Are People in Your Neighborhood Going Hungry?

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43 million Americans are going hungry. Can you tell who in your neighborhood is going without food? 1 in every 8 people you pass by on the street could be missing meals.

The latest statistics on hunger from Feeding America tell us:

  • 1 in 8 Americans go hungry every day.
  • 1 in 6 children in the United States don’t have enough to eat.
  • 1 in 12 seniors in the U.S. struggle to access enough food.

Feeding America provides an interactive map of food insecurity in the United States. Check out your district to see how you compare to others. Is your neighborhood hungry? What can you to do change that? How can we make this better?

food-insecurity-map

Easy Ways to Make a Difference for Hunger

Donate Food. Find a local food bank that’s collecting food. Check their website or call and ask what food items they need, but them and deliver them to the food bank. Make sure to check their hours for accepting donations.

Start a Food Drive. Move for Hunger has great information on how to set up a food drive in your area. Check out their tops, find a great location and get your community involved.

Fundraise. Create an online fundraiser and get others involved in raising money for charities solving hunger issues. You can set one up in minutes on JustGive and post your appeal on social media to get your friends and family involved. When someone asks what’s on your holiday gift list, tell them gifts of charity for the hungry would mean the most to you.

Volunteer. Find a local food banks, soup kitchen or rescue mission serving meals and collecting food.  Find a few and call around to see who can use the help and set up a time to go. Their need is ongoing; offer to help as often as you can.

Give.  There are a lot of nonprofits doing great work to fight hunger, and your donation gives them the ability to do more. It doesn’t take much to make a big impact. We have a short list of recommended hunger charities on the JustGive site, and here are a few examples of what your gift can do:

Let’s take action today and do something for the more than 43 million Americans who don’t have enough food to eat . . . so no one goes hungry.

 

Contributions pour in for victims of the Orlando shootings; here’s how you can help

Thousands gather during the Sunday evening vigil in San Francisco's Castro district to mourn and honor the victims of the massacre at Orlando’s Pulse nightclub. Photo: Gabrielle Lurie, Special To The Chronicle

Thousands gather during the Sunday evening vigil in San Francisco’s Castro district to mourn and honor the victims of the massacre at Orlando’s Pulse nightclub. Photo: Gabrielle Lurie, Special To The Chronicle

In the early hours of Sunday, June 12, a gunman, who has now been identified as Omar Mateen, killed 49 people and wounded 53 more in an attack at the Pulse nightclub in Orlando, Florida. The nightclub is one of the most popular LGBTQ clubs in the city.

As authorities comb through evidence and Matten’s background to determine the why and how’s of the tragic event, millions around the world are mourning the tragic loss of life in what has become one of the deadliest mass shootings in U.S. history. The tragedy has also inspired great acts of charity and kindness from around the nation.

As of Wednesday afternoon, a gofundme campaign to aid the victims of the shooting (families of the deceased and those injured) has raised over $4.5 million dollars. The campaign was started by Equality Florida, statewide organization advocating for gay and lesbian rights. The donations have come from nearly 97,000 individual donors.

Another organization, Lutheran Church Charities based in Chicago, IL, sent their K-9 Comfort Dog Ministry, composed of 12 golden retriever dogs, down to Orlando to comfort first responders, mourners and victims who were hospitalized after the shooting. The canine crew has been working through Trinity Lutheran Church in downtown Orlando, which has an outreach ministry aimed at the local LGBT community.

The Walt Disney Company announced a donation of $1 million to the OneOrlando Fund that benefits non-profits in the community. The purpose of the Fund is to provide a way to respond to the needs of the Orlando community, now and in the time to come, after the effects of the Pulse tragedy.

The National Compassion Fund is also distributing 100% of the funds received directly to victims, which has already totaled over $4 million. Pulse, the nightclub where the shooting took place, has also started an Employee Recovery Fund to provide financial assistance to employees while they are out of work.

JustGive sends our condolences out to all victims and their families of the Orlando shooting. To contribute to any of the above efforts for Orlando, use the links below:

Pulse Victims Fund – GoFundMe
OneOrlando Fund
Pulse Employee Recovery Fund
The National Compassion Fund

– The JustGive Team
http://www.justgive.org

High Magnitude Earthquakes Hit Ecuador and Japan

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It’s Monday morning and rescuers are searching for survivors and missing people in Ecuador and Japan. Over the last few days both countries have experienced high magnitude earthquakes resulting destruction, death and injury.

The island of Kyushu, Japan has been experiencing powerful earthquakes and hundreds of aftershocks since April 14, 2016 when a 6.2-magnitude quake struck the island. The worst the island has felt was a 7.0-magnitude quake on April 16th.  Rescuers in Southern Japan are working to help injured and displaced people while hoping the death toll doesn’t rise higher than its current 42.

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The coast of Ecuador was also hit Saturday, April 16, 2016, with a major 7.8-magnitude quake along the coast. With nearly 300 dead in Ecuador and more than 2,500 injured, rescuers are rushing to find survivors.

It is devastating to see these quakes happening at the same time. Rescue forces are in place.  Please make a donation to support the relief efforts for Ecuador and Japan:

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-Julia Hughes
Product Manager

Working together for Nepal: JustGive and partners raise more than $230k

A Nepalese woman says morning prayers Saturday at a temple in Bhaktapur, Nepal, that was reduced to rubble in the April 25 earthquake. Bernat Armangue/AP

A Nepalese woman says morning prayers Saturday at a temple in Bhaktapur, Nepal, that was reduced to rubble in the April 25 earthquake. Bernat Armangue/AP

Here at JustGive, we’re in a unique position when something tragic like the recent Nepal earthquake occurs. Not only is our website an easy way to make donations to any charity, but JustGive also works with many corporate partners to power their employee and customer giving programs.

Shortly after the 7.8 quake struck Nepal on Saturday April 25, 2015, we mobilized our own team to prepare the justgive.org website for donations. We identified 12 charities providing direct support in Nepal that included the American Red Cross, Doctors Without Borders, World Vision and Save the Children—and placed banners throughout our site to encourage donations.

We also reached out to our corporate partners to facilitate giving programs for their employees and customers.

Discover, through their year-round Discover Giving Site for cardholders, pledged to waive transaction fees on any donations made to The American Red Cross and World Vision through May 30, 2015. If you have a Discover card, visit discover.justgive.org to make a donation today.

REUTERS/Navesh Chitrakar

REUTERS/Navesh Chitrakar

Longtime JustGive partner American Express, for whom we power a giving site for cardholders at membersgive.com, also called out to their members to support Nepal. On the Members Give website, Amex cardholders can donate with dollars, or use their Membership Rewards points to make a donation.

Pointworthy, a JustGive partner that enables consumers to use their loyalty rewards for charitable donations, moved quickly to launch a Nepal giving campaign. On the website, members of the Citibank ThankYou Rewards and Hilton HHonors programs can turn their reward points into a donation to support Nepal.

One of our newest partners, The Hollywood Fund, also mobilized their resources to raise money for Nepal. Hollywood Fund, comprised of a group of media companies including FX Networks, TCM, and Rachel Ray, created a fundraising page to support victims of the quake. The fund then works with its media partners to run online campaigns that drive viewers to the donation page.

Thanks to donors coming through JustGive and our partners’ websites, we have currently collected more than $230,000 in donations specifically designated to support Nepal as it recovers from this devastating quake.

It’s never too late to help. Visit any of the links below to contribute to charities aiding Nepal’s recovery efforts:

JustGive Blog: Help Nepal Earthquake Victims

Discover Giving Site
American Express Members Give
Pointworthy: Donate with Citibank ThankYou Rewards and Hilton HHonors
Hollywood Fund

-Sarah Bacon
Director of Product

An injured girl is carried to a helicopter following the earthquake in Sindhupalchowk, not far from Kathmandu (Danish Siddiqui/Reuters)

An injured girl is carried to a helicopter following the earthquake in Sindhupalchowk, not far from Kathmandu (Danish Siddiqui/Reuters)

THE MANY FACES OF HOMELESSNESS: HOW YOU CAN HELP

blog_title_image_homelessnessKnowing how to help a homeless person can sometimes feel difficult, confusing and overwhelming. The dollar you give might be used to buy drugs or alcohol. Even offering food can be a problem – imagine handing an apple to a homeless man and then discovering he has no teeth. Just as there are many reasons people become homeless, there are also many ways to help. Understanding the leading causes of homelessness is often the best way to learn what the homeless need and how you can make a positive difference in their lives. The chronically homeless, who often struggle with mental health or substance abuse issues, need a safe and stable living environment where they can get counseling and health care. To help them, consider volunteering at a local shelter or halfway house that provides longer-term housing. Donating clean towels, pillows and blankets can also help create a comfortable and safe living environment. The majority of homeless youth bw_homeless_teens_21461332have been kicked out of their homes or abandoned by parents or guardians. Others who left on their own accord have suffered physical and emotional abuse at the hands of their families. For many, trusting another adult or authority figure can be difficult. One of the best ways to help is to simply ask them what they need. Maybe it’s a hot meal, a warm coat or a clean pair of socks; or maybe it’s information on how to get into foster care, enroll in a drug and alcohol detox program or register for the GED. Taking the time to listen to their needs, and to follow through, can go a long way in helping them regain their trust in others and get off the streets. imm needs housing homelessFor many veterans, physical disability, mental anguish and post-traumatic stress can make readjusting to civilian life very difficult. This can lead to drug and alcohol addiction, the inability to hold down a steady job and homelessness. Because many veterans have very specific needs to help them get back on their feet—job placement services, medical services, housing assistance, counseling—there are numerous ways to get involved. Consider donating your time or money to organizations which help homeless vets:

While we need to address the problem of homelessness as a whole, the more we can understand each person’s individual circumstances, the more we can help. Before making assumptions or judgments, take the time to ask some questions and do a little research. It can make all the difference. The Face(s) of Homelessness

  • Number of homeless in the United States: 610,042
  • Number of chronic homeless: 109,132 (18%)
  • Number of homeless youth under 18: 380,000
  • Number of homeless veterans: 57,849 (9%)

For more charities helping the homeless with shelter, counseling services and job training.

-Amelia Glynn, Marketing Contractor

Hunger and Food Justice: Community Building for Food Equality

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Hunger: it’s a daunting problem the world over. Even though I was eager to research and write on this topic, when I started to dig into it, I got more and more overwhelmed with how broad and profound the issue … Continue reading

Help Save Animals—Channel Your Care and Passion into Action.

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We have a 2-year old goldendoodle affectionately known as “Sir Riley Flannigan.” Flannigan for his apricot color, Riley’s a mix of poodle and golden retriever that’s taken a place in my life and heart I could never have imagined.

My family had outside cats and dogs when I was growing up on the farm, but until Riley (who doesn’t shed), my allergies kept me from owning an animal as an adult. Now, sharing every day with such a loving, sensitive, energetic, and smart dog that has comforted me through sadness and sickness– I can’t imagine what kind of person could harm or hurt any companion animal.

We know animals love and remember us, and feel pain and fear. Their eyes and expressions tell us what they can’t say. They’re companions who watch over and protect us. Dogs, in particular, give many humans a new “leash” on life—they guide the blind and visually impaired, improve the lives of autistic children, save diabetics, and give independence to people with disabilities and veterans.

There’s no question our pets miss us when we’re gone—watch Bugaboo show and tell his owner, Lieutenant Gary Daughtery, how happy he is to see him after six months overseas:

 

Honestly, the many types of animal abuse and cruelty—what we know, see, read and hear about—can be overwhelming. I sometimes turn away from TV ads and scroll quickly past Facebook posts because they get to me. And I feel pretty helpless to stop all the abuse. There are a lot of issues to tackle.

How do we move past anger and overwhelm about how animals are treated to help save them? We can start with what we see every day and be their voice—using our passion to take action.

Learn and Recognize Signs of Pet Abuse

Pay attention to the animals around you. Are there any dogs you’ve seen chained up for hours on end? Have you ever walked your dog and witnessed another aggressive, out of control one? Or gone by a house where there are so many animals you worry about their care? These could be signs of neglect or violence.

  • Neglect is denying an animal adequate food, water, shelter (a dog house), medical care (injuries left untreaDogted), clean area, socialization (is the animal aggressive or timid when approached by owner), or chained up in a yard.
  • Violence is deliberately torturing, beating, or mutilating an animal.

Speak Up: Report Abuse

Almost all acts of animal violence or neglect are punishable by law. While animal cruelty laws vary from state to state, 49 states have laws that contain felony provisions. (South Dakota is the only one that doesn’t). Be prepared: Search online at Pets911 or PetFinder’s database to find a local animal control department, animal shelter or humane society in your area—and program the number into your cell phone.

If you suspect abuse or neglect of any animal, report it to your local police department or area animal control agency. If you’re traveling, call the local police department (911).

If you know of dog or cock fighting, call The Humane Society hotline at 1-877-TIP-HSUS and report it.

Donate—Support Organizations Working to Stop the Abuse

According to the ASPCA, every 60 seconds an animal is abused. Put your money where your heart is, and give for the education, protection, and care Stray Kittenof animals. (Consider an ongoing monthly gift.) If you don’t know where to start:

While animal issues may seem staggering and even depressing, you and I can take action to make life better for them—to end suffering and save these amazing creatures, one by one.  And the next time I sit with Riley or get a doggie kiss, I’ll feel good knowing I’m doing something to help precious creatures like him.

-Candy Culver

Marketing Consultant

 

How You Can Help Survivors of Typhoon Haiyan

Super Typhoon Haiyan slammed into six central islands of the Philippines Friday. With sustained winds of 195 miles per hour and wind gusts that reached over 230 miles per hour, Haiyan (known locally as Yolanda) may be the deadliest natural disaster in the nation’s history. It is one of the most intense typhoons ever recorded, leaving massive destruction and killing an estimated 10,000 people. Another 600,000 more people have no place to live.

Entire towns, villages and homes on the Eastern seaboard were ravaged, swept away by the typhoon’s winds and huge waves. Interior Secretary Manual Roxas told Reuters, “From a helicopter, you can see the extent of devastation. From the shore and moving a kilometer inland, there are no structures standing. It’s horrific.”

The stories of children snatched from parent’s arms by the force of the wind and people carried away by rushing water are heart wrenching. We are only beginning to know the details and understand the full extent of the storm. In Typhoon Haiyan’s aftermath, rescue workers are having a hard time getting through to people who are desperately trying to survive.

Charities have quickly responded to provide emergency support, food and clean water, medicine, shelter and more. Please donate now to organizations sending urgently-needed aid to help children and survivors:

Help Colorado Flood Victims Recover

Starting on September 9, the state of Colorado received a huge amount of rain, causing intense flooding and massive amounts of damage. Flood waters cover almost 200 miles from North to South and affect 17 counties. A state of emergency was declared, authorizing federal search and rescue teams, and supplies be sent to the area. The devastation, though, is far-reaching:

  • Nearly 19,000 homes were damaged, and more than 15,000 were destroyed.
  • 1,750 people and 300 pets were rescued by air and ground. Six people were killed.
  • 5,250 gallons of crude oil spilled into the South Platte River when storage tanks in Milliken were damaged.
  • 200 miles of state highways and 50 bridges were destroyed.

Quick repairs are absolutely critical, since winter weather will make highway work far more difficult. Please donate now to organizations helping Colorado recover:

    • American Red Crosssupplying food, shelter, and relief items such as clean up kits, rakes, tarps, shovels, flashlights, gloves, coolers, comfort kits, and insect repellant.
    • Foothills United Way – established the ‘Foothills Flood Relief Fund’ to provide needed health and human services to those affected by the flooding in Boulder and Broomfield counties.
    • Salvation Army – deploying mobile canteens, and is providing hundreds of thousands of meals to displaced people.
    • Save the Children – working with American Red Cross to create “Child-Friendly Spaces” in evacuation centers to ease the trauma on children.
    • Weld County Humane Society – providing assistance to the more than 300 displaced pets rescued by air and ground.

Moore Oklahoma Tornado: Help them recover

On May 20, a massive tornado destroyed parts of Oklahoma City and Moore, Oklahoma, killing 24 people—including seven children. With your help, organizations like the Red Cross and Food Bank of Oklahoma provided immediate disaster relief to people affected.

As relief efforts continue, the recovery process begins. After a week, victims of the tornado are coming to grips with the loss of their homes, along with all their personal belongings. The twister caused up to $5 billion in insured damage, and 1,200 homes were completely destroyed.

While it could be easy to let this disaster fade in our minds as media coverage wanes, rebuilding will take quite awhile. This tornado flattened entire blocks of homes, two schools and a hospital. Imagine losing everything you own in a few short minutes—that’s exactly the reality many people face.

Help the children, families and the community of Moore, Oklahoma rebuild ”normal” life, and donate now to charities working for their recovery. As more information becomes available, we’ll continue to update this list:

  • Adopt a Classroom – helping teachers and students at Plaza Towers and Briarwood Elementary Schools rebuild their classrooms.
  • AmeriCares  assessing and addressing long term health needs.
  • Architecture for Humanity – working with local and regional construction professionals to support the rebuilding.
  • Habitat for Humanity – seeking help with long-term rebuilding efforts and aid for families who need safe, affordable places to live.
  • Matthew: 25 Ministries – continuing to support the families and people of Moore as long as it’s needed.
  • Operation Blessing International – working with The Home Depot to dispatch a construction unit, mobile command center, trucks with tools and supplies, and a team of construction foremen to Moore.
  • Operation USA – making small grants (as funds allow) to community-based organizations as they rebuild.
  • Samaritan’s Purse – focusing on cleaning and repairing damaged homes.
  • Save the Children – providing recovery support for children and families.
  • Team Rubicon – assisting with home repair and rebuilding.