Make One Last Charitable Contribution

Google is giving $20 million to charities for the holidays and you can see their list of charities. I wish they had made them links so that some of you might visit the charities and make a donation of your own.

I always choose a charity at the end of the year and make one big last contribution for the season. My charity last Christmas was The Smile Train which is a really good one.

Unlike many charities that do many different things, The Smile Train is focused on solving a single problem: cleft lip and palate. Clefts are a major problem in developing countries where there are millions of children who are suffering with unrepaired clefts. Most cannot eat or speak properly. Aren’t allowed to attend school or hold a job. And face very difficult lives filled with shame and isolation, pain and heartache. The good news is every single child with a cleft can be helped with surgery that costs as little as $250 and takes as little as 45 minutes. This is our mission: To provide free cleft surgery for millions of poor children in developing countries and provide free cleft-related training for doctors and medical professionals until there are no more children who need help and we have completely eradicated the problem of clefts.

This year, I chose water as my focus. It's something we really take for granted in the U.S. More than 1 in 6 people in the world don't have access to safe drinking water. 1 out of every 4 deaths under the age of 5 worldwide is due to a water-related disease. Nearly 80% of illnesses in developing countries are linked to poor water and sanitation conditions.

There are a number of organizations that work to provide clean water in other parts of the world. $10 can provide water for one person for ten years. $500 can fund a project. $5000 can provide a well for an entire village.

What I like about this effort, as with The Smile Train, is that clean water doesn't just change lives, it changes them forever.

Here are 3 groups that you can consider. I selected, but they all seem to be doing good work.

Have a charity you would like to recommend to readers? Post a comment & link.


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