to the consumer frenzy that has taken over the season.
I've sent five gifts and one of them is for you:
Floresta (Plant with Purpose) - The poorest farmers get the worst land to farm, often steep hillsides vulnerable to erosion. Planting trees
controls erosion and improves soil fertility, leading to better crop
productivity and income. Trees can reduce disease by improving water and air quality. Trees can also provide fruit to eat and wood to use or sell for additional family income, helping to keep families together because men no longer need to leave their
villages to find work to feed their families. Last year, more than 700,000 trees were
Pay it Forward with Goats - Participating families "pay it forward" by giving a pregnant goat to another
rural family. Recipients can generate twice the average per capita income of
$300 by owning a pregnant goat. This program has brought relief to communities.
Some have experienced a 75% decrease in malnutrition rates due to the addition
of protein to their diet. You can help reduce hunger and poverty with the gift
of a pregnant goat.
Protect Rainforests for Indigenous People - Probably no other place is more critical for the survival of humanity
than the Amazon. The Amazon Basin harbors the largest remaining tropical forest
on our planet and plays a key role in global carbon cycles and
climate. Over the last 40 years, one-fifth of the Amazon rainforest has been
cut down, and farms, ranches and roads reach further into it each day. The Nature Conservancy is empowering people to implement
resource management and development projects to conserve 140 million acres of the Amazon by 2015.
Rescue Girls from Forced Prostitution - The horror of sexual slavery is a reality for many helpless women and children. International Justice Mission (IJM) works to
rescue victims of forced prostitution in India and Southeast Asia by gathering
evidence of trafficking and sexual exploitation and collaborating with local
authorities to bring perpetrators to justice. Victims
are placed in aftercare homes where they receive rehabilitation services and begin to
restore their lives. IJM investigations have resulted in convictions for
traffickers and freedom for more than 1,000 girls and women.
Yaks for Youth - In the Tibetan regions of remote western China, orphaned and destitute
children live and learn in rural boarding schools under harsh conditions. High altitude and severe weather make it difficult for schools to
receive needed supplies. Poor nutrition makes it hard for students to
concentrate and increases absences due to illness. Yaks
provide milk, butter, cheese, and yogurt for food, and dung for fuel to
heat stoves for warmth and cooking. There are currently more than 1,150 children attending
the poorest schools on the program’s waiting list.
These are but five of many gifts available.
There are no internal fees or administrative costs withheld and 100% of the gift is passed on to the chosen charities.
They only add $3 to each order (that could include multiple gifts)
As a child, I was an insatiable reader. Before I was 10, I had my own set of hard-bound classics and my face was often buried in one. I could scarcely put it down at the dinner table.
This continued in my teens and twenties. On the weekends, it was not unusual for me to read 10 more pages, another chapter and since it's 4:17 with only 23 pages left so why not just finish the book before 5 a.m.
In my thirties, my weekly treat was a pot of fresh coffee with heavy cream on hand and being left alone to savor the Sunday Los Angeles Times. Saving the Parade magazine for last of course.
I had a giant -- it must have been a good 3" thick and 15" x 17" -- dictionary purchased for $5 from a garage sale. It sat on my living room floor and I'd flip to random pages fascinated by whatever entries were found.