclamation as a national event in 1916 and officially signed into legislation by President Harry S. Truman in  1949,  Americans set aside a day in mid-June to celebrate the national symbol of freedom, the star spangled banner. The week of June 14 is recognized as National Flag Week where we honor the flag by flying it high on the top of buildings, celebrating with parades, and holding special events to recognize the importance of this national emblem.  [Read more…]

Extended Stay Volunteering Across the Globe

Volunteering comes in all shapes and sizes – an hour, a day, a week. But have you ever considered going big? What about two weeks to a month? What about in another country? With so much need in our world today, there are opportunities to lend a helping hand everywhere you turn. [Read more…]

Memorial Day: A Time to Celebrate Those Who Have Fallen and Support Our Veterans and Soldiers

On a holiday often celebrated by being with family at a picnic or taking advantage of store sales – we often lose sight of the very reason we are able to enjoy these special things in life. Memorial Day is a time of year to celebrate and remember those who have fallen, those who have fought, and those who strive to protect our everyday freedoms.

So while you are watching your local parade or firing up the grill, please take a moment to think about the true, deep meaning of the holiday and consider donating time or money to one of these great causes:

Adopt A US Soldier: A nonprofit organization that seeks volunteers to help show the brave men and women fighting for our freedom that their sacrifices will not go unnoticed. It connects supportive civilians with deployed troops and offers a channel by which to communicate encouragement and express gratitude to those brave men and women serving in the United States Armed Forces. [Read more…]

Philanthropy Across Our Nation

When looking at the philanthropic nature of residents of certain states, it’s clear that some of our own 50 are finding ways to make their home state shine.

I recently learned that some states in our country have found ways to go above and beyond for their fellow neighbors. WalletHub, a personal finance site measured states “charitability” against eight main categories including volunteer rate, percentage of taxpayers in each state who donated to charity, the number of public charities per capita, and the growth in charitable giving.

[Read more…]

Starting Your Own Campaign with the Help of Online Tools

So much of our free time these days is spent online. U.S. adults spend almost 43 minutes a day on Facebook alone. We share pictures, thoughts, and messages over these platforms, so why shouldn’t we share a cause over social media, too?

But what does this have to do with being philanthropic? It can be hard devoting time each week to a charity or volunteer organization. It might not be possible to make large donations on a regular basis.  However, it doesn’t mean you can’t help to make a meaningful change in someone’s life just by being an active internet and social media user.

[Read more…]

Why I Love to Volunteer – and You Should, Too!

Some times when we think of philanthropy, our minds immediately jump to big fundraising dinners or the cutting of ribbons at unveiling ceremonies. Big donations. Big commitments. However, making a difference in your community doesn’t always mean writing a check; instead it can be fulfilling our roles as neighbors through the donation of our time and compassion. [Read more…]