1} Give Wounded Veterans a New Leash on Life Through the Puppies Behind Bars Program, inmates at correctional facilities throughout New York and New Jersey train puppies to serve as service dogs for wounded veterans. Since its inception, PBB has trained and provided service dogs to more than 100 veterans. By donating $25, you pay for a collar and leash for one of these service dogs.
2} Sponsor a Special Needs Cat I have been actively donating to Blind Cat Rescue & Sanctuary for a number of years now, so I absolutely had to include them here! Blind Cat Rescue & Sanctuary is a lifetime care sanctuary for cats who are blind, FIV+, or FELV+. These are cats who were deemed unadoptable by regular shelters, and are now thriving under the care of volunteers. How can you help? Sponsor A Cat! For $30 per month you can sponsor the cat of your choice - receiving photos of your selected kitty, as well as periodic updates about him or her. Not only do I love this one for #GivingTuesday, it also serves as an amazing gift for Christmas, birthdays, or other special occasions.
3} Bring Coziness + Literacy to a Child in Need A long-time favorite organization of mine is Pajama Program, which provides cozy pajamas and books to children living in shelters, group homes, and temporary housing. Many of these children are shuffled from place to place with no parents to speak of, so warm pajamas and a bedtime story brightens their world! In NYC you can volunteer to host Reading Parties. Not in NYC? No worries! You can donate new books and pajamas!
4} Give a Disabled Dog the Chance to Run Again By now you can probably tell that I have a soft spot for special needs animals, which is why Romania-based Adăpostul Speranța, a Four Paws International partner run by Fundatia Speranța, has struck a chord with me on this #GivingTuesday! The animal hospital is known for taking in stray dogs, providing them lifelong shelter, and building special carts for their paralyzed canine residents so that they can run again! Right now, Adăpostul Speranța needs to buy materials for the construction of 11 new carts, so donating any amount will fund this endeavor, and give a paralyzed pup the chance to play.
5} Show Love to a Senior No one wants to be alone; but for many senior citizens this is precisely how they find themselves during their golden years. Enter Love for the Elderly. If you want a super simple way to make someone smile, this right here is the organization for you! Through Love for the Elderly's Letters of Love initiative, you have the power to change someone's perspective simply by putting pen to paper. Simply create/write a few cards or letters, mail them off to the address at the link above, and rest easy knowing that someone in a nursing home will be cheered by your communication! Teachers, this is also a great class project!
How will you celebrate #GivingTuesday?