This morning I’m going to be doing something very unusual (for me): I’m being interviewed. On stage. In front of about 300 people. I’m more than a little nervous.
If you’re one of the people who attended this event and now you’re checking out WanderMom.com, thanks for visiting my website. I thought it would be helpful for you to have some of the information that I mentioned today here.
If you’d like to find something to support for the 2012 Microsoft Giving campaign, here’s my answer for what to do:
Find your passion. Find something, a project or a cause that you can be passionate about. Something that you will want to work on in your free time. Something that, if you’re a working parent like me, where there’s already enough claims on your family time, that you can look at yourself in the mirror and honestly say that by doing this charity work you’re teaching your children by example and so, in that, it justifies time spent away from them.
I choose to look for projects in developing countries because I’m all about efficiency and I want to get the biggest bang from each $ raised. $1 spent on education in rural Cambodia goes a hell of a lot further than a $1 in Arkansas. That’s my personal platform. I believe each person has to find his or her own passion and vehicle. If you believe that change at home leads to change further afield, then look for ways that you can be involved in your local community.
I use websites to help me both find projects and research the effectiveness of the charitable organizations such as: charitynavigator.com (US), charitiesdirect.com (UK), www.philanthropy.org.au (APAC), www.charityintelligence.ca (CA).
Sometimes I find it helpful to start on the US site and follow information on partner organizations. Some websites which list charities in a host of countries include: http://www.halftheskymovement.org/, one.org and jolkona.org.
If you are stumped for ideas, I suggest starting with the UN’s Millennium Development Goals. It’s a short list of 8 practical things. Start there, pick your passion and follow the links to find an organization working on that goal in your backyard or the country where you think the need is greatest.
But that’s all strategic stuff. If you want to do something today use the widget at the top of this page to make a donation to pay for an English teacher at the Passports School in Cambodia. Don’t forget to submit a matching donation! (The charity name is American Assistance for Cambodia, http://www.camnet.com.kh/cambodiaschools/AAfC/. Please specify that the donation is for school #468).
The Passports with Purpose 2012 event starts November 27th. We hope to raise $100k to build 5 wells in rural Haiti bringing clean water to 7,400 people – in partnership with Water.org. You can make a donation here or sign up on our mailing list and we’ll email you to let you know when the online fundraiser opens.
If you’re considering starting a charity in the Seattle area, the people at Washington Attorneys Assisting Community Organizations (www.waaco.org) are great to work with.
Thanks again for letting me speak at your event today.