Charity of the Day
The Campaign for Mayo Clinic is nearing the end of its five year mission to raise over a billion dollars for continued patient care, research and education. The largest non-profit practice group in the world, the Mayo Clinic is preparing for extensive Medicare cuts and other reductions in government reimbursement for medical care. The campaign began in 2005 with a significant leadership gift of $25 million from the CEO of Marriott International, Bill Marriott, whose daughter was cared for at the Mayo Clinic in the 1960s.
The campaign recently surpassed the $1 billion mark but has a bit further to go to reach its ultimate goal of $1.25 billion by the end of 2009. Most gifts have come from former patients, but the Clinic's development staff hopes that its call to the general public in May will help the Campaign meet its goal on time.
Gallery: Wine For A Cause
The Clinton Foundation has recently concluded its philanthropy tour of Africa, where the former President worked tirelessly to reduce treatment costs for malaria and spoke in support of public health efforts to reduce the incidence of HIV/AIDS among children. He also helped celebrate the opening of a $1 million, 180-bed hospital in Rwanda. The foundation's Travel to Africa Blog followed Clinton on his multiple stops throughout the continent between the end of July and August 6 and includes video of some of Clinton's speeches during his visit.
Bill Clinton established his eponymous foundation during his second term as President. The foundation has grown to support programs focused on combating climate change, HIV/AIDS and other health concerns and childhood obesity.
In addition to its fundraising efforts, ninemillion.org serves as a virtual bulletin board, where kids in refugee camps in Uganda or Thailand post their stories and visitors to the website can see their pictures.
Inspired by the group's mission, 19-year old Dashiel Alsup started a walk across America -- barefoot -- to show his support. Dashiel, who goes by the dead-on nickname Dash, has already logged 1600 miles to raise awareness for Soles 4 Souls. You can read about his progress on his blog, A Single Pebble. Dash sort of makes me feel all lazy and selfish inside, so I'm going to send in a pair of shoes. No, two pairs!
A came across this organization when writing about Pippa Small's jewelry and thought I just had to include it in our Charity of the Day series. Survival International's mission is to protect tribal people's land and culture across the globe from encroaching governments and corporations whose expansion may very well wipe out these native populations. These secluded communities won't be able to preserve their way of life if other ambitious parties are not held in check. Support for this organization is possible through active participation such as sponsoring events, writing letters or becoming a campaigner (joining Richard Gere and Pippa Small as well) or through various levels of donations. Their website does a fantastic job of sharing their cause and enlightening those of us who wouldn't have known the depths of this struggle otherwise.
Minnesota Mom Jill Youse started sending her own breast milk to Africa in 2006, soon after which she began helping other moms around the country do the same through her organization, the International Breast Milk Project (IBMP). In just the past couple of years IBMP has successfully shipped over 85,000 pounds of milk to infants in Africa, primarily babies fighting illnesses that often abate when breast milk is introduced. Youse set up a program for women who have suffered the loss of an infant through the Madison Cassady Program , so that grieving mothers who still had milk stored in their freezers didn't have to throw it all away. Also distributed in the U.S. to children born prematurely or whose mothers cannot produce milk, donations are made easy for moms. Coolers and the necessary equipment arrive shipped to their doors and are later picked up and sent to babies in need. Even FedEx has chipped in to provide transport for the mothers' milk. Recognized as one of "Earth's Mothers" by Oprah Winfrey a little over a year ago, Youse and IBMP are revolutionizing how new moms think about breastfeeding, convincing them to add a few more mouths along the way.
Lighthouse International was founded in 1905 in New York and they currently have locations in Manhattan and Westchester. Opportunities to get involved include donating money, volunteering, or simply shopping online.
Jaeger-LeCoultre has teamed up with actor and environmentalist Leonardo DiCaprio on the new "Time to Care" program, which will benefit the Leonardo DiCaprio Fund at the California Community Foundation. Two special timepieces will be sold in the fall of 2008 and all the proceeds will go to DiCaprio's fund.
The first unique piece for sale will be a one-of-a-kind Master Compressor Extreme Lab, worn by DiCaprio to the premiere of his documentary as shown in the picture above. This piece will be the first watch in the Extreme Lab series to be delivered anywhere in the world, and is valued at approximately $300,000. It will be engraved with Leonardo DiCaprio's signature and is crafted in carbon fiber and titanium. It has an automatic tourbillon, two time zones, a pointer-type AM/PM indication at 12 o'clock and a patented jumping date display between 15 and 16 linked to local time. The watch features the first mechanical movement to operate without any lubricant and it is resistant to extreme temperatures of -40 degrees to +60 degrees Celsius.
The second unique timepiece for sale will be a one-of-a-kind edition of the Reverso Gyrotourbillon 2 valued at approximately $400,000, It will contain the first-ever spherical tourbillon and will be the first watch in the Reverso Gyrotourbillon 2 series to be delivered anywhere in world. The platinum watch also contains a 50-hour power reserve. It is fashioned from over 371 parts and was specially created to commemorate the 175th anniversary of Jaeger-LeCoultre this year.
The watches will be sold at the new Jaeger-LeCoultre Boutiques in Boca Raton and Beverly Hills which are scheduled to open summer and fall of this year, respectively.
Yay! Three cheers for buying cute designer handbags and supporting charity at the same time! Artist and designer Julie Feldman has a gorgeous collection of handbags and has made several of them part of a charity effort called "Handbags for Humanity." Every time you buy a designated bag (on her website the eligible bags are marked with a special logo) a percentage of the profits are sent to various charities that are listed on the website and right now include Center Theater Group, Ellen's Run, Long Beach Women's Cancer League, and Planned Parenthood of Los Angeles.
We Are Together is a film about children living in the Agape orphanage in Africa. It chronicles their lives, individual personalities, and incredible journeys through life. They are also all part of a choir and have recorded an album that coincides with the film (absolutely beautiful music!), with profits from the both the film and CD going to benefit children in South Africa.
There are lots of ways to support the cause, including joining their email list (which includes getting a free music track download), donating money, or simply by purchasing the CD and watching the film (coming soon to HBO).
The mission of First Book is to supply children of low-income families with their first new books to read and enjoy as a family and instill in them the joy of stories for years to come. Certainly an admirable objective that is sure to encourage not only intellectual growth but confidence as well. Donations don't need to be large to make a difference:
- $10 can introduce a child to four new books
- $50 means a family will be given twenty new books to share and learn together
- $100 will supply a tutoring kit of forty books that a mentor and child can work through during an entire year
- $250 brings one hundred books to a classroom providing a stack of books for each child
- $500 supplies two hundred books to fill forty children's backpacks in community-based programs
- $1,000 opens doors of a neighborhood library with four hundred books to share