This is a list of the five non-profit organizations that I support. Each of these charities is fighting a worthwhile battle. I respect what they are doing because these are things that I believe in and things that I think you should believe in too.

SAVE THE CHILDRENGIVE NOW! has spent the better part of the last century working harder than most to better the lives of children internationally. When it comes right down to it, you do not NEED another pair of stilettos or a brand new guitar, but that little boy in Sudan DOES NEED protection from exploitation and violence. And his older sister? Well, a couple of dollars out of your pocket will buy her an education.

Go on; tell me that isn’t money well spent.

THE CROHN’S AND COLITIS FOUNDATION OF AMERICAGIVE NOW! is very near and dear to my heart. I’m not much for math, but as I understand it the equation goes like this:

Money = Research
Research = Cure
Cure = Less diarrhea and less farting
Less diarrhea and less farting = Happier Hubby

And I guess you pretty much can’t beat that. So donate now. Do it for Donald.

THE AMERICAN RED CROSSGIVE NOW! plays a very significant role in my life. I do not meet the minimum standards for donating blood or platelets and I never have, but my husband does. He is an apheresis donor. This really puts my life into a rather harsh perspective. What did I do today while my husband gave his life forces to save another? I sat in traffic and picked my nose.

THE CITY OF HOPEGIVE NOW! and its affiliates wage a war everyday on life-threatening diseases like cancer. Like HIV and AIDS. Like diabetes. A very close friend of mine has spent the last few years watching ovarian cancer slowly and painfully devour her mother from the inside out. So before you ignore me, before you click away, at least CONSIDER that your dollar could be the one that saves her life.

And last but far from least: OLIVE CRESTGIVE NOW! provides protection and opportunities to abused children. It is a young charity, but it is an organization that promotes healthy family relationships and strong educations through high school and sometimes college and seeks to put an end to the cycle of violence and abuse. Their website states that in the next 9 seconds an incident of child abuse will be reported. Approximately 3.5 million incidents of child abuse are reported in our country every year.

Which is really about 3.5 million cases too many.

Do I support other charities? Yes. There are many other organizations out there - the Mayo Clinic, CARE, Heifer International, Susan G. Komen for the Cure, CASA - that I admire and believe in wholeheartedly. This list of five groups is by no means a comprehensive list of the charities I view as viable. It is simply a list of the five charities that I consistently support and would therefore like you to know about.

Donald and I do not accept donations. If you donate money to us, it will find its way to a charity. This is not to say that we do not appreciate your gesture or your money; we simply feel that there are many, many individuals internationally who need that gesture and that money more than we do. If you would like to empty your pockets, I urge you to either elect one of the charities listed above or consider purchasing a photographic print from our shop. At the end of every year, 10% of our shop profits will be donated to one of the charities listed above. I will, of course, blog about that when it happens. In addition, a large chunk of our shop profits will be put into a fund to help us adopt a child who needs a loving home.