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I had a fun fall post scheduled for today but with Hurricane Irma this weekend and Harvey Harvey a few weeks ago and who knows how many more hurricanes maybe coming our way, I just wasn’t feeling it. It’s hard to be all fluff and happiness sometimes when there are natural disasters going on and it seems like the world is coming to an end. There are people suffering so what I want to buy for the fall just isn’t really all that important right now. Helping hurricane victims is what’s important.The Caribbean and Florida were just hit by Irma and Harvey victims still have a long road to recovery. Any little bit you can give can help so many. You can donate your time, items or money. I know we can’t all pack up and fly out to the affected areas but donating items and money are just as good and helpful. Check with your local churches/synagogues/mosques (pick one anyone you don’t have to belong to it or practice) and town municipalities to see what they’re putting together. See if they are collecting goods or money to send. Some may even be looking for volunteers to send to areas to help. Check your local blood banks and donate blood. You don’t have to be in the damaged areas to donate blood. Find your local blood bank and give blood if you can. You can find your closest accredited American Association of Blood Bank blood bank or find the nearest location on the American Blood Centers site. We all mostly know by now non-perishable food items are always needed but don’t forget about women’s hygiene products. Ladies still need their tampons, pads, and midol! Donate cleaning supplies, dog and cat foods, diapers, baby formula, toothpaste. Think of giving story books or coloring books and crayons. Lots of families and children are staying in shelters and it’s nice to give the kids something to do. Here are some charities taking collections besides just the Salvation Army and Red Cross if you’re looking for more options. AmeriCares Best Friends Animal Society Catholic Charities Direct Relief North Shore Animal League Operation USA Project Hope Samaritan’s Purse Save the Children United Methodist Committee on Relief I personally donated to North Shore Animal League and Samaritan’s Purse. Make sure you don’t get scammed! I always believe in doing your own research on charities before you donate to them. It’s really a shame and disgusting but not everyone out there taking donations is doing it for the right reasons. If you think a group or person is running a scam instead of a legit collection you can report them to the National Center for Disaster Fraud. Did you know not all charities allocate most of our donated funds to the causes they support? Sometimes the bulk of donated monies goes towards salaries, expenses, back into fundraising, THEN what’s left over goes towards helping the cause. You can check on most charities to see where their funds are allocated by visiting Charity Navigator or Charity Watch. Unfortunately, hurricane season isn’t over yet either. So skip that latte or dinner out this week and donate any little bit you can. What charities do you know of? Drop it in the comments below. I’d like to keep updating the list!
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