As humans, we wish to protect Earth and its living beings. For this reason, we often donate to charities or organizations that are fighting for the cause we believe in. With so many of them claiming to take responsibility, we often find ourselves in a limbo; wondering which one to support. Although not all of them are bad, there’s always a bad apple in the bunch that uses the majority of the donations it receives to pay its staff. We, however, have found 10 awesome organizations that are actually making this world a better place.
1. “House With A Heart” is an organization that is dedicated to helping senior pets who either lost their homes or were abandoned by their owners.
House With A Heart is a senior pet sanctuary that was created by Sher Polvinale and her late husband, Joe. The couple started the organization in 2006, at their home. Most of the residents of House With A Heart are senior dogs who lost their families and homes, or were abandoned because of their advanced age and various medical conditions. Since they have very little chance of being adopted, Sher and her husband decided to dedicate their lives to the innocent animals.
Today, animals who arrive at the organization have a home for life. The organization’s director, Sher, devotes her day and night caring for the pets and maintaining and improving the Sanctuary. Volunteers from nearby counties walk, bathe, and care for the residents, as well as clean and maintain the house and two-acre property. According to their official website, as of 2018, the organization had 55 dedicated volunteers. (source)
2. “Cleaning For A Reason” gives women with cancer free housecleaning services, so that they can focus on their health.
Debbie Sardone started Cleaning for a Reason to provide free housecleaning services to women undergoing cancer treatment. Since 2006, the nonprofit organization has donated more than $5.5 million worth of housekeeping services to cancer patients over the last decade. It all started when Debbie, who owned a cleaning company, received a call from a woman who was going through hard times. The caller was diagnosed with cancer and because of chemotherapy and radiation sessions, she was unable to work.
The caller was seeking an estimate from Debbie but since she couldn’t afford it, she said, ‘maybe I’ll call you when I can afford it,’ and hung up. This was before the caller ID gained popularity. Debbie was heartbroken by the fact that she couldn’t call her back. In an interview with Today, she explained, “I made a decision and shared with my staff that day that the next time a woman battling cancer called our office needing help with her home, if she couldn’t afford it, we would just give it to her completely for free.”
Today, the organization has helped over 30,200 women, valued at over $10,000,000. According to Debbie, the organization will continue to support women across the country for free, until a cure for cancer has been discovered. (source)
3. “Environmental Law Alliance Worldwide” helps people around the world by providing them with skills and resources they need to protect the environment through law.
The Environmental Law Alliance Worldwide (ELAW) seeks to provide public-interest lawyers and scientists around the world the skills and resources they need to protect the environment through law. According to their official website, the organization has helped more than 300 grass-roots lawyers and scientists in 70 countries participate in their network. ELAW recently helped Mayan beekeepers in Campeche and Yucatán, Mexico, argue within the court system to protect bee colonies from herbicide exposure. (source)
4. “My Friend’s Place” helps homeless young people on the streets of Hollywood, to find their inner self and make something out of their lives.
Founded by Steve LePore and Craig Scholz, My Friend’s Place started out by helping young men and women have at least one meal a day. In December of 1987, the founders saw young people on the streets in Hollywood, and decided that something must be done to help them. So, the duo started providing them with a sack lunch of one turkey sandwich, a chocolate pudding, a boxed drink and an orange.
On January 8th, 1988, they set out with 50 packed lunches for the first night’s meal and were greeted by 100 young people who were desperate for food. The Friday night meals then turned into building relationships with and learning from these young people. Six months later, word spread throughout the city and many men and women wanted to help the youth. In 1992, the first resource center was opened, that was capable of serving 50-70 homeless young people. Now, two decades later, the organization serves more than 1,400 youth in the Los Angeles area.
My Friend’s Place also partnered with various educational institutions and programs to help the youth find purpose in life. Today, there are 400 volunteers working with My Friend’s Place, to help young men and women build a self-sufficient life. (source)
5. “Puppies Behind Bars” is an organization that helps prison inmates to raise service dogs for wounded war veterans and explosive-detection canines for law enforcement.
Puppies Behind Bars (PBB) trains prison inmates to raise service dogs for wounded war veterans and first responders. The organization helps prisoners adopt puppies at the age of 8 weeks and live with them for approximately 24 months. During this time period, the inmates love and care for them, creating well-behaved dogs. At the same time, inmates get a chance to prove that they still have some good left within them and learn what it means to contribute to society rather than take from it.
The organization has been operating since July 1997 and has helped thousands of inmates combat loneliness, as well as provide guide dogs and EDCs. Since 2006, the organization has started raising service dogs for men and women who fought in wars. (source)
6. “419 Eater” is an organization that chats with scammers and pretends to fall for their scams. Thus, their time is wasted and also keeps them away from potential victims.
Today, anyone can connect to the internet and get in touch with someone at the other end of the globe. While technology can help us in many ways, it can also have an adverse effect in our lives. There are professional scammers, such as the ‘Nigerian Prince’, who dedicate their lives to scamming other people. The organization known as 419 Eater is dedicated to combating the scammers by wasting their time and resources, thus, the scammers are kept away from real potential victims.
The organization has more than 50,000 volunteers who share a common goal; to waste a scammer’s time. Volunteers find scammers and start chatting with them. They then pretend to be falling for their elaborate plan. As the conversation gets tense, the volunteers will ask the scammer to send a picture of him/her, so that they can verify that it’s really a human being. The scammer, thinking that sending a picture could seal the deal, would go forward with the request and the submitted images are uploaded to the “Hall of Shame”. (source)
7. “Love Commandos” protect couples in India, who are from different religions and cannot marry each other because of their difference.
In most parts of India, “love” is forbidden, and if two people fall in love with each other, they cannot get married unless they have the approval of their parents. Only some parents approve of marrying for love. The remaining consider it to be a disgrace to the family and only approve of marrying someone of their choice. So, when couples who are from two different religions or caste wish to marry each other, they contact the organization known as the Love Commandos.
The organization believes that the only way to change India’s caste-riven society is through love marriages. They also hope that the children born of such unions will be freer and more equal. Couples who approach the organization are given temporary residence until they can get married and obtain a marriage certificate. This is because, in India, if the couple is not married, the parents can accuse the man of kidnapping and the police will hand over the girl to the parents, regardless of her age.
The police believe that the ultimate decision and authority lies with the parents. But when a couple is married, it’s a different story. They have a legal right to live and travel together. This is why couples from all over the country are rushing to the organization as a last resort. (source)
8. “Doctors Without Borders” is a financially independent organization that travels the world to treat millions of patients who otherwise might not have adequate access to medical treatment.
The international humanitarian medical non-governmental organization (NGO), is known for their projects in zones affected by endemic diseases. 90% of the organization’s funding comes from private donors. The aim of the organization is to help citizens around the world, who might not have adequate access to medical treatment. In 2015 alone, more than 30,000 doctors and nurses provided their services in more than 70 countries. The organization is also responsible for preventing the Ebola virus from spreading throughout the globe, by containing it within the afflicted zone. (source)
9. “Bikers Against Child Abuse” is an organization that helps young victims gain confidence by standing guard in front of their house, as well as escorting them to the court house, where they will possibly have to come face-to-face with the culprit.
Most commonly known as B.A.C.A., the organization’s mission is to create a safer environment for abused children. According to their official website: “We exist as a body of Bikers to empower children to not feel afraid of the world in which they live. We stand ready to lend support to our wounded friends by involving them with an established, united organization. We work in conjunction with local and state officials who are already in place to protect children. We desire to send a clear message to all involved with the abused child that this child is part of our organization, and that we are prepared to lend our physical and emotional support to them by affiliation, and our physical presence. We stand at the ready to shield these children from further abuse. We do not condone the use of violence or physical force in any manner, however, if circumstances arise such that we are the only obstacle preventing a child from further abuse, we stand ready to be that obstacle.” (source)
10. “Engineers Without Borders – International”
EWB-I is an organization that brings together engineers, students and anyone with a passion for helping disadvantaged communities improve their quality of life. The organization works at grass-root levels to provide communities with the gift of knowledge. Since its inception in 2001, EWB-I volunteers have worked with communities across Africa, Asia and South America on everything from clean water and sanitation to renewable energy and public building projects.
Their projects aim to get engineering skills to the people and communities around the world that need them. Kibera, Kenya is a typical example. Kibera is a big, informal settlement in the south of Nairobi with a population of around 200,000. Most of the citizens live in poor conditions, such as open sewers and limited access to clean water. Sewers and drains can flood into homes leading to the spread of water-borne disease. EWB-I worked with the local organizations to help reduce flooding in Kibera, working to improve drainage systems and build flood protection. The project has made life better for some of the settlement’s poorest inhabitants. (source)