I have always been a huge advocate for giving back. Normally I cannot always give money. I always make a point to buy a toy, or some groceries when organizations are sitting outside the stores, but it never feels like enough. I think I’m right in assuming that many of you might feel that way too. I’ve found that because I cannot always contribute the funds that these organizations require to keep going, spreading the word about them through word of mouth and social media. So that maybe someone who can contribute will do so, or tell someone else about it, is the best way I know how to help.
So, there are many different organizations I personally look for. Organizations that are determined to help women health, girls, LGBTQ communities, climate change, animals, oceans, mental health, just to name a few. So this morning I put together a small list of 7 organizations off the top of my head that fight for the things I find incredibly important and figured I’d share them, in case, maybe you had the funds to contribute or wanted to pass along the word if you feel the same way about some of these.
- The Ian Somerhalder Foundation
- On the website, Ian states, “ISF means being a part of a family who refuse to allow the degradation of our environment or the mistreatment of animals to go on any longer. It means standing together, empowering one another so we can go sustainably into our future”. I’ve been following Ian’s foundation for quite some time, probably longer than any foundation on this list, because I truly believe in what he’s trying to do, and he just needs help continuing to do it. Not only that, but they put a focus on educating the youth and giving them the tools to help which, something I don’t think enough organizations or foundation do. I believe educating the youth on all issues is the best chance at making change.
2. The Trevor Project
- This is a foundation that I’ve only recently looked into and quickly realized how important it is. “The Trevor Project offers accredited life-saving, life-affirming programs and services to LGBTQ youth that create safe, accepting and inclusive environments over the phone, online and through text “. I think it would be safe to say that individuals of any age when conflicted with who they are and figuring themselves out, accepting themselves, might not have the easiest time, those under 25 are deemed especially at risk, and this organization aims to help them with numerous services. I 100% think it is worth checking out and supporting.
3. Planned Parenthood Action Fund.
- One of the strongest things I believe is that your body is your own. So when women’s bodies came under attack, it, lit a fire. It is not much at all, but two dollars from every one of my paychecks go to planned parenthood to help them fight the attacks on women’s bodies, health, and rights. While the fight to an abortion, is in fact, a women’s right, Planned Parenthood does so much more than that. Without them, I truly believe women’s health would take a serious hit, especially when it comes to those who cannot afford any other kind of health care. My body is my body. Your body is your body. It shouldn’t even be up for discussion. So, if you feel the same, this organization is desperately in need of help.
4. Girls INC.
- “Fuel her fire, and she will win”. This is one of the first phrases you read when accessing their website. I truly believe that when given a chance and the tools, girls can exceed our wildest imaginations. I was stunned as I searched through their website to find how many tools and programs they have in place to see young girls succeed. Definitely worth the support.
5. Climate Reality
- Climate Change and the Earth are incredibly important to me. I’m going to school for environmental studies because I knew I wanted to learn the skills to help. Climate Reality was started by former vice president Al Gore, and their mission is to “catalyze a global solution to the climate crisis by making urgent action a necessity across every level of society.” The website lays out their mission, their initiatives, their plans, it’s clear to see who’s on their boards, and their financial statements were incredibly easy to find. Climate change is a hot debate, but I don’t see the debate because to me, climate change is happening, we are in trouble, and we need to fight to be better.
6. I Don’t Mind.
- Mental Health. One of my newest passions, and that comes with navigating my own mental health struggles. I don’t mind is an organization put together by actor Christopher Wood, it is about two years old, and already making strides. It is an official organization under Mental Health America and brings its knowledge and experience to the audience I Don’t Mind has grown. They have a social media tool kit and a merchandise line that can help people open up and start conversations. It’s worth a social media follow and your support.
- This is another organization that I cannot say enough about. It’s incredibly personal to me, as well. In the last 25 years, it has helped over 3 million survivors and their loved ones. Their website provides services, education, policy, consulting, and training. There was an incredibly powerful episode of Greys Anatomy that aired in March and has a continued storyline still, right now. After this episode, RAINN reported they saw a 43% spike in calls within 48 hours. It was one of the most powerful episodes of TV that I’ve ever seen, and I’ll be honest, it could be triggering, but it’s must-watch. RAINN is an organization that makes itself available through it all, from the beginning and through your journey. Even if you or anyone you know doesn’t need a service such as this, there are too many that do.
I could truly go on with this list forever, but I’ll leave it at seven with a few honorable mentions such as Oceana, World Wild Life Foundation, Rainforest Alliance, NAMI, your local food banks, women’s’ shelters, holiday toy drives and so much more. All it takes is a little research (Because people do suck and will try to scam you) and either a little money or a little support through social media to make a difference in what you’re passionate about. I cannot stress enough how important spreading the word is, and if you’re like me, and that’s all you can do right now, it is more than enough. You might not feel the same as I do about the foundations and organizations that I mentioned in this post, and that’s okay, I still encourage you to donate a little time to the ones you do care about because many of them do need our help.