Here, There and Everywhere

Posts tagged ‘gift’

A Glass of Water

Dear Gabriel,

I’m not afraid to drink a glass of water from the faucet of my home. Fact is, most of us are confident that the water we drink, bathe, and clean with is safe.

But in places like Haiti, that’s not always the case. The need for sanitation and clean water is overwhelming. In Port-au-Prince, hundreds of thousands of people have no access to clean water. Imagine being a woman in a rural place like Grand Anse, where finding a private place to use the bathroom can be life threatening because you don’t know who or what might be watching.

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It’s with the monthly support of people like you that we can build wells, sanitary latrines, and safe spaces for women – helping provide some of the basic, essential tools a woman needs to pull herself out of poverty. You can change a life right now just by making your monthly gift today.

Help us bring clean water, safety, and support to women all over the world. Make a monthly gift to CARE by January 31. You can enter to win a trip to see our work in action!

The support of donors changes lives. We’ve seen it again and again, but it never feels less miraculous.

This is why we’re giving you a chance to visit a CARE project and meet the men, women, and children whose lives you’ve touched.

See the official rules for details, but I can tell you it’s a truly inspiring experience. I’ve never once returned home without feeling inspired by the strength of the people I’ve met.

As a CARE supporter, I know that you’re committed to building a better world, where girls can go to school, women can start a small business, and families have enough food. In Haiti alone, the generosity of CARE’s donors has done incredible work. With a Food Voucher program, vulnerable families get nutritionally balanced food that helps support the local economy by relying on food produced in the area. Last June, we launched a 5-year program to protect vulnerable girls and women, prevent abuse, and help survivors of violence. We work in communities to help identify infrastructure needs, move public works projects forward, build family latrines and showers, and prevent cholera.

Our work in Haiti isn’t finished – our work all over the world isn’t complete – but we rely on your support to keep moving forward.

I can think of no more meaningful way to help build a better world than becoming a Partner for Change. Our monthly donors are truly at the forefront of our work in over 70 countries around the world, fighting poverty and empowering people to change their own lives.

If you want to see the world change, let’s start now: together. Become a Partner for Change by Thursday and you can enter to win a trip to a CARE project!

Sincerely,

Helene D. Gayle, MD, MPH
President and CEO, CARE

So Their Eyes May See

What better way to end this year than by giving a gift that is a life changer for someone in need?

A gift to Seva today is more than a year-end donation… it is a Gift of Hope for a better tomorrow.

Twelve year old Reshmi lives in Bangladesh with her mother and father. About a year and a half ago, Reshmi began to lose her vision in both eyes. As her vision got worse she dropped out of school. Reshmi became depressed as she grew completely dependent on others. She even stopped wanting to play with her friends.

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Reshmi’s parents became increasingly worried about their daughter’s ability to lead a normal life. As Reshmi lost her eyesight, she needed someone to care for her throughout the day.

In October, Reshmi’s mother brought her to a Seva eye camp made possible by donors who generously responded to Seva’s World Sight Day campaign, and by matching funds from Focusing Philanthropy.

Reshmi was examined and Seva’s local team of expert surgeons restored her vision in both eyes – removing the pediatric cataracts which had been causing her blindness.

Reshmi (pictured here with her mother the day after her surgery) tells Seva how very excited she is to return to school. Her mother, once full of worry, is now filled with happiness knowing that Reshmi will return to her studies and be able to succeed in life! Not only will Reshmi’s life return to normal now, but so will the lives of her entire family.

This is just one of so many incredible stories. This year, 85,000 cataract and sight saving surgeries were performed by Seva. Over 1,000,000 people received eye care services. All of this was made possible by generous supporters like you.

Your support today will change a life forever.

We thank you for your year-end support and wish you and yours a very peaceful and joyous New Year!

Jack Blanks
Executive Director
Seva Foundation

Whatever It Takes

Dear Gabriel,

EOY-2012-COBIn the midst of violent conflict in Syria, food shortages in West Africa and terrible floods in Pakistan… there are children.

Thousands of innocent, helpless children who are in very real danger.

UNICEF is determined to save these children, so we’re announcing an ambitious goal of raising $1 million by December 31. Because without an immediate influx of additional relief, many of these children will not make it.

Please donate now – and help rush critical treatments, clean water and vaccinations to the world’s most vulnerable children. 100% of your gift is tax-deductible.

I believe every one of these children is a reason to support UNICEF’s far-reaching, lifesaving work – and I know you do, too. But in case you need a few more, here are my top six:

1. You can trust UNICEF. Founded in 1946, UNICEF has helped save more children than any other organization. UNICEF takes the best ideas from around the world and puts them to work for the world’s most vulnerable children.

2. Your money will be used wisely. The U.S. Fund for UNICEF spends 90.5 cents of every dollar we receive on programs for children. Only 6.6 cents goes to fundraising, and 2.9 cents to administration.

3. Your money will make a difference. Since 1990, UNICEF’s work has helped cut the number of preventable child deaths by one-third. How?

Immunizations – When you support UNICEF, you help provide immunizations for more than half of the world’s children. In 2011 alone, UNICEF procured 2.5 billion doses of vaccine for children in 103 countries.

Clean water – Since 1990, 1.8 billion people have gained access to safe drinking water thanks to UNICEF and its deliveries of water purification supplies.

Nutrition – When famine strikes, UNICEF is the No. 1 provider of ready-to-eat therapeutic food for children.

4. UNICEF goes to the ends of the earth to help children – literally. On the ground in 190 countries and territories, in the world’s most challenging situations, UNICEF is there helping children. Over the past 30 years, UNICEF has helped create the world’s farthest-reaching supply network, capable of delivering even temperature-sensitive vaccines to the most remote locations. UNICEF goes places that no other relief organization can reach.

5. UNICEF will do whatever it takes to save a child. The organization’s unparalleled access and expertise mean that THIS is the group that can get things done where no one else can. UNICEF has actually stopped wars so children could be vaccinated. UNICEF works with government leaders, civic figures, celebrities, corporations, campus groups, churches, teachers and people just like you – anyone willing to help advocate for the survival and well-being of every child.

6. It doesn’t take much to save a child. Some of the most important treatments for curing children of disease, suffering and death cost pennies. Millions of children die of diarrhea every year, and the oral rehydration salts that can save them cost just 8 cents a packet. Malnutrition contributes to half of ALL child deaths, and the fortified nut paste and micronutrients needed to save them cost less than a dollar a day.

Please don’t wait; the clock is ticking for the world’s most vulnerable children. Donate today to rush real, lifesaving relief. Your gift is 100% tax-deductible.

On behalf of the world’s children, thank you.

Caryl M. Stern
President & CEO
U.S. Fund for UNICEF

When Catastrophe Strikes

Dear Gabriel,

CARE-EOY-2012-COB1When a typhoon hits, we’re there.

We are there when a drought causes crops to fail, leaving families desperate for just one meal a day.

Earthquakes, hurricanes, flooding: we can’t predict when they’ll come, but we can predict that we’ll be there, responding to the most urgent needs. We will stay for as long as it takes.

Even with all our trained and dedicated staff on the ground, none of our work is possible without the support of people like you.

Your gift will help girls, boys, and families living in poor communities during emergencies by providing tools and resources to help them rebuild their lives. Your help is especially crucial now: if you make a donation before December 31st, your gift will be matched, up to $1 million.

Will you help by making a gift to support families in need? Every dollar you give will help us reach our goal of $1 million before December 31st.

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon spoke recently about suffering around the world – and what gives him the strength to keep going. He said, “When I travel, I make it a point to go where people are suffering. I have spoken to families who lost everything, women who have been raped, children who have been orphaned. It would be easy to lose hope.

“But I was amid people who show extraordinary courage in the face of their suffering. I am especially inspired by the field workers like your CARE staff, who dedicate their lives to helping others. The United Nations can never succeed without such a strong partner like CARE.

“Let us work together to do everything we can to empower girls. I’m confident when we empower them, they will change our world. Change our world for the better.”

As a CARE supporter, I know that you share Ban Ki-moon’s passionate beliefs. Please help us continue to help send girls to school, empower women facing gender-based violence, and build communities where families have lost their homes due to disaster. We cannot do it without you, Gabriel.

Work with us for a better world in 2013. Any help you can provide is truly appreciated. Please make a tax-deductible gift today, and it will be matched up to $1 million.

Thank you so much for your dedication and hard work.

Sincerely,

Helene D. Gayle, MD, MPH
President and CEO, CARE

Voices of Hope

From FINCA Voices of Hope

Maria Trinidad Rodriguez

Maria lives with her husband and six children in a leaky shack made of corrugated tin in a village in El Salvador. Maria rises early each day to grind corn and make tortillas, which she sells in the market.

After Maria joined FINCA’S Buen Pastor (“Good Shepherd”) Village Banking group, she used her first loans of $175 to buy corn in bulk, enabling her to increase her profits on the sale of her tortillas. As a result, Maria has been able to provide her children with better, more nutritious food and keep them in school.

Maria’s note (dictated to one of her daughters) reads: “I thank God and FINCA for the loans I have been granted. I am improving my businesses and ensuring that my children can get ahead by going to school. I can neither read nor write, so I want them to learn.”

In honor of this campaign, any gift you make today of $100 or more will be DOUBLED! This is an extraordinary offer from FINCA’s Board of Directors. Maria’s first FINCA loan of just $175, which she used to buy corn in bulk to make her tortillas, literally changed her life. She is determined to inspire others along the same path from poverty to prosperity.

Sincerely,

Soledad Gompf
Vice President, FINCA

Massage Gratitude

My mother gifted my sweetheart and I some massages throughout the year and it has been such a blessing. We are very grateful. Not only for the massages, but also for the person who has graced us with her presence and touch.

Cathy, at Nourish in Santa Cruz, has been fantastic. No matter how stressed or uptight we are, she is able to provide her golden touch and knowledge and go right to the places that need the most work. Within a short time, we here ourselves saying “Ahhhhh”, taking deep breathes and sinking deeper into relaxation.

It’s not always easy to find someone that has just the right amount of experience and intuition and is able to provide just the right amount of pressure – strong, but gentle. Luckily, we have found her or perhaps she found us. Who’s to say?

We are well aware that most people do not have this luxury and wish everyone did. Being touched and cared for physically can make such a difference with everything else. We are grateful, not only for my mother’s gift, but also for Cathy and all those like her, who bring a little more peace to the world.

A Picture of Success

An excerpt from the book Don’t Just Sit There, Do Something! Grief’s Wake Up Call. Interview with Sybil Anderson-Adams.

Her life was the picture of success. Her husband was an attorney, they were drawing up plans for their dream house and she recently quit her teaching job to spend more time with their three young, healthy, happy children. Suddenly, the rug was pulled out from under her feet and before she knew what hit her, her life was turned upside down. What started out as a headache in court, turned out to be a leaking aneurysm. In spite of the doctors’ assurances to the contrary, within three weeks Sybil Anderson-Adams husband, father of her children, was dead. Without comprehension or time to have said good-bye, she struggled to survive and make sense of the incomprehensible.

As a result of her desperation and need to find answers, she reached out to her friends, neighbors, doctor and church and formed a support group for young adults who’s partners had died. The first meeting brought together twenty-five people who’d previously thought they were alone. With her need and ability to communicate her process and grief to others, she continues to open the door of life for those who thought it had been slammed in their face and locked shut forever.

SYBIL ANDERSON-ADAMS: When I arrived at the hospital the doctor said, “I have some bad news to give you. Your husband stopped breathing.’ I’ll never forget those words. ‘He stopped breathing.’ He finally said, ‘I’m sorry . . . he’s passed away.’ It was then that it hit me . . . like a wosh. (she hits her chest with the palms of both hands). I doubled over . . . just like you see in the movies.

After the shock had subsided I realized I didn’t know who I was anymore. It was the loss of identity. I was the type of person who always had my entire life planned out. Before Neal died, I’d never really had a traumatic event. I had things all figured and scheduled . . . which, as you know, gives you a sense of control. But I had no control over this one and that was my undoing. I had to decide where I was going; who I was. There was an urgency. I remember going to a counselor and saying, ‘When will I not feel this way? When, when, when?!’ The reality was so strong that I wanted it to be over. I didn’t want to cry anymore.

Then one day I remember making a decision. it was something one of my kids said. You know, ‘Out of the mouths of babes!’ One of my sons says, ‘If you hadn’t stopped and talked to Dad that one day long ago, you might never had known him or gotten married.’ I said, ‘You know, you’re right.’ And I had this vision where I decided that whatever came up I’d say, ‘Yes!’ That I would do things no matter how hard it was. When my kids had stuff they needed to do . . . cub scouts, swimming . . . I made a decision that no matter what, I wasn’t going to hide at home anymore, I was going to go. And what I found was that doing that made me stronger, even though a lot of the events I attended were absolute disasters! Taking some kind of action made me feel brave. it gave me confidence.

I remember sitting with another friend who was at that same juncture. She said, ‘I hate this. I want to be out of here.’ I felt the same at the time and replied, ‘Yeah, just get me out.’ And that’s one of the reasons I started a support group and keep it going to this day. I needed those people so bad. They were my reality. If somebody else could make it, so could I.

For awhile I could only live for the day. The future was nonexistent. I’ve met many people throughout the years that say the same thing. hey said, ‘Good-bye” in the morning and their spouse was dead by the afternoon. It changed my whole concept of how I look at things. I laugh more often now. We’ve got three teenagers and one in early adolescence. They can make you laugh or cry. If I wasn’t able to laugh once in a while our life would be one miserable hell.

I think all survivors make that decision at some point. You have to decide to live. My kids forced me into it. I’d be in bed with the covers pulled over my head, not wanting to get out and one of them would come in and say, ‘What’s for breakfast?’ What are you going to do; I couldn’t stay in bed? I had to get up. I was the only one they had left.

We had a saying in our house, ‘Life sucks.’ It was kind of our motto for awhile. The kids would say, ‘Life sucks!’ and I’d look at them and say, ‘Yeah, then what?’ They’d answer, ‘Then you die.” I’d continue, “So, then what are you going to do about it?’ They’d look at me, roll their eyes and say, ‘Come on Mom.’ It’s made them real. They see a different reality then most kids.

Life has become a really interesting place. Neal’s death and where my life has gone since, has added another dimension. God knows I wish it hadn’t happened, but without it I could have lived until I was eighty-five and never discovered this! Life is such a gift, though I’m not thrilled with the way I had to really find this out. I love being in this state of mind. I’m doing things that I never knew I could or would do. There was a point two years after he died when I realized, ‘My God, I can do anything!’ I survived something that at first glance seemed like an endless hole of despair. I didn’t think I’d ever climb out . . . but I did.

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