You know, it's for the kids.
December 13, 2005 1:08 PM   Subscribe

What do you get for people who have everything? Make a donation to those who don't in their name. A couple years ago my grandmother made a donation in my name to an organization that helped african communities buy livestock, water pumps and other agricultural supplies. This year I'd like to do the same. Unfortunately I've lost the card and am seeking information on similar charities.
posted by elwoodwiles to Human Relations (15 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Heifer International.
posted by matildaben at 1:10 PM on December 13, 2005

Médecins Sans Frontières is good people.

UNHCR, too
posted by matteo at 1:16 PM on December 13, 2005

I always research six to ten charities for my mother every year. I usually use Charity Navigator and I try to give her the best option from each of a variety of categories.
Since the 2000 election she has been chosing more civil rights, women's health and environmental charities. I try to choose categories I know she is interested in and ones she may not have considered.
I uaually wrap the printouts up nicely with a note saying how much I will give to the one of her choice.
This way I do most of the work, but she chooses where she thinks the money will do the most good for the year.
She loves it.
posted by Seamus at 1:35 PM on December 13, 2005

That's a good idea Seamus. This year, though, I specifically want to buy a goat. It's a family in-joke really. My mother has wanted a goat for years, but my dad won't let her have one. This way I can say "I bought you a goat." But the goat lives in Africa or S. America. It's a win-win.
posted by elwoodwiles at 1:44 PM on December 13, 2005 [1 favorite]

See: The Human Fund (money for people)

Some people see that as a huge cop-out, one step below gift-certiciates. Unless it's personally meaningful, it's like saying "I didn't want to put any effort in to it."
posted by blue_beetle at 2:00 PM on December 13, 2005

My favorites: ORBIS International sponsors sight-restoring surgeries for curable blindness in developing countries, Mercy Corps has too many programs to mention, and Association François-Xavier Bagnoud supports orphans and vulnerable children who have been touched by AIDS.
posted by cior at 2:16 PM on December 13, 2005

elwood, I'm doing the exact same thing for a friend of mine who wants chickens.
posted by matildaben at 2:20 PM on December 13, 2005

WorldVision(.org) also does this.
posted by vanoakenfold at 2:20 PM on December 13, 2005

Intermediate Technology
posted by normy at 2:24 PM on December 13, 2005

I see you've already marked best answer(Heifer is a great one), but I wanted to add some others I really like:

Engineers Without Borders
Engender Health
posted by lobakgo at 3:11 PM on December 13, 2005

Oxfam Unwrapped do this, in Australia and the UK, but apparently not in the USA. My sister wants us to buy goats for Christmas this year.
posted by Tawita at 3:12 PM on December 13, 2005

lobakgo, thank you for those. All the suggestions were excellent. I only marked heifer because it was exactly the organization I was looking for.
posted by elwoodwiles at 3:30 PM on December 13, 2005

Doesn't directly answer your question but you'd probably find it interesting: Kiva makes charitable loans to micro-enterprises in Africa. Unfortunately they have no "in need" businesses right now, but file it away for later.
posted by zanni at 8:04 PM on December 13, 2005

Oh, Ashoka is another great one. Here's what they do--Ashoka's mission is to shape a citizen sector that is entrepreneurial, productive and globally integrated, and to develop the profession of social entrepreneurship around the world. Ashoka identifies and invests in leading social entrepreneurs—extraordinary individuals with unprecedented ideas for change in their communities—supporting them, their ideas and institutions through all phases of their careers.
posted by lobakgo at 8:51 PM on December 13, 2005

My sister and I are doing this for my dad and his girlfriend this year. There have already been several jokes about goats made between us, and we are looking for a good goat-photo card to send. They are comfortable, and just became foster parents of a brand-new baby boy, so they really have all they want or need this year. I know this is something my dad will appreciate.
posted by Felicity Rilke at 10:42 PM on December 13, 2005

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