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Non-profit of the Month: One Tail at a Time

After spending some time with different animal shelters, foster programs and animal help clinics, I ran across this organization in Chicago: One Tail at a Time. They are a non-profit foster program that is a no-kill, all-breed dog rescue program. Their mission is to: “lower euthanasia rates in the greater Chicagoland area and provide education on the humane treatment of companion animals. The rescue concentrates its efforts on dogs that are in danger of being euthanized, or those that are physically and/or mentally deteriorating in a shelter environment, works to rehabilitate them, and then matches each dog with a permanent home. Focused on keeping pets as a part of our family, One Tail at a Time offers fosters and adopters continued support and education on how best to keep dogs happy, healthy and part of the family.” Many programs try their best to get the animals adopted, but don’t spend a lot of time to make sure the family is a good fit for the dog or provide the continued support.

Rhett

What is very unique about this dog foster program is they pay for everything a person needs (food, medical, dog walkers, daycare, etc.) to ensure all the dogs in their program are being well taken care of. They also don’t go out and pick the best of the best animals from the shelters for quick adoption turn-around. They find the best in all dogs and try to give as many of them a chance at a better second life. If for some reason the adoption isn’t a good fit, they will take the dog back into their program, in fact they prefer it, to ensure that dog finds the best family for them as possible. Even if years after a dog is adopted and the family can no longer keep the dog, One Tail at a Time will take the dog back into their program and find it a new, happy home. Read More…

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Sole Hope: One Step at a Time

Recently on Twitter I discovered a new organization called Sole Hope (@SoleHope). Their mission: create jobs and shoes for those in need.

It all started with this YouTube video (warning: watch this video with a strong stomach) showing volunteers extracting jiggers from children’s feet in Africa. Jiggers are small sand fleas that enter bare feet and burrow into the skin. If left untreated they can lead to serious infections, paralysis and even amputation. The worst part, all of this could be avoided if people were wearing closed-toed shoes and washed their feet. Asher Collie (founder of Sole Hope) saw the video and it broke her heart. After seeing the pain on the children’s faces, being a mother herself, she couldn’t sit idly by a leave the problem to someone else. She choose to do something about it and in 2010 Asher visited Zambia Africa to see what could be done.

Once realizing how real the problem was she came home and began designing a shoe with friend, and designer, Beth Gaffney. Soon Asher realized that not only could she make shoes for the children, but she could also create jobs by teaching how to make the shoes. Sole Hope’s vision is “to offer hope to widows, orphans and others within impoverished and forgotten communities around the world by teaching the simple trade of shoemaking that provides jobs and shoes for those in need.”Currently Sole Hope provides the much needed shoes and jobs to Uganda and Zambia, Africa, jobs to those in the US, and they just keep growing!

I was lucky enough to be able to interview the founder of the organization, Asher Collie.

Once you realized you wanted to do something about it, how did you get started?

I founded Sole Hope after seeing a video that rocked my world. After learning about jiggers and other parasites entering through the feet of children without shoes I was completely and utterly disturbed by a problem that was impacting the lives of thousands of children in Africa, and was completely preventable. I began to take actions to design a shoe that could be made by men and women in impoverished villages needing work that we could teach them to make and put of the feet of children in their village.

What are some of your future goals and projects you have for Sole Hope?   Read More…

Non-profit of the month: Kiva

As you probably know, Brown Paper Tickets is a ticketing company. We sell tickets all over the world to events and have an unbelievable list (in my opinion) of free services and tools for event producers to put their events together. What you may not be fully aware of is this whole other branch of the company that is very involved in giving back to our communities. This is the realm I am fortunate enough to be immersed in.

One of the most recent additions to our companies giving came from the Marketing and Communications team. The VP of Marketing and Communications, Kelsye Nelson, was given a budget of $25 a month to take her staff out to lunches or coffee, so instead, in the spirit of Brown Paper Tickets, she and her team decided to vote on one person a month who they feel has been rocking their job and exhibits the essence of Brown Paper Tickets. This month I was honoured with their votes, and the grand prize, I get to choose who the money goes to this month at Kiva. Read More…

Giving Challenge and My 10 inches

In the spirit of giving this holiday season I challenge you to find a gift in which you don’t receive anything in return (except maybe a warm fuzzy feeling inside). Think of a way you can volunteer your time at a soup kitchen, wrap presents for homeless kids, donate your old towels to an animal shelter. It can be easy to give BIG to an organization with little effort from you.

After the big cut.

This year one of my big gives was 10 inches of my hair. It may seem like a lot (an believe me, it took me years to build up the courage to do it), but really, it’s just hair and it grows back. Read More…

Get Moving with BPT’s Featured Non-Profit – Girls On The Run

If you’re a runner, you know the powerful effect running can have on a person. Not only is running physically beneficial, it can help you mentally as well. Tired? Having a bad day? Frustrated by something?Need to get out of the house? Work it out with a good jog and you’ll feel better by the end. It’s amazing how a run can give you a new perspective on things. Need an excuse to get out there? How about running to help change lives and benefit communities? 5K events happen almost every weekend and the proceeds go to great community organizations.

This Saturday, December 3rd, is the New Balance Girls on the Run 5k Community run. Women, men, children, leashed pets and all-terrain strollers are welcome to participate! “Girls on the Run of Puget Sound is a non-profit organization whose mission is to inspire girls to be joyful, healthy and confident using a fun experience-based curriculum which creatively integrates running. Since 2002, GOTRPS has operated as an after-school prevention program for 3rd through 5th grade girls throughout Puget Sound.” Read More…

Featured Non-Profit: The Ladybug Project

Fresh out of school, with a dream to change the world, biologist Kim Reuter found herself on a plane to Equatorial Guinea; a country, according to Lonely Planet, “that is usually relegated to live under the staple in map books.” After a brief three months as a field biologist studying monkeys in the rainforest, she realized her mission there was not complete.

She spent the last two weeks of her time in Equatorial Guinea in a small mountain town call Moka where she was welcomed into the local inhabitants homes and lives. “Every time I saw injustice or poverty, I also saw hope. I heard that the country’s high GDP is causing many aid organizations to re-allocate their funding elsewhere, despite the clear need for any and all help. It inspired me to get active. I started to realize that I was so incredibly fortunate; I have never, ever had to worry about health care, water, or education. So I decided that I would try to help others worry less as well.” Read More…

Featured Non-Profit: Brooklyn Speaks

Do you love New York? Me too!

A few weekends ago, I was fortunate enough to visit the Big Apple for the New York Worlds Maker Faire. Everything about the city was exciting; from dodging people at Grand Central Station, to strolling through the neighborhoods at midnight. I loved listening to the variety of languages being spoken on the subways and savoring different culinary flavors on every block. Being surrounded by so much energy and life was revitalizing, to say the least. Read More…