Hi there! A little over a year ago, we launched Dollar a Day to help people discover and support amazing nonprofits. Although we've wrapped up, it's been a very rewarding project and year — and as part of our shut down process, we're excited to open-source the code of Dollar a Day and share our experience from the past year. We invite anyone to build their own version of Dollar a Day. Maybe it's Dollar a Week, or a version focused just on nonprofits working on environmental issues or social justice. We wanted to make it easier for anyone who's inspired to build off our work. There's a lot of potential in connecting people to nonprofits, and Dollar a Day only scraped the surface.Here's a link to the open-source repository
“Although we have never met, I have followed your work with great interest this past year. I love the whole concept of Dollar a Day. You have found some amazing organizations! Some I already knew (and can attest to their value) and so many more I loved to learn about. Reading about these nonprofits was such a lovely, selfless way to start each day. As an educational tool, the idea was outstanding.”
“This project is partially responsible for me to join a company that helps non-profits, and I also created this fun thing to track your donation volume. I was worried this day was coming as the numbers took a downwards turn. Anyhow, thanks for all you did with this project, and for all the inspiration you have provided with it, I am sure it outweighs the monetary value.”
“Thank you so much for your great work. I have loved being part of your efforts. Learning about the myriad ways that people come together to help and strengthen their communities, and the global community, has been extremely heartening. As a result, I have joined many of the organizations you guys alerted me to through this program, and am going into my second year of tutoring for Reading Partners in Harlem. You have definitely made a difference in my life, and I wish you all the very best in whatever scheme you cook up next.”
The goal was to build something small that could have a big impact. We hoped that Dollar a Day would grow organically — fueled by people sharing it with their friends. If it grew a ton, we would recruit a dedicated team to nurture and support it. If it didn't catch on, we could easily shut it down. We ended up in the middle — over $316k raised for 365 great nonprofits — and decided to wrap up the project as a year long campaign.
We received a bunch of press at launch (Oct 1, 2014), and Dollar a Day received over 400 donors the first day, and 170 the second. It was modest in internet scale, but pretty good in the nonprofit world. Ours was not a small request — $30 a month — so we were happy Dollar a Day had resonated. By the fourth day, signups began to taper off. And while the slowdown was disappointing, we soon had 1,000 awesome donors collectively donating $1,000 a day to nonprofits. And 2,500 people had signed up to receive our free daily email featuring one nonprofit each day. Discovery of great nonprofits was our main goal, so we were just as happy with email signups. It meant that people wanted to discover amazing nonprofits, even if they weren't able or ready to give every day.
Once we launched, a mix of paid part-timers and volunteers helped run the site: doing customer support, researching and selecting nonprofits, doing social media, and writing the copy for the daily emails. For a few months, we hired a part-time designer and developer (as many of us who built the site needed to return to other commitments), who added a few new features like the ability to save nonprofits to a list you could see anytime. But our capacity to build on the original version of the site was limited. We built something that was able to run with limited resources, but ideally the site could have grown to the point where we could have hired a few people to work on Dollar a Day full-time.
There are any number of ways a Dollar a Day-like site could exist and thrive. If you're interested in building your own version, this can help you get started:
To select nonprofits you'll want to decide on a process you feel confident in. We started by building large lists of nonprofits — from reading, searching online, and from suggestions. We decided to target nonprofits that were:
Once we had a large list that fit our criteria, we then used publicly available resources like Charity Navigator, GuideStar, and government filings (such as IRS 990s) to check a nonprofit's financial health. This was all done online and for free. We also searched for any history of an organization's misconduct — the more you know! Google goes a long way! Once we got the process down, we probably spent 30 minutes to an hour researching each nonprofit before deciding if it was OK to be featured. However you choose to approach things, just make sure to be transparent about your process.
Responsive customer service is key, so having a good tool for that is great. We used HelpScout, who offer a free version of their service that was more than sufficient. Social media is important, of course. While you don't need to be on all platforms, picking a few key ones to have a voice is the right idea. (Maybe that means you focus exclusively on Twitter and Instagram.)
At minimum, you'll want a reliable person who can fix bugs and address payment issues, as there are always thing that needs attention from time to time. Of course, the more developer and designer resources you have, the more creative you can be in building your own version of the idea. And if you're a developer and designer yourself, great!
When we started Dollar a Day we decided to form a nonprofit corporation. This was an easy process, like forming an LLC. We probably didn't even need to do that if we wanted to just hack something and keep it simple, but we felt it was a good step to show that Dollar a Day was truly not-for-profit. Since we were not a 501(c)(3) when we launched (this takes time and paperwork, as it allows you to offer direct US tax-deductions to donors) we used a company called Network For Good to process all donations. They're a payments processor for nonprofits, and by using them, donations were US tax-deductible even though Dollar a Day was not yet a 501c3. It's a solid nonprofits payments solution to get going without dealing with handling money directly.
Months later we received our 501c3 status, so we decided to switch to Stripe (another great payments product) to have a bit more control over the user experience of checkout and emails donors received. From then, we'd be receiving funds from Stripe and mail out checks to nonprofits every few weeks.
We had a friendly law firm help us pro-bono on the 501c3 application. If you have a friend who's a lawyer maybe they or their firm might help with this. But there are different ways you can structure what you're doing. And if you use something like Network for Good, you may need to create very little structure, if any, to get going.
The fun stuff! The world is your oyster! Keep it similar to Dollar a Day and just add your own voice and nonprofits, or adapt Dollar a Day to something new. Here are some of the ideas we had:
A "Give More" option in the daily newsletter for when donors were inspired to make one-off donations more than a dollar, build partnerships with like-minded organizations to spread the word, write and post more content from nonprofits and thoughtful posts on the nonprofit world, build ways for people to explore our growing nonprofit database — this could have been another gateway for people to discover nonprofits online. And if we wanted to get really start doing new things about it, there could be a sister app — something Pandora-like — which anyone could use to quickly discover new nonprofits based on their interests and location. But it's endless! There are so many ways to go beyond or deftly simplify what we were able to do.
Also lots of ways to approach this. Maybe you have a big community that you can tap into to get it rolling, and it can build on that — a university, a company, a town, or any other community that can form around something. This can be your base community or it can exist just for this group. It doesn't have to be about building the largest site in the world as long as you're helping great nonprofits :)
This has been an amazing experience. We've heard from so many people who've volunteered and donated directly to organizations they discovered through Dollar a Day. That's what we hoped for when we started, and it's thrilling to know it happened.
Also, huge thanks to David Leeds, Audrey Evans, Nessim Higson, Paulo Pereira, Marc Roberts, Erica Jain, Greg Mills, Kilian Murphy, Ryan Closner, Julia Levy, Adrian Hong and Indy Inc, Josh Kushner, Elana Berkowitz, Evan Burchard, Zack Shankman, Gaurav Chandrashekar, Rachel Tennenbaum, Stephen Blaker, Safwat Saleem, Carl Chen, Justin Kazmark, Aaron Bourke and Reed Smith, Ari & M ss ng P eces, Network For Good, and Stripe.
And finally, thanks to everyone who donated, who discovered nonprofits via the newsletter, and to all the amazing nonprofits, and their staff, who do such great and important work. Thanks!
P.S. If you have questions or want to get in touch feel free to reach out here.
Today, more than two billion people lack access to the most basic things, such as clean drinking water, adequate sanitation, reliable passage to local markets and more. Engineers Without Borders USA (EWB-USA) is engineering change in 39 countries around the world to transform this reality — one well at a time, one bridge at a time, and one community at a time. Each of their locally-driven development programs originates with a community self-identifying its needs and requesting support. From there, each project is carried out sustainably, collaboratively, and with a minimum five-year commitment. The results? Children can cross sturdy bridges to attend school, local clinics have consistent supplies of electricity, and families have regular access to safe drinking water. — picked by Cassie M., who heads up day-to-day.
Founded in 1966, The Poetry Project began as a natural extension of New York City's newly flourishing literary scene and quickly took root as institution where community-based artworks could find the resources, talent, and audience to thrive. Founded by luminaries such as Allen Ginsberg, the Project's mission was to support the creation and promotion of contemporary poetry to an increasingly diverse audience, while offering a space for poets and artists to collaborate. With more than five decades now under their belt, it would be easy to call their mission a (big) success. Today, they continue to offer live programming, publications, events, and workshops to an array of writers both contemporary and established. They also host an annual marathon reading on New Year's Eve, archive their work with Library of Congress, and — most importantly — offer continual encouragement to hundreds of budding writers. — picked by Cassie M., who heads up day-to-day. Originally featured on July 13, 2015.
iMentor is dedicated to connecting influential mentors with high school students in low income communities. Students work with their mentors one-on-one to develop strong personal relationships, nurture college aspirations, navigate the college application process, and build critical skills that lead to not just academic achievement, but a better set of lifeskills. In addition to in person mentorship, iMentor also provides an interactive template that other organizations can use to implement their own effective mentoring programs across the nation. — picked by Perry C., co-founder. Originally featured on October 10, 2014.
Artists For Humanity's (AFH) mission is to bridge economic, racial and social divisions by providing underserved youth with the keys to self-sufficiency through paid employment in art and design. They celebrate the talents and wonderful energy of young people by giving them hands-on experiences in creativity, business, teamwork, and self-governance. Participants learn the techniques and tools of professional artists and the business world while engaging in education, employment, artistic exploration, and entrepreneurial experience. This produces life-transforming change for youth and for their communities. — picked by Perry C., co-founder. Originally featured on May 23, 2015.
Water For People joins communities, local entrepreneurs and governments in an effort to provide clean water, adequate sanitation systems, and basic health services to impoverished communities. By designing solutions based on long-term needs, this organization hopes to catalyze critical changes that will result in longer — and better — lives for all. — picked by Cassie M., who heads up day-to-day. Originally featured on October 13, 2014.
Since 2003, StoryCorps has collected and archived more than 45,000 interviews with nearly 90,000 people across America. One of the largest oral history projects of its kind, the powerful stories collected in these conversations range from finding first love to losing a family member to highly personal meditations on self-acceptance. On one level, it's just life. On another, it's a moving portrayal of our shared humanity. — picked by Cassie M., who heads up day-to-day. Originally featured November 2, 2014.
Reading Is Fundamental (RIF) is the largest children's literacy program in the United States. Their mission is to motivate young children to read by working with them, their parents, and community members to make reading a fun and beneficial part of everyday life — beginning with the provision of new books, free of charge, where they are needed most. Whether in schools, homeless shelters, or community centers—wherever you find children — RIF volunteers spend countless hours distributing books, staging reading motivation activities, and promoting the importance of literacy in their communities. — chosen by Perry, co-founder. Originally featured April 30, 2015.
Founded in 1979, the American Refugee Committee International (ARC) is a humanitarian aid organization that works to help people take back control of their lives. ARC programs in Africa, Asia and Haiti serve nearly 2.5 million people each year, providing health care, clean water, sanitation, shelter, gender-based violence prevention services, microenterprise development, disease prevention services, education, legal services, counseling and repatriation assistance. ARC works with its constituents as partners. Of its 2,000 employees, 95 percent are hired locally. — picked by Tieg, founding developer
National Novel Writing Month organizes events where children and adults find the inspiration, encouragement, and structure they need to achieve their creative potential. Their programs include"The Young Writers Program," which provides free writing workbooks, virtual tools, and curriculums to K-12 classrooms, and "The Come Write In" program, which helps turn local libraries and bookstores into neighborhood writing havens. Of course, there's also their namesake event — the "National Novel Writing Month," which annually challenges people to write a 50,000 word novel in 30 days. "Kids" of all ages are welcome. — picked by Cassie M., who heads up day-to-day
Founded in 1998, Half the Sky Foundation (HTS) was created in order to enrich the lives and enhance the prospects for orphaned children in China. They establish and operate infant nurture and preschool programs, provide personalized learning for older children and establish loving permanent family care, medical care, and guidance for children with disabilities. It is their goal to ensure that every orphaned child has a caring adult in her life and a chance at a bright future. Since Half the Sky began its work in China, more than fifty thousand children have benefited from one or more of their five innovative programs: The Infant Nurture Program; The Little Sisters Preschool Program; The Youth Services Program; and The Family Village Program; and the China Care Home. — picked by Tieg, founding developer. Originally featured on July 23, 2015.
I am compelled by the work of The Fortune Society because they are addressing the incarceration crisis in our society in a proactive, humane and thoughtful way. They have decades of experience in helping incarcerated and formerly incarcerated individuals become positive, contributing members of society upon their re-entry into society. I also appreciate the timely work they are doing to advocate for a fairer criminal justice system. - picked by Audrey, head of research. Originally featured on April 18, 2015.
This organization is close to my librarian heart because of their advocacy work and the support they give to free and open source software — software developed for the public good. SFC does wonderful work in supporting and promoting a tech ethos that values privacy, transparency, open collaboration, freedom of expression, security, choice, and access for the entire community. — picked by Audrey Evans.
I have been drawn to City Harvest for years because of their simple, elegant and common-sense solution to a growing hunger problem in New York City. Unbelievably, there are over 1.4 million New Yorkers facing food hunger. City Harvest rescues the food that is wasted throughout our city every single day and redistributes and delivers it to the people in need through 500 community food programs all across the city. Their goal is to end hunger in New York City, and I think this is an attainable and worthy goal. I love this organization because they take resources that would be otherwise wasted and make them useful to those in need. City Harvest now delivers 136,000 pound of food daily and 50 million pounds this year. — picked by Audrey Evans. Originally featured on January 30, 2015.
Ocean Conservancy protects vital habitats of marine animals (like sea turtles, polar bears and whales), funds beach clean-ups in coastal communities across the country, and advocates for the protection of the ocean's most extraordinary places for future generations. For anyone who loves the ocean and our planet, this is the organization for you. — picked by Ben Stone. Originally featured on June 8, 2015.
As someone who has nightmares of being stuck on a deserted island without my contacts or glasses, VisionSpring strikes a chord. People in the developing world who work with their hands—like tailors, rug makers, bike mechanics, weavers, and artisans—are particularly affected by poor vision. VisionSpring was founded on a very basic principle: “If you can’t see, you can’t work.” And they’ve been effectively tacking this challenge ever since. — picked by Ben Stone, board member and co-founder. Originally featured on December 11, 2014.
Not only is Indigo Africa founded by one of Dollar a Day’s own, but the mission of the organization is truly inspiring. Empowering a population of oft forgotten people like the women of Rwanda to take real control over their future through education and training is a cause beyond worthy of Dollar a Day’s support. — picked by Zack, founding designer. Originally featured on June 20, 2015.
Scientific and medical innovation is a privilege typically only afforded to first-world countries. However, there are so many smart and talented scientists in the developing world with a lack of access to tools and technology to combat the disease they are on the front lines of fighting. I love the creativity and vision of Seeding Labs in seeing the potential in these under appreciated places. — picked by Zack, founding designer. Originally featured on March 31, 2015.
Radio seems to be such a dying art. That is until you learn about companies like KCRW. Radio reminds me of my childhood, but these days when I listen to the radio it’s plastered in yelling DJ’s and terrible advertisements. KCRW not only has great programming but is helping to preserve an American institution. — picked by Zack Sears, founding designer. Originally featured on December 12, 2014.
Twenty years ago, Books Through Bars unknowingly began when a small Philadelphia-based press obliged a written request to send some free books to an incarcerated person at a nearby prison. The initial exchange blossomed into a full-blown trade, with dozens of letters pouring in each week, and the press regularly setting aside excess stock in order to fulfill every request possible. Today, Books Through Bars is a thriving, all-volunteer organization — shipping thousands of packages to incarcerated people all over the northeastern United States, aiding the emergence of other prison book programs, and facilitating an ongoing public dialogue around criminal justice issues. — picked by Cassie M., who heads up day-to-day. Original featured on January 24, 2015.
The Center for Creative Land Recycling (CCLR or "see clear") enables communities to develop sustainably and equitably through land recycling — restoring underutilized, blighted sites to productive use, all over the world. Some examples of their work include transforming one of Israel's largest landfills into a recycling park, restoring an industrial port site in Toronto as a thriving commercial waterfront, and turning an abandoned steel mill in Atlanta into a walkable district of shopping, offices, and homes, — picked by Cassie M., who heads up day-to-day. Originally featured on March 5, 2015.
Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater continues the tradition of a fabled modern dancer, the late Alvin Ailey. Over the last 60 years, its repertoire of dancers has performed for an estimated 25 million people across the entire world, becoming a powerful and enduring vehicle for both expressing and celebrating the African American cultural experience. — picked by Cassie M., who heads up day-to-day. Originally featured on December 14, 2014.
Easy, affordable access to information is one of main the pillars of personal and societal growth and education, and the Web is one of the most important allies. Giving everyone a chance to learn and be educated makes the world a much better place. — picked by Paulo, designer. Originally featured on April 6, 2015.
Grassroot Soccer is such an incredible organization because they effectively bring people together using sports and create an open forum for at-risk individuals to understand and prevent infectious diseases. — picked by Erica, volunteer researcher. Originally featured on January 12, 2015.
Books were a big part of my childhood, and later in life, they had a huge importance in what I now do for a living. I recognize how one can be changed by a single book, and it’s only fair that everyone has that chance. — picked by Paulo, designer. This nonprofit was also a community favorite, receiving the most "Likes" of any featured organization. Originally featured on June 4, 015.
Mental Health is the most commonly overlooked field of healthcare in America, yet one of the most prevalent. This organization is ambitiously trying to change perceptions, knowledge about, and resources available to those who suffer from these diseases, as well as to the families that are impacted. A very noble and necessary cause. — picked by by Erica Jain, volunteer researcher. Originally featured on May 16, 2015.
Malaria is one of the easiest diseases to prevent with low-cost equipment. Nothing but Nets uses a simple but effective model of distributing bed nets to those in need to substantially reduce malaria incidence in areas where families would not be able to otherwise afford these live-saving devices. — picked by Erica Jain, volunteer researcher. Originally featured May 29, 2015.
Girls Who Code is a program that works to educate and equip girls with the computing skills to pursue 21st century opportunities. Working alongside leading educators, engineers, and entrepreneurs, GWC provides intensive instruction combined with high-touch mentorship and exposure to the industry's top female engineers — inspiring legions of young women to take on an entire industry, one line of code at a time. — picked by Cassie M., who heads up day-to-day. Originally featured on October 6, 2014.
Design Impact is a social innovation firm made up of designers, community development practitioners, social entrepreneurs, and educators who are working together to design a better world. Together, they incubate projects that transform communities — creating active learning experiences that are designed to help participants drive change in their own unique contexts. Their projects take place all over the world, from a fortified snack that fights malnutrition in India to a business accelerator that empowers small batch manufacturers and spurs economic development in Cincinnati. — picked by Cassie M., who heads up day-to-day. Originally featured on October 3, 2014.
The Possible Project is a youth entrepreneurship center that teaches high school students to start and run their own businesses. Working with a team of top-tier mentors and professionals, students are guided through a six part curriculum that provides them training in core concepts like business development, as well as hands-on experience in real working environments. By the time they're done, they've learned everything from basic customer service skills to the ins-and-outs of website building and 3D printing — making them truly equipped for success in our modern world. — picked by Cassie M., who heads up day-to-day. Originally featured January 09, 2015.
Ushahidi, which means "testimony" in Swahili, began in 2008 as an ad hoc group of volunteers who created a website to map post-election violence and peace efforts in collaboration with citizen journalists in Kenya. Now an organized nonprofit, Ushahidi is committed to internet democracy and transparency and creates free and open source tools that allow anyone to gather distributed data and visualize it on a map or timeline. Ushahidi's mission is to create the simplest way of aggregating information from the public to use in times of crisis. — picked by Cassie M., who heads up day-to-day. Originally featured October 28, 2014.
Participatory Culture Foundation (PCF) is dedicated to supporting a democratic media by creating open and decentralized video tools and services. Some of their projects include Amara, the largest global community for captioning and subtitling video, and Miro, a free video downloader and player. Each year, millions of people use these tools to create and distribute free videos — which enables citizens to become both builders of and participants in media, culture, and politics.
Search For Common Ground partners with people around the world to ignite shared solutions to destructive conflicts. Whether at the local or national level, they strive to unite people across dividing lines to discover and achieve shared goals. They work with those traditionally in power and those without a platform, often women and youth. Their work focuses on three key areas — dialogue, media, and community building — and the breadth of their work is truly amazing. They train youth leaders, run mediation sessions, create call-in radio shows to instigate far-reaching dialogues, arrange soccer matches, participatory theater, and shared farming projects. With some creative thinking, they are able to bring divided communities, neighbors, and families together to discover their common humanity.
Since 1939, Hyde Park Art Center has been a leader in advancing contemporary visual art in Chicago. With an expansive reach and bold personality, the nonprofit organization brings artists and communities together to support creativity at every level. As an open forum for exploring the artistic process, the Art Center fosters creativity through making, learning about, seeing, and discussing art — all under one roof. Within its facility, the Art Center inspires creativity through dynamic art-centered interactions, including exhibitions, artist talks, free public events, studio art classes, professional development opportunities for artists, arts education outreach, and an international residency. These programs work in concert to cultivate a more vibrant, inclusive arts community; facilitate opportunities for artists to experiment and take risks with their work; and encourages visitors to get involved with the entire process of art and art making. Outside its walls, the Art Center’s outreach programs in historically underserved neighborhoods bring the visual arts to Chicago youth, their teachers, and their families.
ACT for Women and Girls began in 2003 as a grassroots effort to examine the needs of rural, marginalized women and girls in the Central Valley of California — a Listening Session hosted by the Women's Foundation of California brought together women from diverse backgrounds to discuss the issues and opportunities that mattered most to them. At the heart of their discussion was one, consistent obstacle: a lack of available leadership training and opportunities. ACT was formed as a solution to that problem. Their Female Leadership Academy is an intensive 8-month program that trains women in public speaking, negotiation, activism, and other critical leadership skills. They also provide a range of services — like a pregnancy support group — to help women balance life at home with ongoing career opportunities.
Mammoth Medical Missions (MMM) is a volunteer organization based in Mammoth Lakes, California, that provides medical, surgical and general health-care relief and education to underserved rural and mountain communities worldwide, as well as rapid emergency medical response and field triage in case of large-scale disaster and/or mass casualty. One great example of their work? This year, MMM sent a team of trained medical volunteers and support staff to the highlands of Chiapas, one of the poorest and most vulnerable regions in Mexico. Their fourth medical mission to the region since 2009, it was the first to include both a round of no-cost elective surgeries for the indigenous population and intensive skills-training for local medical providers.
From the Top is America’s largest national platform dedicated to celebrating the stories, talents, and character of classically-trained young musicians. Through live events, NPR and YouTube broadcasts, scholarships, and leadership programs, they empower these extraordinary young people to engage and inspire music lovers of all ages. Their classically-trained musicians, ages 8–18, astonish audiences with their skill and talent. Their hard work, dedication, and passion make them role models for their peers (and adults, too!). Yet, when they talk about their lives outside of music, we are reminded that they are typical kids and teenagers, with normal worries and big dreams.
The Public Policy Lab is an innovation lab for government. They use human-centered design to develop better public policies and services, specifically for low-income people and other vulnerable Americans. Their partnership with the New York City Department of Housing Preservation & Development resulted in a rethinking of how low- and middle-income New Yorkers learn about and apply for affordable housing. The tools they have designed have been downloaded more than half a million times, and the agency is scaling up our programs citywide. Their work with the New York City Department of Education led to the development of new apps to help tens of thousands of families navigate the high-school choice process each year; they also worked with the DOE to design new ways for families of students with disabilities to use support services. Public Policy Lab also work beyond our home base in New York City: their leadership team assisted Medicare in redesigning their primary outreach tool to 37 million beneficiaries. They also recently assisted the City of Louisville in developing new approaches to heroin abuse and jail overcrowding. They're helping the U.S. Department of Veterans' Affairs understand challenges around 'on-boarding' veterans into crucial health services. In all these cases, we design better services with the people who will use them - with the goal of making our public programs simple and satisfying to use.
Recycle-A-Bicycle (RAB) is a community-based bike shop that facilitates job training and environmental education. Through innovative programs such as Earn-A-Bike, Green Jobs Training Programs, High School Internships, Recycled Arts Workshops, Summer Youth Employment Program, and Kids Ride Club, RAB is dedicated to the health, development, stewardship, and empowerment of NYC youth. In the past year alone, more than 1,000 RAB youth collectively refurbished 500 bicycles, pedaled 24,000 miles, and burned 1,750,000 calories. On average, RAB salvages 1,800 bicycles each year from the waste stream, diverting a total of 45,000 pounds of waste from NYC's landfills.
Spark is a philanthropic network of young professionals who invest to improve the lives of women around the world. Working locally and globally, they educate and train the next generation of philanthropists with crowd-sourced grants, pro bono professional services and connections for investment in grassroots women’s organizations. Established in 2004 as the group effort of just even women, Spark has grown to include over 11,000 women and men around the world — from Peru, where the organization Estrategia trains women in the manufacturing of construction supplies, to New York City, where they support the Young Women of Color HIV/AIDS Foundation.
Housing Works engages in an array of advocacy strategies to further our mission of ending the twin crises of AIDS and homelessness: traditional government lobbying; regular legislative visits in Albany by HIV-positive clients; civil disobedience and street protests; and impact litigation. This inside-plus-outside pressure on elected officials has made Housing Works a force to be reckoned with on the local, state, national, and international levels. Housing Works maintains advocacy offices in New York City, Albany, Washington, D.C., and Port-au-Prince, Haiti. They also maintain close partnerships with the Haitian AIDS organizations Fondation Esther Boucicault Stanislas and Plateforme Haitienne des Association PVVIH and the Puerto Rican harm reduction group Intercambios Puerto Rico.
For over 20 years, Project Appleseed has been an effective advocacy organization that engages public school families by mobilizing volunteers, building responsibility and promoting accountability — both at school and at home. With a focus on low-income and under-served families and schools, Project Appleseed works to improve schools, build public awareness, enable public engagement, advance policy positions and advise elected officials and other decision-makers on best practices for creating optimal educational environments. The effect of their efforts is clear: academic achievement rises in tandem with parental involvement.
Rails-to-Trails Conservancy (RTC) is dedicated to creating a nationwide network of trails from former rail lines and connecting corridors to build healthier places for healthier people. RTC serves as the national voice for more than 160,000 members and supporters, 30,000 miles of rail-trails and multi-use trails, and more than 8,000 miles of potential trails waiting to be built, with a goal of creating more walkable, bikeable communities in America. Since 1986, they have worked from coast to coast, supporting the development of thousands of miles of rail-trails for millions to explore and enjoy.
City Blossoms began nine years ago as a volunteer project and has since evolved into a year-round program that includes consulting, curriculum development (with consideration for learning standards), and regular on-site workshops. To date, City Blossoms has worked with over 3000 children and youth in various gardening projects, providing them with a unique, art-based, hands-on approach that emphasizes the strengths and unique qualities of each learning center. They have also designed a unique method of developing and managing robust green spaces where children and youth are engaged as the main cultivators.
MASS Design Group began in 2008 during the design and building of the Butaro District Hospital in Rwanda; a project of Partners In Health and the Rwandan Ministry of Health. Since then, MASS has expanded to work on three continents with projects spanning the design of buildings, research, policy, education, and strategic planning. Their work seeks to provide infrastructure, buildings, and the human and physical systems necessary for growth, dignity, and well-being — a range that encompasses everything from intensive educational courses on building for infectious disease control to the construction of primary schools.
Founded by survivors of Liberia's civil war, Last Mile Health (LMH) is committed to saving lives in the world's most remote villages. Working in remote rainforest communities cut off from even basic life-saving health services, LMH is building a health system that reaches everyone - by bringing health care directly to villagers' doorsteps. LMH trains, equips, and supervises community members to be health practitioners for their villages and then connects them with rural health clinics to offer every person access to the care they deserve. These Frontline Health Workers are able to prevent, diagnose, and treat the top ten most life-threatening health conditions in Liberia, and therefore are transforming access to health services and health outcomes in the region.
Since 1984, TADA! has been providing young people of all different backgrounds, including a large number of disadvantaged children and families, the opportunity to explore and perform musical theater together in an educational, supportive, and professional environment. Every year, TADA! produces three original musical theater productions with a discounted ticket program; free pre-professional training and youth development opportunities through the Resident Youth Ensemble composed of over 80 NYC kids ages 8-18; renowned Arts Education in-school residencies and after-school programs that are subsidized by our funders; and theater classes for kids of all ages taught by professional teaching artists and for which need-based scholarships are readily available.
Founded in 2007, The Forgotten International tries to serve the poorest of the poor, many of whom survive on around one U.S. dollar a day. They attempt to assist programs and organizations which seek to lift or move people out of extreme poverty, by providing educational and/or vocational scholarships, humanitarian supplies, skilled volunteers, or small grants for improvement projects in communities that need it the most. They also strive to raise public awareness on the problem of the global poverty and push for the ongoing implementation of solutions that address the issue at its roots.
The No Kid Hungry campaign connects kids in need with nutritious food and teaches their families how to cook healthy, affordable meals. The campaign also engages the public to make ending child hunger a national priority — connecting kids to effective nutrition programs like school breakfast and summer meals. They also offer the Cooking Matters program, which provides families the tools they need to cook healthy meals and stretch their food budgets. Participants learn to shop strategically, use nutrition information to make healthier food choices, and cook delicious, affordable meals. The No Kid Hungry campaign also works to shine a national spotlight on the crisis of child hunger in America, creating a powerful movement of individuals committed to bold action.
World Neighbors is an international development organization striving to eliminate hunger, poverty and disease in the poorest, most isolated rural villages in Asia, Africa and Latin America. World Neighbors does not give away food or material aid — instead, they focus on training and educating communities to find lasting solutions to the challenges they face, such as hunger, poverty and disease. Currently, around 500,000 people benefit from World Neighbors program work in 13 countries in Asia, Africa, Latin America and the Caribbean. During their 62 years of experience, more than 26 million people in 45 countries have transformed their lives with the support of World Neighbors and their partners.
Good Sports helps to lay the foundation for healthy, active lifestyles by providing athletic equipment, footwear, and apparel to disadvantaged young people nationwide. Working closely with teams, coaches, and community leaders throughout the United States, this nonprofit is able to focus on the respective needs of each individual program and help to offset the main factors that are causing the greatest challenges. As a result of the donations they've distributed, recipients have been able to do one or more of the following: increase both the quality and quantity of vital equipment; lower participation fees; develop new programs; enhance their ability to maintain the athletes they currently serve; and perhaps most importantly, increase the total amount of kids that are active within their program.
Founded in 1984, The Task Force For Global Health was initially tapped to serve as a Secretariat for a consortium of global health organizations: UNICEF, WHO, The Rockefeller Foundation, The United Nations Development Programme, and the World Bank. These organizations sought Task Force support for a collaborative effort to improve child wellness and survival strategies. With the Task Force as Secretariat for the network, they resolved to work together to develop and implement a plan for global immunization efforts and measures to promote and maintain healthy children and families. Over their 30-year history, their role as neutral convener and collaborator has expanded. Today, their programs include work in three sectors: health system strengthening, immunization and vaccines, and neglected tropical diseases. In each of these areas, we work with partners and communities around the world to provide and improve the resources necessary for better global health for those in need.
myFace, formerly the National Foundation for Facial Reconstruction, was founded to address the all-too-visible plight of those with facial deformity by assuring them access to the comprehensive and highly personalized team care at the Institute of Reconstructive Plastic Surgery (IRPS) at NYU Langone Medical Center. The IRPS provides integrative, highly specialized and personalized team care to all those who request treatment, regardless of the type or severity of the anomaly, the length of treatment, or the family’s ability to afford care.
Willie Mae Rock Camp for Girls is a music and mentoring program that empowers girls and women through music education, volunteerism, and activities that foster self-respect, leadership skills, creativity, critical thinking, and collaboration. Founded in 2004 by a group of New York City women musicians as a grassroots effort, the organization brings together girls and women from diverse communities and encourages them to explore self-expression through music. Participants hone their critical thinking skills, build meaningful alliances with other girls and women, develop confidence in making healthy choices in their lives, and effect positive change in their communities and in the world.
Galapagos Conservancy (GC) is dedicated exclusively to the long-term protection of the Galapagos Islands. This single focus allows us to maximize the impact of the financial investments of our members, who include individuals and institutions that care deeply about the Galapagos Islands and understand the scientific importance of preserving this extraordinary ecosystem.
Wishbone sends low-income high school students from New York City, the Bay Area, Los Angeles and Connecticut to empowering, educational summer programs. Through exclusive tuition discounts from program partners, crowd-sourced campaign funding, and negotiated corporate and foundation sponsorships, they are able to help a growing number of students afford program opportunities to pursue their passions. Their students share updates about their experience with donors online and by email. After finishing their program, they return to classrooms more engaged — inspiring peers with a heightened sense of personal motivation and involvement in their education.
Waves For Water works on the front-lines to provide clean water to communities in need around the world. Partnering with government agencies and other nonprofits, the work to integrate sustainable, clean water solutions in developing or post-crisis areas. For example, they recently developed and helped install the large water filters in Haiti that helped effectively combat the post-earthquake cholera outbreak. They've also partnered with Hurley International to create a DIY volunteer program that asks traveling surfers to pack small-scale water filters in their luggage, then install them in neighborhoods local to their destinations. With these filters, dirty water becomes instantly clean – and drinkable. Lives are saved.
Once upon a time, there was a storefront in Hunts Point where neighborhood teens, working with a graduate school curriculum, made movies. And they were good. Real good. Then the horizons expanded, and students eventually took their talents abroad with a paid project that launched an alumni-led production company. A cool director took notice and jumped in, along with a new Mayor who understood art, business and education. These titans would get the creative industry and The City of New York together to help make the first film high school in the land — a selective academic public high school offering a rigorous liberal arts curriculum that is grounded in creative activity. (That's a wrap.)
Play Like A Girl is on a mission! They inspire girls everywhere to live happier and healthier by promoting physical activity as a path to lifelong success. Specifically, they offer an active after-school program for girls in grades 3-8, sports uniform scholarships, fitness and nutrition workshops for college-age women, community events, developmental camps and mentoring. A grassroots movement at heart, they're committed to creating a positive impact that reaches beyond health to improve girls’ self-esteem, relationships, academic performance and more. Since 2004, they’ve empowered thousands of girls in the Deep South — leveraging the collective power of women to unite and activate change on behalf of girls everywhere.
Now in its fifth decade, the Guttmacher Institute continues to advance sexual and reproductive health and rights through an interrelated program of research, policy analysis and public education designed to generate new ideas, encourage enlightened public debate and promote sound policy and program development. The Institute’s overarching goal is to ensure the highest standard of sexual and reproductive health for all people worldwide.
Wellness in the Schools (WITS) inspires healthy eating, environmental awareness and fitness as a way of life for kids in public schools. Through meaningful public/private partnerships with school leadership, teachers, chefs, coaches, parents and kids, WITS develops and implements programs that provide healthy foods, healthy environments and opportunities for regular play to help kids learn and grow.
The National Eating Disorders Association (NEDA) is a non-profit organization dedicated to supporting individuals and families affected by eating disorders , and serves as a catalyst for prevention, cures and access to quality care. They campaign for prevention, improved access to quality treatment, and increased research funding to better understand and treat eating disorders. They work with partners and volunteers to develop programs and tools to help everyone who seeks assistance.
Leg Up Farm is a therapy center in York County, Pennsylvania, for children with disabilities and developmental delays. Their individually tailored treatment plans, breadth of services, and child-friendly environment in a convenient, centralized location are the keys to success that will improve outcomes for children and families.
Groundswell brings together artists, youth, and community organizations to use art as a tool for social change. Their projects beautify neighborhoods, engage youth in societal and personal transformation, and give expression to ideas and perspectives that are underrepresented in the public dialogue. Their vision of youth development is to engage underserved, marginalized, and economically disadvantaged youth in public art-making to gain the inspiration, tools, and agency to take ownership of their futures
The Vera Institute of Justice combines expertise in research, demonstration projects, and technical assistance to help leaders in government and society improve the systems people rely upon for justice and safety. Today, Vera staff are leading more than two dozen separate projects that aim to reveal more about the meaning of justice even as they make a difference in the lives of individuals. Every Vera project begins with an examination of how a targeted part of the justice system really works. Often, this inspires the design of a practical experiment or the development of a rational course for reform. Whatever path a project takes, Vera's goal is to help government partners achieve measurable improvements in the quality of justice they deliver and to share what they've learned with people around the world. The result: Justice systems that are fairer, more humane, and more effective for everyone.
Opened in 1943, New York City Center's (NYCC) mission is to make the finest in the performing arts accessible to the broadest possible audience, while insuring that its landmark facility remains an active and welcoming venue to both audiences and artists throughout the year. NYCC accomplishes this mission by celebrating and preserving the American musical theater heritage through performances, score restorations and other archival activities; presenting and producing new and innovative programming resonant of NYCC's artistic history, with a specific emphasis on dance; supporting resident and visiting companies and artists; providing educational opportunities to NYC students and their teachers; and maintaining and enhancing the physical facilities that comprise the performing arts center.
Teaching Matters is dedicated to increasing teacher effectiveness, one of the most critical factors in student success. Their services — such as a Teacher Toolkit that outlines best practices for curriculum planning and student assessment — transform how educators work together at urban public schools, helping the most effective teachers develop the skills they need to lead their peers and drive school-wide improvement. They also partner with school leadership to create a work environment that equips teachers to succeed in the classroom. mission is to develop and retain great teachers, and measurably increase their ability to give students in urban public schools an excellent education.
Founded in 1991, the Anthony Robbins Foundation works to empower individuals and organizations to make a significant difference in the quality of life for people who are often forgotten; youth, homeless and hungry, prisoners, elderly and disabled. With programs and outreach happening in more than 2,000 schools, 700 prisons, and 100,000 health and human service organizations, the organizations impact is far reaching and life-changing: their International Basket Brigade provides baskets of food and household items for an estimated two million people annually in countries all over the world, their Inmate Program provides educational resources to tens of thousands of youth, and their Youth Leadership Program provides the training and opportunity for young people to make a difference in their communities.
Founded in 1977, the National Center for Learning Disabilities (NCLD) works to ensure that the nation's 15 million children, adolescents and adults with learning disabilities have every opportunity to succeed in school, work and life. NCLD provides essential information to parents, professionals and individuals with learning disabilities, promotes research and programs to foster effective learning, and advocates for policies to protect and strengthen educational rights and opportunities. Since its beginning, NCLD has been led by passionate and devoted parents committed to creating better outcomes for children, adolescents and adults with learning disabilities.
1 in 7 Americans are hungry — including more than 1 in 5 children. The good news is that we can do something about this. And at Foodlink, they are. Equipped with a mission to end hunger, build self-sufficiency, and foster nutritional wellness, Foodlink rescues and redistributes over nine million pounds of food annually to a network of 550 member agencies. In addition, they provides food to hundreds of non-emergency programs such as group homes, day cares, senior centers and camps. The impact of their efforts? Last year alone, Foodlink distributed over 18 million pounds of food—including 3.6 million pounds of produce, offered more than 200 nutrition education courses, and created new access points for healthy foods in underserved communities.
For over 60 years, The Rodale Institute has been a pioneer in organic research, education and outreach, advocating organic food production techniques as a means of renewing human and environmental health. The Institute's research program helped launch today's organic movement and continues to direct cutting-edge trials documenting the ability of organic farming to reverse global warming — all from a modest, 333-acre education and research center located in rural Philadelphia. Today, their international program is providing locally-adapted solutions to the issues of nutrition, hunger, poverty and community degradation across the world.
NEO Philanthropy operates grant making and technical assistance programs for foundations and individual donors interested in social justice and human rights issues. By developing sustainable partnerships among donors, grantees and allied groups, NEO Philanthropy seeks to foster positive social change that results in equality, fairness and a stronger participatory democracy. For more than 30 years, they have served as a bridge between donors and grantees that unites the knowledge, networks and experiences of both. Together, they learn from and engage in mutually supportive efforts that inspire a passion for change.
The Colon Cancer Alliance (CCA) is the oldest and largest national patient advocacy organization dedicated to ending the suffering caused by colorectal cancer. In order to increase rates of screening and survivorship, the CCA provides patient support, public education, supports research and conducts advocacy work across America. They offers information and support from the first-hand experience of survivors and others whose lives have been touched by this disease. Today, the CCA provides information and services to hundreds of thousands each year and they maintain multiple programs designed to both assist those affected by the disease as well as raise awareness to improve screening rates.
Founded in 1977, The Hunger Project is a global, strategic organization committed to the sustainable end of world hunger. Their programs throughout Africa, South Asia and Latin America are based on an innovative, holistic approach, which empowers women and men living in rural villages to become the agents of their own development and make sustainable progress in overcoming hunger and poverty. One great example of their work: In Africa, they strive to mobilize clusters of rural villages into “epicenters,” which band together 5,000-15,000 people to carry out community-led integrated strategies to meet basic needs. Women and men then create and run their own development programs, reaching 1.6 million people in their communities. By empowering people to lead lives of self-reliance, entire communities are able to build better futures for themselves and their children.
Public Counsel is the nation's largest public interest law firm specializing in delivering pro bono legal services to low-income communities. Founded in 1970, they've worked continually to provided individuals and institutions in underserved communities with access to quality legal representation. Their landmark cases have helped protect the legal rights of disadvantaged children, fight for the inclusion and maintenance of affordable housing in community-building efforts, provide representation to individuals at high risk for homelessness, and fight for the educational rights of underserved youth in California. The cumulative impact of their work is tremendous — they annually assist more than 30,000 families, children, immigrants veterans, and nonprofit organizations and habitually address systemic poverty and civil rights issues through their impact litigation and policy advocacy.
Founded in 1947, Defenders of Wildlife is one of the country's leaders in science-based, results-oriented wildlife conservation. We are committed to saving imperiled wildlife and championing the Endangered Species Act, the landmark law that protects them. Defenders of Wildlife is a national membership organization dedicated to the protection of all native animals and plants in their natural communities. We work to protect and restore America's native wildlife, safeguard habitat, resolve conflicts, work across international borders and educate and mobilize the public.
Established in 1910, The Urban League is the nation's oldest and largest community- based movement devoted to empowering African Americans to enter the economic and social mainstream. Today, the National Urban League, headquartered in New York City, spearheads the non-partisan efforts of its local affiliates. There are over 100 local affiliates of the National Urban League located in 35 states and the District of Columbia providing direct services to more than two million people nationwide through programs, advocacy and research. The mission of the Urban League movement is to enable African Americans to secure economic self-reliance, parity, power and civil rights.
Over 20 years ago, ForKids was founded by local citizens to shelter families in the Ocean View neighborhood of Norfolk. After opening a 30-day emergency shelter, those same citizens quickly found that short-term shelter was not an adequate solution for family homelessness and they embarked upon a new mission to “break the cycle of family homelessness.” In the succeeding years, ForKids expanded their services to include longer stays, clinical services, and additional properties. Their work has not only provided a safer community, but pioneered an award-winning approach to combatting homelessness and giving families another chance at happy, fulfilling lives.
Best Buddies International is dedicated to establishing a global volunteer movement that creates opportunities for one-to-one friendships, integrated employment and leadership development for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD). Founded in 1989 by Anthony Kennedy Shriver, Best Buddies has grown from one original chapter to more than 2,000 college, high school and middle school campuses across the country and internationally, with programs that positively impact more than 400,000 individuals each year. Their work ranges from creating inclusive social climates for middle school students with IDD all the way to supported employment programs that secure competitive paying jobs for adults.
Founded in 1966, The Poetry Project began as a natural extension of New York City's newly flourishing literary scene and quickly took root as institution where community-based artworks could find the resources, talent, and audience to thrive. Founded by luminaries such as Allen Ginsberg, the Project's mission was to support the creation and promotion of contemporary poetry to an increasingly diverse audience, while offering a space for poets and artists to collaborate. With more than five decades now under their belt, it would be easy to call their mission a (big) success. Today, they continue to offer live programming, publications, events, and workshops to an array of writers both contemporary and established. They also host an annual marathon reading on New Year's Eve, archive their work with Library of Congress, and — most importantly — offer continual encouragement to hundreds of budding writers.
Two decades ago, DreamYard was just an idea — one sparked by a group of young people who wanted to see a place where kids could go to dream. Now, their idea has developed into the largest arts organization in the Bronx, drawing on the surrounding neighborhood and public schools to create Two decades ago, DreamYard was just an idea — one sparked by a group of young people who wanted to create a safe space for kids to dream, create, and make art. Today, their idea has developed into the largest arts organization in the Bronx, changing the lives of thousands of public school students, teachers, and community members. They offer a combination of in school programs, which bring together dozens of public schools in an effort to integrate art into regular school curriculums, and high school preparatory initiatives. Their Art Center also offers nationally-recognized programming across different art forms that include theatre, poetry, dance, visual arts, photography, video, music and audio production, fashion design, and Maker projects.
MusiCares provides a safety net of critical assistance for music people in times of need. Their services and resources cover a wide range of financial, medical and personal emergencies, and focus the resources and attention of the music industry on human service issues that directly impact the health and welfare of the music community. MusiCares programs include emergency financial assistance for struggling music people; addiction recovery support groups; and outreach activities to educate members of the music industry and the public-at-large about available human service opportunities.
Surgicorps International provides free surgical and medical care to disadvantaged individuals in developing countries — people who lack access to the most basic health care including specialty reconstructive surgery for the treatment of cleft lips and palates, severe burn scar deformities, and any number of acquired or congenital defects. Their work doesn't end with basic treatment, though. Surgicorps volunteers strive to connect on an individual level with the communities they serve, fostering an exchange of knowledge and experience that result in lasting improvements to patient care and overall community betterment.
Through education, organizing and physical fitness, Girls for Gender Equity encourages communities to remove barriers and create opportunities for girls and women to live self-determined lives. Some of their initiatives include "Hey Shorty!", a campaign to counteract sexual harassment in schools, and Sisters in Strength, a youth organizing program that combats gender-based violence and confronts the multiple layers of individual and institutional discrimination that threaten the safety of girls and women. They also run the Urban Leaders Academy — a holistic program designed to advance leadership skills, social justice values, and self-determination within young people of color.
Founded in 1974, Bread for the City provides vulnerable residents of Washington, DC with comprehensive services including food, clothing, medical care, legal, and social services in an atmosphere of dignity and respect. They promote the mutual collaboration of clients, volunteers, donors, staff, and other community partners to alleviate the suffering caused by poverty and to rectify the conditions that perpetuate it. Today, Bread for the City offers its six primary programs from our two centers in Northwest and Southeast D.C. They serve an average of 10,000 D.C. residents every month, totaling more than 32,000 individuals annually.
Founded in 1970, GrowNYC is a hands-on non-profit which improves New York City's quality of life through environmental programs that transform communities block by block and empower all New Yorkers to secure a clean and healthy environment for future generations. Whether it's operating the world famous Union Square Greenmarket, building a new community garden, teaching young people about the environment, or improving recycling awareness, GrowNYC strives to create self-sustaining, widely accessible spaces that help make New York a little greener and a whole lot lovelier.
BRAC is a development success story, spreading solutions born in Bangladesh to 10 other countries around the world - a global leader in creating opportunity for the world's poor. What started out as a limited relief operation in 1972 in a remote village of Bangladesh has turned into the largest development organization in the world. Organizing the poor using communities' own human and material resources, it catalyses lasting change, creating an ecosystem in which the poor have the chance to seize control of their own lives. We do this with a holistic development approach geared toward inclusion, using tools like microfinance, education, healthcare, legal services, community empowerment and more. Our work now touches the lives of an estimated 126 million people in 11 countries. BRAC USA is a US affiliate created in 2007 to advance and support BRAC's global mission.
Since 1966, Riverkeeper has sought to protect the ecological integrity of the Hudson River and its tributaries — better known as the drinking water supply for all of New York City and the lower Hudson Valley. Their work has helped to establish globally recognized standards for waterway and watershed protection and serve as the model and mentor for the growing Waterkeeper movement that includes more than more than 180 Keeper programs across the country and around the globe. Riverkeeper is an independent, member-supported environmental organization founded on the premise that citizens themselves must roll up their sleeves to defend our waterways.
The Doe Fund's mission is to develop and implement cost-effective, holistic programs that meet the needs of a diverse population working to break the cycles of homelessness, addiction, and criminal recidivism. All of The Doe Fund's programs and innovative business ventures ultimately strive to help homeless and formerly incarcerated individuals achieve permanent self-sufficiency. One great example? The Doe Fund's signature enterprise cleans and maintains 150 miles of New York City's streets, with their iconic "men in blue" helping to create a cleaner, greener, and safer New York City through several services, including sweeping and bagging litter, shoveling snow, removing graffiti, watering and cleaning tree beds, and washing sidewalks. Each year, the men in blue clear out approximately 9,000 tons of garbage while they build critical life skills like work ethic, punctuality, and team work.
Books for Kids was created in 1986 by a group of New Yorkers who recognized that children who do not have adequate access to books must surmount enormous disadvantages when entering school. Beginning as an informal project to collect and distribute 1,000 books to needy children for the holidays, the initiative quickly took on much greater dimensions — the amount of donated books grew nearly tenfold in the subsequent years. (A total of 9,000 were given away during the second year of operation.) Today, Books for Kids has expanded their operations to include creating libraries, regularly donating thousands of books, and implementing literacy programs to develop the critical early foundation and skills which young children need to be successful in life.
Creative Capital supports innovative and adventurous artists across the country through funding, counsel and career development services. Since 1999, they have committed $35 million in financial and advisory support to hundreds of projects and artists, and their Professional Development Program has reached nearly 10,000 artists in over 400 communities. Together, their community of artists have premiered films at Sundance Film Festival, opened works of art at the Museum of Modern Art, and the Venice Biennale, and staged plays on Broadway — contributing a rich array of cultural works to some of the greatest artistic institutions of our generation.
Founded in 1988, City Year works to bridge the gap in high-poverty communities between the support the students in the communities actually need and what their schools are designed to provide. They're singular approach begins by carefully selecting a group of highly trained young adults — corp members — and connecting them with at-risk students to provide individualized support. In doing so, City Year creates an overall positive learning environment that has a lasting impact on both the lives of students, corp members, and community members as a whole.
Child Foundation helps children in need, who have been identified as high achievers, to remain in school. Since 1994, Child Foundation has provided basic necessities to children living in poverty or hardship. By providing access to education, Child Foundation hopes to eliminate children prematurely leaving school, and, in certain countries, early matrimony. They believe that education can move a child beyond the stigma of poverty, and give that child the tools to reach his or her true potential.
Love146 is an international human rights organization working to end child trafficking and exploitation through survivor care and prevention. They began in 2002, building and expanding safe homes in Asia and training grassroots aftercare workers with knowledge in best practices and equipping them with practical tools to be even more effective. In 2008, they opened our Round Home for girls in the Philippines, and since then have added three more additional survivor care locations, serving both boys and girls in the Philippines, the U.S. and the U.K. They also offer Prevention Education, a program that aims to reach children long before traffickers do. To date, they've taught thousands of U.S. children in classroom and community settings, equipping them to recognize vulnerabilities and protect themselves and their peers from exploitation.
Founded in 2002, the Myelin Repair Foundation (MRF) is the world's largest research organization exclusively focused on developing the next generation of treatments for multiple sclerosis — myelin repair. Myelin repair is the only current research approach that has the potential to actually repair nerve damage and halt the progress of multiple sclerosis. Their work is organized around one guiding principle: to get a safe and effective myelin repair treatment to patients as quickly as humanly possible. Today, they are on track toward the first myelin repair phase one clinical trial by 2014. Since its founding, the MRF has garnered attention of more than 70 research organizations, media, and government agencies.
Founded in 1979, Artspace Projects works to create, foster and preserve affordable space for artists and arts organizations. They pursue this mission through development projects, asset management activities, consulting services, and community-building activities that serve artists and arts organizations of all disciplines, cultures, and economic circumstances. By creating this space, Artspace supports the continued professional growth of artists and enhances the cultural and economic vitality of the surrounding community. In the last few years, Artspace has further expanded its mission to incorporate the planning and development of performing arts centers, museums, other arts facilities, and entire arts districts throughout the country.
LIFT's mission is to help community members achieve economic stability and well-being. They are working to establish a new standard for holistic and enduring solutions in our country's fight against poverty, working one-on-one with community members in order to find jobs, secure safe and stable housing, make ends meet through public benefits and tax credits, and obtain quality referrals for services like childcare and healthcare. Simultaneously, the LIFT experience pushes volunteers to grapple with our country's most challenging issues related to poverty, race, inequality, and policy. Since LIFT's founding, over 6,000 volunteers have served more than 40,000 individuals and families.
OPERA America is dedicated to supporting the creation, presentation and enjoyment of opera. Drawing on resources and expertise from within and beyond the opera field, they advance a mutually beneficial agenda that serves and strengthens the field through myriad programs, including resources for the creation and presentation of new works, aid with audience development, and services that address the specific needs of staff, trustees, and volunteers. Since it's founding in 1970, OPERA America has grown an international membership that includes nearly 2,500 members, based all around the world. They also created the National Opera Center, which serves many functions that support the artistic and economic vitality of the field by providing its constituents with a range and level of services never before possible.
Ashoka is the largest network of social entrepreneurs worldwide, with nearly 3,000 Ashoka Fellows in 70 countries putting their system changing ideas into practice on a global scale. Founded in 1980, Ashoka has provided start-up financing, professional support services, and connections to a global community, and a platform for people dedicated to changing the world. Their innovative Youth Venture program has empowered nearly 5,000 teams of young people have launched and led their own community-serving ventures — projects that now serve over 1 million people.
Amigos de las Américas (AMIGOS) inspires and builds young leaders through collaborative community development and immersion in cross-cultural experiences. Founded in 1965 in Houston, AMIGOS is an international organization that provides unparalleled leadership and community service opportunities for young people while concurrently contributing to the well-being of hundreds of communities throughout the Americas. Supported by a strong network of Pan-American chapters, high school and college students from diverse backgrounds immerse themselves in the lives of their host communities and truly experience collaborative development work. During its 50-year history, more than 25,000 AMIGOS Volunteers have gained a life-long commitment to community service, while strengthening multicultural understanding and friendships in the Americas.
Founded in 1998, Half the Sky Foundation (HTS) was created in order to enrich the lives and enhance the prospects for orphaned children in China. They establish and operate infant nurture and preschool programs, provide personalized learning for older children and establish loving permanent family care, medical care, and guidance for children with disabilities. It is their goal to ensure that every orphaned child has a caring adult in her life and a chance at a bright future. Since Half the Sky began its work in China, more than fifty thousand children have benefited from one or more of their five innovative programs: The Infant Nurture Program; The Little Sisters Preschool Program; The Youth Services Program; and The Family Village Program; and the China Care Home.
Better Basics strives to make a positive difference in the lives of children and their families by advancing literacy through enrichment and intervention programs. In the last year alone, more than 500 volunteers served over 16,000 children — awarding more than 40,000 books. Their programs aim to empower students as they progress along the learning continuum, from reading to comprehension to retention, while infusing literature into their homes and exposing them to multi-cultural arts and enrichment programs. As they increase childhood literacy rates today, they succeed in diminishing future adult illiteracy issues and their various side effects, creating innumerable benefits for our society as a whole.
For over 50 years, Americans for the Arts' mission is to serve the community of organizations and individuals who cultivate, promote, and support the arts in America. In addition to connecting artists with peers, opportunities, and essential funding, this nonprofit also provides extensive opportunities for leadership, research, and advocacy: their digital advocacy hub provides the resources and tools necessary to empower grassroots activists to speak with local, state, and federal leaders and their research arm sources the data to demonstrate the social, economic, and and educational benefits of the arts.
Indego Africa supports women in Rwanda through economic empowerment and education. Their mission is to break intergenerational cycles of poverty by providing female artisans with the tools and support to reclaim their own futures, flourish as independent businesswoman, and drive development in their communities. Today, they work with 18 different artisan groups across Rwanda, employing over 600 women that support 2,200+ children and other dependents.
International Medical Corps (IMC) is a global humanitarian organization dedicated to saving lives and relieving suffering through health care training and relief and development programs. Established in 1984 by volunteer doctors and nurses, IMC is a private, voluntary, nonpolitical, nonsectarian organization. Its mission is to improve the quality of life through health interventions and related activities that build local capacity in underserved communities worldwide. By offering training and health care to local populations and medical assistance to people at highest risk, and with the flexibility to respond rapidly to emergency situations, International Medical Corps rehabilitates devastated health care systems and helps bring them back to self-reliance.
In the face of some of the world's most intractable conflicts, Seeds of Peace gives rise to new generations of leaders uniquely inspired and equipped to build lasting peace. Since 1993, they have set the standard in international peace-building by providing exceptional young people and educators from regions of conflict with an otherwise impossible opportunity to meet their historic enemies face-to-face at our International Camp in Maine, where year-round local programs focus on the core leadership capacities needed to advance peace. There are now over 5,000 Seeds and Educators from 27 countries who prove that solutions exist, peace is possible, and there is reason to have hope for a better future.
The Nashville Philharmonic Orchestra is an all-volunteer community orchestra featuring amateur and professional players from throughout Middle Tennessee. Their mission is to offer area orchestral musicians with opportunities to perform while providing high-quality symphonic music free of charge to a wide variety of audiences.
For more than 60 years, The Arc has been on the front lines in making change happen for people diagnosed with Autism, Down syndrome, Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder, and a range of diagnoses across the spectrum of intellectual and developmental disabilities. Their nearly 700 state and local chapters provide a voice at the local and state legislative levels for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities and their families. They also provide support and services, including individual advocacy, residential support, employment programs, and numerous community-driven recreational opportunities.
The mission of the Government Accountability Project is to protect the public interest through promoting government and corporate accountability, advancing occupational free speech and ethical conduct, defending whistleblowers and empowering citizen activists. They pursue this mission through their Nuclear Safety, International Reform, Corporate Accountability, Public Health & Safety, Food Integrity, Homeland Security, Climate Science Watch, Litigation, and Legislation programs.
Founded in 1945, CARE is a leading humanitarian organization fighting global poverty. Their mission is to serve individuals and families in the poorest communities in the world. Drawing strength from our global diversity, resources and experience, they facilitate lasting change by: strengthening capacity for self-help; providing economic opportunity; delivering relief in emergencies; influencing policy decisions at all levels; and addressing discrimination in all its forms. They place special focus on working alongside poor women because, equipped with the proper resources, women have the power to help whole families and entire communities definitively escape poverty.
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The Women's Community Revitalization Project is committed to social and economic justice for low-income women and their families. They develop housing and neighborhood facilities; provide supportive services; advocate for policy change; and honor leadership, dignity, and equity in communities. They accomplish their work through four key programs: Affordable Housing Development; Supportive Services for Families; Leadership and Advocacy; and Facilities Development. The Women's Community Revitalization Project values low-income women and their families and their power to make decisions that improve their lives. We honor leaders in our community, find solutions to any challenge, and bring hope and possibility to the women that they serve.
For 43 years, Ballet Hispanico has been America's leading Latino dance organization. The Company boasts a rich and diverse repertory of over 100 works by the foremost choreographers and emerging artists of our time, performed to critical acclaim all over the world. They also strive to expand and enrich the dancing community through their Education & Outreach program, which affords an innovative exploratory learning experience for 20,000 school children, teachers and parents, and their arts-in-education residencies, which bring Latino dance and culture to public schools, enriching common core curriculum goals and supporting social and emotional development.
Population Media Center (PMC) strives to improve the health and well-being of people around the world through the use of entertainment-education strategies, like serialized dramas on radio and television, in which characters evolve into role models for the audience for positive behavior change. They collaborate with the mass media and other organizations worldwide to bring about stabilization of human population numbers at a level that can be sustained by the world's natural resources and lessen the harmful impact of humanity on the earth's environment. The emphasis of the organization's work is to educate people about the benefits of small families, encourage the use of effective family planning methods, elevate women's status and promote gender equity.
Feeding America is the nationwide network of 200 food banks that leads the fight against hunger in the United States. Together, they provide food to more than 46 million people through 60,000 food pantries and meal programs in communities across America, in addition to supporting programs that improve food security among the people we serve; educates the public about the problem of hunger; and advocates for legislation that protects people from going hungry. Individuals, charities, businesses and government all have a role in ending hunger.
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Center for Resource Solutions (CRS) creates policy and market solutions to advance sustainable energy, in an effort to develop expert responses to climate change issues with the speed and effectiveness necessary to provide real-time solutions. Its leadership through collaboration and environmental innovation builds policies and consumer-protection mechanisms in renewable energy, greenhouse gas reductions, and energy efficiency that foster healthy and sustained growth in national and international markets.
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Founded in 1853, The Children's Aid Society (CAS) works to ensure the physical and emotional well-being of children and families, and to provide each child with the support and opportunities needed to become a happy, healthy and productive adult. Over the past 150 years, CAS has served more than 150,000 children and their families at more than 45 sites throughout New York City — providing them with services and resources from prenatal counseling all the way through college preparatory training programs.
Access defends and extends the digital rights of users at risk around the world. By combining innovative policy, user engagement, and direct technical support, they hope to achieve for open and secure communications for all. Founded in the wake of the 2009 Iranian post-election crackdown, Access teams with digital activists and civil society groups internationally to build their technical capacity and to help them advocate globally for their digital rights. They also provide thought leadership and practical policy recommendations in the broader field of internet freedoms, from expanding internet access in areas where it is restricted to campaigning for transparent corporate data policies.
Young Women's Leadership Network helps low-income minority youth break the cycle of poverty through education. Their two critical programs provide college readiness and access to at-risk students from the 6th - 12th grades: CollegeBound Initiative, a school-based college guidance program for coed and single-sex public schools, and The Young Women's Leadership Schools, a high-performing network of all-girls public schools. They are in the business of raising expectations, improving student performance, and inspiring leadership. Their first school, which made history and headlines, is the highly renowned and successful Young Women's Leadership School of East Harlem in New York City.
The mission of India Development and Relief Fund is to empower marginalized people with skills, services and infrastructure grounded in sustainable development. Across India and Nepal, they provide support for programs that improve education, healthcare, women's empowerment, governance, and eco-friendly livelihoods in poor communities, with a special focus on women and children living in rural areas.
Homeless Prenatal Program helps expecting, homeless women to secure stable income and safe housing, so they're able to raise happy, healthy children. Since their founding in 1989, they've served over 85,000 families — providing them housing assistance, prenatal and parenting education, substance abuse services, ESL classes, immigration support services, and more. By empowering women with the skills and resources to work, Homeless Prenatal Program is able to help bring about lasting change (and new opportunities) for tens of thousands of children.
The Urban Justice Center serves New York City's most vulnerable residents through a combination of direct legal service, systemic advocacy, community education and political organizing. They assist clients on numerous levels, from one-on-one legal advice in soup kitchens, to filing class action lawsuits to bring about systemic change, to pushing social justice legislation forward. They also conduct original research and publish reports in order to raise public awareness, capture the attention of policymakers, and effect systemic change on issues such as welfare reform, prison policies, and police practices. This work is then complied into handbooks, resource guides and training manuals designed to help clients help themselves, as well as to educate and assist service providers and other advocates.
The 1to1 Movement, is an organization focused on raising awareness and making change on the issues of sustainability. By empowering community members to realize the environmental, economic, and health benefits of making sustainable minded decisions, 1to1 believes in motivating communities to feel that they’re an active part of the solution. Their campaigns are simple, easy to participate in, and — most importantly — highly effective. One great example? "The Last Straw" asks restaurants to provide straws to customers only upon request, effectively reducing the number of single use, non-recyclable plastic straws disposed of each year by more than a million.
Mission: Restore exists to provide life changing plastic and reconstructive surgery to children and adults in need. Together, their volunteer surgeons have collectively performed over 1,500 complex reconstructive surgeries in over 20 countries and 4 continents, completing procedures that have helped people suffering from long-lasting, critical injuries to regain their lives. In recent years, they have focused on the most cost-effective and impactful ways to create long term sustainable solutions to the emerging world’s health care needs and are currently working in Myanmar, Tanzania, and Haiti to mentor new doctors, fund their work, and provide needed medical equipment.
The Women's Community Revitalization Project (WCRP) is committed to social and economic justice for low-income women and their families and they work to develop affordable housing and neighborhood facilities; provide supportive services; advocate for policy change; and honor leadership, dignity, and equity. Their work is accomplished through four programs: Affordable Housing Development; Supportive Services for Families; Leadership and Advocacy; and Facilities Development. Women's Community Revitalization Project values low-income women and their families and their power to make decisions that improve their lives.
Founded in 1990, the International Women’s Media Foundation is a vibrant global network dedicated to strengthening the role of women in the news media worldwide as a means to further freedom of the press. The IWMF uses four strategies in its work: building a vibrant network that enables women in the news media to join together in new ways, cultivating effective leaders by offering innovative training programs, pioneering change in public policy, and advocating for the work of women journalists worldwide.
STOMP Out Bullying is the leading national bullying and cyberbullying prevention organization for kids and teens in the U.S. They focus on reducing and preventing bullying, cyberbullying, sexting and other digital abuse, educating against homophobia, racism and hatred, decreasing school absenteeism, and deterring violence in schools, online and in communities across the country. It teaches effective solutions on how to respond to all forms of bullying; as well as educating kids and teens in school and online, providing help for those in need and at risk of suicide, raising awareness, peer mentoring programs in schools, public service announcements by noted celebrities, and social media campaigns. An additional focus educates parents on how to keep their children safe and responsible online.
Vision Maker Media works with Native producers to develop, produce and distribute educational telecommunications programs for all media including public television and public radio. They also support training to increase the number of American Indians and Alaska Natives producing quality public broadcasting programs, which includes advocacy efforts promoting increased control and use of information technologies and the policies to support this control by American Indians and Alaska Natives.
Founded in 2002, Literacy for Incarcerated Teens (LIT) strives to create excellent school libraries in New York's secure juvenile facilities and group homes. Recognizing that literacy needs of detained and incarcerated youth are intertwined with their lack of access to libraries and reading facilities, LIT 's work has ranged from providing curriculum-approved books (for readers ages eight to 17) for libraries at detention centers to youth literacy programming, such as arranging visits and book discussions from celebrated YA authors, including the late Walter Dean Meyers, G. Neri, and Matt de la Peña.
CureSearch for Children’s Cancer accelerates the cure for children’s cancer by driving innovation, eliminating research barriers and solving the field’s most challenging problems. They do this in three ways: they accelerate the cure for children at greatest risk of losing their battle with cancer by posing essential challenges to scientists and inviting teams to overcome them with novel research approaches; they support children’s enrollment in clinical trials that have the potential to save their lives today; they provide resources and education, so no child faces a cancer diagnosis without a fully equipped support team behind them. Ultimately, their work radically changes the odds for those children most at risk — giving them a new chance at life.
The National Alliance on Mental Illness of New York City provides support, education, and advocacy for families and individuals of all ethnic and socio-economic backgrounds who live with mental illness. As the largest affiliate of the National Alliance on Mental Illness, they work collaboratively with New York state and national affiliates, and with other stakeholders in the community, to educate the public, advocate for legislation, reduce stigma, and improve the mental health system. Their national #IWILLLISTEN campaign (pictured above) is dedicated to increasing mental health awareness and encouraging family members and peers to listen to the experiences of individuals living with mental illness without judgement.
National Braille Press (NBP) is a Boston-based braille printing and publishing house founded in 1927. The guiding purposes of NBP are to promote the literacy of blind children through braille, and to provide access to information that empowers blind people to actively engage in work, family, and community affairs. Last year NBP pressed 15 million braille pages using special translation software and computer-driven equipment. They also offer braille books, magazines, textbooks, tests, and embossing services.
The Center for Coastal Studies believes the preservation of marine and coastal habitats and the recovery of species is crucial to the health of all life. Their mission is to conduct scientific research with emphasis on marine mammals of the western North Atlantic and on the coastal and marine habitats and resources of the Gulf of Maine; to promote stewardship of coastal and marine ecosystems; to conduct educational activities and to provide educational resources that encourage the responsible use and conservation of coastal and marine ecosystems; and to collaborate with other institutions and individuals whenever possible to advance the Center's mission.
Project Angel Heart was founded in 1991 to address major challenges facing Coloradans living with a life-threatening illness—getting the nutrition they need to get stronger and remain independent in their homes. Many are too sick to get to the grocery store, have to choose whether to buy food or medication, or are too weak to make themselves or their dependents a meal. From its humble origins as a group of community members delivering donated lasagna to 12 individuals living with HIV/AIDS, it has grown into a thriving organization preparing and delivering delicious, individually modified meals to thousands of Coloradans living with cancer, kidney/heart/lung disease, HIV/AIDS, diabetes, multiple sclerosis and other life-threatening illnesses.
Human Rights Watch documents right abuses around the world with the ultimate goal of ending them and bringing the perpetrators to justice. Established in 1978, they are known for their accurate fact-finding, impartial reporting, effective use of media, and targeted advocacy, often in partnership with local human rights groups. Each year, they publish more than 100 reports and briefings on human rights conditions in some 90 countries, generating extensive coverage in local and international media. With the leverage this brings, Human Rights Watch meets with governments, the United Nations, regional groups like the African Union and the European Union, financial institutions, and corporations to press for changes in policy and practice that promote human rights and justice around the world. The success of their efforts can be measured in many ways — changed laws, launched investigations, the application of international pressure, and the public trials of perpetrators — but each is a step forward in the pursuit of justice and promotion of human rights .
Founded in 1973, TreePeople works to grow a green and climate-resilient Los Angeles — one with enough tree canopy, healthy soil, and clean local water in the city's most urban neighborhoods. They work one-on-one with communities to transform LA’s landscapes into living, healthy watersheds: planting and caring for trees throughout neighborhoods, in schools, on local mountains, and in their local, 45-acre park. They also have deep roots working with policymakers to demonstrate new green and viable infrastructure solutions for a sustainable city.
The National YoungArts Foundation identifies and supports the next generation of artists in the visual, literary, design and performing arts, assists them at critical junctures in their educational and professional development, and raises appreciation for the arts in American society. They provide emerging artists with life-changing connections to renowned mentors, access to significant scholarships, and other opportunities to pursue careers in the arts. To date, YoungArts has honored more than 20,000 alumni and — excitingly! — enabled its participants to work with master teachers who are among the most distinguished artists in the world, such as Marina Abramović, Mikhail Baryshnikov, and Robert Redford.
Founded in 1971, the Support Center for Child Advocates is the country's oldest and largest pro bono legal and social services agency for children. Their mission is to advocate for victims of child abuse and neglect with the goal of securing a permanent, nurturing environment for every child. To date, they are one of the most successful volunteer models serving children in the country. Since its founding, they have trained more than 3,500 attorneys who contribute pro bono services valued at more than $3.5 million annually — transforming the lives of thousands of children.
Africa has a critical shortage of health workers. While there are 90 doctors and nurses for every 1,000 people in the US, there is less than 1 for every 1,000 people in Africa. With this in mind, Amref Health Africa focuses on building health systems and training health workers to address the continent's most critical challenges: maternal and child health, water and sanitation, infectious disease prevention and control, and health worker training. Some examples include their "Stand Up For African Mothers" initiative, which has trained thousands of midwives, ensuring the healthy birth of babies in rural areas without access to traditional medical facilities, and their WASH campaign, which has helped teach tens of thousands of primary school students proper hygienic practices, an effort that helps dramatically lessen their exposure to disease.
Since 1977, The Solar Foundation has been committed to transforming the world through the widespread use of solar energy. In order to accomplish this, they work with both governments — informing solar policy decisions through the delivery of quality analysis and actionable reporting — and the public at large, providing a variety of tools and services to promote clean energy adoption and solar-focused educational opportunities. One great example? Their BDR Memorial Fund will introduce students to solar power by having a total of 20,000 solar energy systems installed at K-12 schools across the nation by the year 2020.
The Global Blood Fund works with health services in low income countries to provide their communities with plentiful, safe blood from volunteer donors. This is a proven and cost-effective way to prevent the thousands of deaths that result each year from blood shortages and avoid the transmission of infections — such as HIV — that devastate lives and families. Today, Global Blood Fund provides financial assistance, equipment and other forms of necessary support to countries in Africa, Asia, the Caribbean and South America. They've also recently expanded their work to include cloud-based delivery of donor recruitment and management tools, allowing them to work collaboratively with partners all around the world.
The Coalition For Engaged Education connects vulnerable youth with both educational opportunities and the lasting support they need in order to fully pursue them. First, they work to create individual relationships with kids, then they connect them with caring adults and match them with optimal educational opportunities in areas they are passionate about. Most critically: once a student begins the learning process, the Coalition stays with them, helping them navigate complex financial aid forms, purchase textbooks, find affordable healthcare and housing, connect with personal tutors, and more.
The Songs For Kids Foundation aims to enrich the lives of children suffering from illness and hardship by integrating musicians year-round into their lives. Founded in 2007, their programming includes live interactive concerts, hospital bedside performances and a special Songs For Kids Records songwriting and recording program. By 2013, the massive popularity of their work — over 1,000 annual visits a year! — lead to the first ever Songs For Kids Tour, which reached over 5,000 hospitalized children and families in 239 children’s hospitals in 180+ cities. The journey lasted over 250 days and covered 32,000 miles, providing kids had the opportunity to sing, dance, laugh and smile in hospitals across every region in the United States.
Citymeals-on-Wheels ensures that no homebound, elderly New Yorker will ever go a day without food or human company. Last year alone, their family of contributors helped bring 2 million nutritious meals to more than 18,000 frail aged in every borough of New York City. They also fund community-based agencies that bring weekend, holiday and emergency meals to homebound elderly New Yorkers who can no longer shop or cook for themselves. In addition, their Mobile Food Pantry program delivers weekly bags of grocery staples to the most at-risk eldery and their Fresh Produce program enables them to supplement regular meal deliveries with fresh fruit and vegetables from local farmers.
A Place Called Home provides love, safety, enrichment, and opportunities to underserved children and teens in Los Angeles. Their after-school, weekend, and all-day summer programs and services include tutoring and homework support, as well as a full spectrum of instruction in the arts, athletics, dance and music. They also provide year-round support for college preparation, SAT tutoring, and college counseling and scholarships. Each year, their support guides dozens of first-generation college students — enabling their transition into productive, successful, and happy adults.
Nexleaf was founded in 2009 by two UCLA graduate alumni who wanted to pair low-cost sensors with our global network of cellphones paired in order to achieve social impact. Their systems include refrigerators that monitor themselves to ensure safe storage of vaccines, clean cookstoves that reduce air pollution in households and allow wireless transmission of pollution data, and data collection that helps track the key indicators of NGO intervention efforts, such as the volume of seabird calls during mating season. By transforming everyday objects into critical data collection hubs, Nexleaf can monitor and enhance the impact of their socially-minded initiatives from anywhere in the world.
Founded in 1972, Ocean Conservancy strives to be the world's foremost advocate for the oceans. From the Arctic to the Gulf of Mexico to the halls of Congress, they bring people together to protect our water, its wildlife, and the millions who earn their living from the ocean. Their many, far-reaching campaigns include the Trash Free Sea Alliance, which partners with major corporations and governments to eliminate ocean pollution, building sustainable fisheries with local fishermen, designating areas for marine conservation, and coordinating use of ocean resources through public policy, in order to sustainably support all the people who live, work, and play alongside our great oceans.
The National Coalition for Cancer Survivorship (NCCS) advocates for quality cancer care for all people touched by cancer. Since their founding in 1986, they have worked to advocate as the patient voice in national discussions related to quality cancer care — even convening with other cancer advocacy groups to found the Cancer Leadership Council, a patient-centered forum of national advocacy organizations addressing public policy issues on cancer. They also empower cancer survivors through their publications and programs, which provide crucial tools for self-advocacy and care.
Walkabout Foundation works closely with research centers all over the globe to find and fund a cure for paralysis, partnering with renowned organizations to pursue the most promising research leads. While scientists work toward a cure, Walkabout Foundation also seeks to provide humanitarian assistance to people with disabilities on the ground today by donating wheelchairs to people who can otherwise not afford one. Their special “RoughRider” wheelchair is exclusively designed for the rough and rugged terrain of the developing world, with all-terrain wheels, custom fitting, and parts made of locally-repairable bicycle tubing.
Friends of the Earth is an advocacy organization dedicated to protecting the environment, human communities, and healthy life on our planet. For more than 40 years, they have been the leader in aggressively confronting the root causes of climate change, in stopping wasteful government handouts to polluting industries, and in stemming damaging corporate exploitation that places profit above human and environmental wellbeing. Friends of the Earth also promotes clean and sustainable energy, fair solutions to the climate crisis, responsible use of technology, and protection of the earth’s natural treasures.
Libraries Without Borders actively promotes access to knowledge throughout the world. Currently, they have built libraries in 20 countries, transforming donated books and other resources into freely accessible learning materials for more than half a million people. They also facilitate important community-building functions — such as the conservation and promotion of local histories, management training, teacher training, and the creation of cultural projects for specific and disadvantaged groups such as visually impaired persons, prisoners and refugee populations.
Heritage Radio Network is committed to archiving, protecting, and advancing America's rich food culture through programs that give voice to the country's leading food professionals, farmers, policy experts, artists, and tastemakers. Broadcast from the interior of two re-purposed shipping containers dropped into the backyard of a legendary Brooklyn pizza place, the station is home to radio spots both illuminating ("Grain of Truth: The Real Case For and Against Wheat and Gluten") and mouth-watering ("Ice Cream & Food Writing"). Today, their broadcasts are heard in over 200 countries around the globe, by more than one million listeners.
Since 1982, the Land Trust Alliance has helped grow the land trust community from 300 isolated organizations to a network of nearly 1,700 groups working to save our country's special natural places — forests, parks, working farms and ranches, riverbanks, landscapes, and other habitats that are critical to the quality of our air, food, and water. By working to increase the pace of conversation efforts and advocating for better legislation to protect land over long periods of time, the Land Trust Alliance has helped landowners protect more land, more effectively, over more than three decades.
The National Center for Women & Information Technology (NCWIT) works to correct the imbalance of gender diversity in technology and computing. Their sweeping outreach initiatives include counselor services, peer-to-peer mentorship, and programs for national recognition of young women interested in computing. They also provide customized consultations to undergraduate programs looking to expand their computing-focused curriculums and fast-track initiatives that help train — and retain — women in technical careers.
Fresh Lifelines for Youth (FLY) is an award winning nonprofit dedicated to breaking the cycle of violence, crime and incarceration of teens. Through FLY’s unique and powerful combination of programs-legal education, leadership training, and one-on-one mentoring-youth get off probation, engaged in school, and back on track with their lives.
Founded in 1983, Cascade AIDS Project is the oldest and largest community-based provider of HIV services, housing, education and advocacy in Oregon and Southwest Washington. They help people put their lives back together; to secure housing, find essential medical care and deal with the countless issues that make the difference between giving up or getting up and going on. Among their many services are peer support services for mental health considerations, basic life skills workshops, free camp for children affected by HIV/AIDS, and a simple text reminder service for medications and health tips.
Every 60 seconds a child dies from malaria. In sub-Saharan Africa, families worry that their children will get bitten by a disease-carrying mosquito, but one $10 bed net can mean the difference between life and death. Nothing But Nets focuses on providing these insecticide-treated bed nets to families across the region — where the majority of all deaths and infections from malaria occur. Bed nets use a simple but effective prevention approach: eliminate contact with mosquitoes, eliminate malaria. Since 2006, they've delivered more than 7 million bed nets, effectively doubling the survival rate of millions of children.
Pencils of Promise brings life-changing education to children living in poverty around the world. Their approach is fully holistic — from constructing schools and training teachers all the way to educating students on proper sanitation practices, so they stay healthy and in school. Pencils of Promise also employs innovative technology to make learning affordable and widely accessible, utilizing e-readers to provide entire classrooms with regularly updated curriculums and smart phones to deliver interactive audio lessons. The results of their work have been tremendous, with scholarship students scoring three times higher on language literacy tests and graduating at twice the regional averages.
Hour Children’s mission is to help incarcerated and formerly incarcerated women and their children successfully rejoin the community, reunify with their families, and build healthy, independent and secure lives. To accomplish this, Hour Children provides compassionate and comprehensive services and encourages all to live and interact with dignity and respect.
Design Impact is a social innovation firm made up of designers, community development practitioners, social entrepreneurs, and educators who are working together to design a better world. Together, they incubate projects that transform communities — creating active learning experiences that are designed to help participants drive change in their own unique contexts. Their projects take place all over the world, from a fortified snack that fights malnutrition in India to a business accelerator that empowers small batch manufacturers and spurs economic development in Cincinnati.
Founded more than 25 years ago, Hour Children strives to end the cycle of intergenerational incarceration. Their mission is to help incarcerated and formerly incarcerated women and their children successfully rejoin the community, reunify with their families, and build healthy, independent and secure lives. To accomplish this, Hour Children provides compassionate and comprehensive services including one-on-one job skills training, supportive housing arrangements, mentorship programs, and a community food pantry.
Founded in 1992, Shadhika is devoted to addressing gender inequality and breaking the cycle of poverty in India by investing in the education, empowerment and economic self-sufficiency of girls. Shadhika accomplishes this by awarding grants to NGOs' who are working directly with at-risk girls and local communities, providing oversight and building the capacity of grantees through regular site visits to ensure accountability and to help them increase their impact, and acting in coalition with other funders and non-profits in India and globally to eliminate gender inequality and empower girls.
Artists For Humanity's (AFH) mission is to bridge economic, racial and social divisions by providing underserved youth with the keys to self-sufficiency through paid employment in art and design. They celebrate the talents and wonderful energy of young people by giving them hands-on experiences in creativity, business, teamwork, and self-governance. Participants learn the techniques and tools of professional artists and the business world while engaging in education, employment, artistic exploration, and entrepreneurial experience. This produces life-transforming change for youth and for their communities.
Founded in 1903, Fauna & Flora International is the world's first international conservation organization, working more more than on a century on innovative approaches that inspire others and make a lasting impact on global biodiversity. Their mission is to act to conserve threatened species and ecosystems worldwide, choosing solutions that are sustainable, are based on sound science and take account of human needs. Currently, Fauna & Flora International's work spans across the globe, with over 140 projects in over 40 countries.
The Land Stewardship Project (LSP) was founded in 1982 to foster an ethic of stewardship for farmland, to promote sustainable agriculture, and to develop sustainable communities. Made up of farmers as well as rural and urban residents, LSP works together to: secure a healthful food supply; preserve soil, water, and wildlife; support diversified, profitable family-sized farms; organize communities for positive change; hold corporations and governments accountable; and create a new sustainable vision for our food and agriculture systems
Brother's Brother Foundation (BBF) promotes international health and education through the efficient and effective distribution and provision of donated medical, educational, agricultural, and other resources. Since it began in 1958, BBF has helped people in over 140 countries, working through and in partnership with local agencies that want to help their own people. BBF has provided and facilitated the distribution of over $4 billion in goods and services, including approximately 100,000 tons of medical supplies, text books, seeds and food that have touched tens of millions with better health, education, nutrition, material security and hope.
Her Justice engages the vast talent and resources of New York City's law firms, bringing together committed lawyers and determined women to secure life-changing results. In their mission to provide legal representation to women with urgent safety and financial needs, Her Justice recruits volunteer attorneys from the City's law firms to stand side-by-side with women who cannot afford to pay for a lawyer, giving them a real chance to obtain legal protections that transform their lives.
For more than three decades, Futures Without Violence has worked to end violence against women and children around the world. Instrumental in developing the landmark Violence Against Women Act passed by Congress in 1994, Futures Without Violence has continued to break new ground by reaching new audiences including men and youth, promoting leadership within communities to ensure that violence prevention efforts become self-sustaining, and transforming the way health care providers, police, judges, employers and others address violence.
Youth On Their Own (YOTO) is a drop out prevention program that supports the high school graduation of homeless unaccompanied youth who are in 6th-12th grade. YOTO provides students with financial assistance, basic needs, and guidance as they work to obtain their high school diplomas. With community contributions and support, they have helped over 15,000 students stay in school and remain focused on the goal of graduation, paving the way to become self-sufficient, productive adults within their communities.
The Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance (DBSA) is the leading peer-directed national organization focusing on the two most prevalent mental health conditions, depression and bipolar disorder. For more than 27 years, they've worked to improve recognition, early detection and diagnosis of mood disorders, help people successfully manage their diseases, improve care, expand the ability of people to receive treatment, advance research, and increase acceptance and understanding of mood disorders. Through more than 700 support groups and nearly 300 chapters, they reach millions of people each year with in-person and online peer support, up to date information about depression and bipolar disorder, and empowering tools focused on an integrated approach to wellness. DBSA informs, empowers, supports, and inspires individuals to achieve the lives they want to lead.
Transportation Alternatives (TA) aims to promote bicycling, walking, and public transit in New York City. Since their founding in 1973, they've paved the way for remarkable changes in New York City’s transportation infrastructure: the growth of the bicycling commute, the launch of Citi Bike, parking-protected bike lanes, public plazas, Neighborhood Slow Zones, and much more. Today, with 100,000 active supporters and a committee of activists working locally in every borough, TA continues to work for the installation of infrastructure improvements that reduce speeding and traffic crashes, save lives and improve everyday transportation for all.
For more than 50 years, Project Concern International's has been committed to sustainable change in the health and self-sufficiency of people living in acute poverty worldwide. Working one-on-one with community leaders, on the ground, they build and implement sustainable solutions to root causes of poverty — empowering access to education, gender equality in leadership roles, access to health care and family planning services, disaster risk reduction, and much more. Today, their efforts reach thousands of people in 15 countries around the world.
Nuru International ends extreme poverty in remote, rural areas by equipping local leaders with the tools and knowledge to build self-sustaining, self-scaling impact programs. Their work begins by identifying capable, impassioned local leaders — then working alongside those individuals to co-create change in their communities. Some of their programs include agricultural training in Ethiopia, which provides farmers everything from initial funding to personalized mentorship, and educational outreach initiatives in Kenya, which offer weekly literacy sessions to primary school students in rural public primary schools.
Jazz St. Louis aims to advance the uniquely American art of jazz through live performance, education, and outreach. Currently, they present more than 300 jazz-related events per year, which include live shows, in-school performances, and community outreach concerts — with their education initiatives reaching more than 140,000 students on an annual basis. Jazz St. Louis also facilitates the Artist Residency Program, which brings professional jazz artists and educators to St. Louis for an entire week. During that time, the artists travel throughout the metro area, conducting master classes and clinics with small groups of middle and high school musicians, performing for large groups of elementary students, and presenting concerts in the community.
Everyone lives in a watershed! Watersheds provide our drinking water, habitat for wildlife, soil in which to grow our food, and the streams, rivers and lakes we use for fishing, boating and swimming. Founded in 1992, The Center for Watershed Protection takes a practical approach to sustaining this critically important habitat; offering collaborative leadership across disciplines and professions with a commitment to protect, restore and enhance our streams, rivers, lakes, wetlands and bays. By creating viable solutions and partnerships for responsible land and water management, they help ensure that every community has clean water and healthy natural resources to sustain diverse life.
The Urban Libraries Council (ULC), founded in 1971, is a membership association of leading public library systems in the U.S. and Canada. With the help of their members, ULC strategically advances the value that 21st century libraries provide communities in critical areas such as education, lifelong learning, workforce and economic development, public safety, health and wellness and environmental sustainability. Their innovative projects include The Edge, a leadership and management tool that helps librarians align their technologies with the needs of their communities, and Learning Labs, an initiative to digitally connect teens to mentors and peers.
The International Folk Art Alliance celebrates and preserves living folk art traditions — primarily through the Santa Fe International Folk Art Market. The world's largest gathering of its kind, the Market has hosted more than 700 master folk artists from 87 countries around the world, resulting in the economically viable sustenance of hundreds of folk art traditions. As it stands today, the Market has expanded into a year-round program that provides regular support to folk artists through business and marketing workshops, hands-on skill building, peer-to-peer learning, and other types of long-term support that empower more effective participation in the global marketplace.
The Ovarian Cancer National Alliance is a powerful voice for those touched by ovarian cancer. By connecting survivors, women at risk, caregivers and health providers with the information and resources they need, they ensure that ovarian cancer is a priority for lawmakers and agencies throughout the country. They also train top advocates to speak up in their communities, provide resources to the next generation of health providers to recognize the risk factors and symptoms of ovarian cancer, and host the largest national conference dedicated to informing and encouraging survivors to take action. With a robust online community connecting tens of thousands of women and men affected by the disease, The Ovarian Cancer National Alliance is able to positively effect tens of thousands of lives.
Home Instruction for Parents of Preschool Youngsters (HIPPY) is an evidenced-based program that works with families in the home to support parents in their critical role as their child's first and most important teacher. They provide parents with a set of carefully developed curriculum, books and materials designed to strengthen their children's cognitive skills, early literacy skills, social/emotional and physical development. By empowering parents to actively prepare their children for success in school, HIPPY strengthens entire communities — to date, they've served more than 15,000 families in almost 140 communities across the country.
Since 1985, CityKids has established and maintained cutting edge youth development programs, training tens of thousands of diverse young people by providing them with opportunities for personal growth, leadership, and artistic expression. Some of their projects include their Repertory Company, an intensive audition based performance program that combines training in performing arts disciplines with a unique leadership development model, and "Coalition," a weekly interactive dialogue where young people learn to think critically, listen to their peers, and articulate their ideas and ideals respectfully.
Practice Makes Perfect is a comprehensive summer education program with a proven “near-peer” model to support students from kindergarten through college matriculation. Their programs pair skills development for younger students with leadership development, career training and college prep for older students. Through a unique multi-relational approach, Practice Makes Perfect strategically matches academically struggling elementary and middle school students with older, higher achieving mentor peers from the same inner-city neighborhoods. Trained college interns and certified teachers supervise the “near-peer” relationship for a five-week, full-day academic experience.
Global Healing is an international nonprofit organization dedicated to improving health systems in resource-constrained parts of the world, from the Honduras and Haiti all the way to Vietnam. Their programs are tailored to the unique situation each group faces in order to generate sustainable outcomes that will endure long after active involvement — donating needed equipment, training, and essential educational resources where they'll have the most profound impact.
The Foundation for Foster Children strengthens communities by providing direct support to foster children and their families. Their services offer a full range of programs and resources to kids in need — from in-home tutoring and access to extracurricular activities for young children all the way to one-on-one mentorship for those transitioning into adulthood. In the last year alone, over 4,500 granted opportunities were awarded through one of these incredibly important programs, helping thousands of children gain independence, self esteem, and a sense of belonging.
Dining for Women is a global giving circle that funds grassroots programs working in developing countries to fight gender inequality. Dining for Women celebrates the power of the individual to see an injustice and act to change it; to see need and act to fill it. Dining for Women’s members are deeply involved in the programs we support and the problems we seek to address. Our education component is equally as important as our fundraising.
Harboring Hearts’s mission is to provide a full spectrum of care to patients in need of heart surgery. Working directly with hospitals, they provide financial assistance and other immediate support to pediatric and adult patients awaiting or undergoing heart transplants or critical cardio-thoracic surgical care — their Emergency Fund helps alleviate unanticipated financial burdens that patients and their families may experience when facing a lifesaving heart procedure and their Community Support programs organize therapeutic and recreational programs for patients and families in hospitals several times each year.
Reading Is Fundamental (RIF) is the largest children's literacy program in the United States. Their mission is to motivate young children to read by working with them, their parents, and community members to make reading a fun and beneficial part of everyday life — beginning with the provision of new books, free of charge, where they are needed most. Whether in schools, homeless shelters, or community centers—wherever you find children — RIF volunteers spend countless hours distributing books, staging reading motivation activities, and promoting the importance of literacy in their communities.
Fresh Artists amplifies the voice of children by promoting their access to the process of art making and by supporting the delivery of art supplies and innovative art programs to severely under-resourced public schools. They also install and display large-scale reproductions of children’s art in unexpected places, like the board rooms of Fortune 100 companies, on the sides of city buses, and in educational games carried in museum shops. Since their founding in 2008, Fresh Artists estimate that they have impacted the lives of more than 330,000 young people and delivered the value of more than a half million dollars in goods and art programs to art classrooms, touching children in almost every state.
Girls Write Now knows a lot about community-building, mentoring, empowering women, writing, and more. They put that knowledge into action through their programs — highly-structured, yet personalized; challenging, yet rewarding; and designed to provide creative and engaging opportunities for women of all ages. They take girls seriously for who they are, as well as who they will become. The relationships they foster tear down stereotypes, building a community of women writers of all ages who work to inspire and support one another with every pair session, every reading, and every workshop.
The Laundromat Project connects communities and artists in meaningful ways — building a corps of active artists who are inspired and equipped to work alongside folks in their neighborhood, creating art right where they live. Some examples of their innovative projects include a sequence of city-wide community events that will invite people to come together and create a “portrait” of their neighborhood, a compilation album of oral histories from Harlem-based community members, and a series of creative workshops that will take place at a Queens-based beauty salon.
Youth Radio is an award-winning media production company that trains diverse young people in digital media and technology. Partnering with industry professionals, students learn to produce marketable media for massive audiences while bringing youth perspectives to issues of public concern. Their mission is to launch young people on career and education pathways by engaging them in work-based learning opportunities, creative expression, professional development, and health and academic support services.
Since 1986, Physicians for Human Rights (PHR) has used medicine and science to document and call attention to mass atrocities and severe human rights violations. Employing their specialized expertise, they advocate for persecuted health workers, prevent torture, document mass atrocities, and hold those who violate human rights accountable. Some of their many accomplishments include exposing the use of chemical weapons against civilians in Iraq and carrying out historic exhumations of mass graves in Bosnia and Rwanda for international tribunals. During the past decade, these teams have also provided evidence for criminal investigations into torture and extrajudicial executions in numerous countries — including Colombia, Honduras, Libya, Mexico, Peru, and Sierra Leone — to ensure accountability for serious human rights violations and mass atrocities. PHR has also been at the forefront in developing standards for documentation, including playing the lead role in creating the Istanbul Protocol — the recognized international standard for documenting torture and ill-treatment.
Anchal Project addresses the exploitation of women around the world by using design thinking to create employment opportunities, services and products that support economic empowerment. Their primary goal is to provide commercial sex workers in India with careers in textile and design production and to build the infrastructure for creative, income-generating initiatives to run sustainably with local leadership. By offering skill-building resources and career alternatives, Anchal helps women rediscover their self-worth, potential and creativity in a financially rewarding way.
Citizens Committee has a simple mission: to help New Yorkers — especially those in low-income communities — come together to improve the quality of life in their neighborhoods. Whether that means organizing a farmer's market, painting a mural, building a composting program, or launching a dance camp, they help local people implement their own vision for their neighborhoods and schools. In addition to funding community initiatives, they listen to new ideas and offer active, hands-on help for implementation, through workshops, meeting with community leaders, and even weeding the occasional garden.
The Against Malaria Foundation saves lives through the simple provision of durable insecticidal nets that protect those at risk from malaria — a problem with an outsize effect on children and communities in developing regions of the world. Each net costs about $3, lasts for three to four years, and protects, on average, two people — meaning that each net counteracts a potential and significant health risk. The Against Malaria Foundation also strive to meet accountability and transparency standards. They track monthly malaria case rate data so the impact of the nets can be quantified, reported, and maintained.
The Future of Music Coalition works to ensure a diverse musical culture where artists flourish, are compensated fairly for their work, and where fans can find the music they want. Guided by a firm conviction that public policy has real impact on the lives of both musicians and fans, FMC advocates for a balanced approach to music in the digital age — one that reflects the interests of all. They document historic and emerging trends in the music industry and have become a trusted voice in the ongoing dialogue about the challenges and opportunities facing today’s musicians.
Since 1950, the mission of the National Book Foundation has been to celebrate the best of American literature — raising the cultural appreciation of great writing, advancing the careers of established and emerging writers and, most importantly, helping to engage and create an ever-growing audience of active readers. Their after school program, BookUp, is designed to inspire kids to become lifelong readers, introducing them to the written word through activities that are both interactive and fun. They also regularly feature up-and-coming writers, award literary luminaries, and help fund scholarships for innovative educational programs focused on reading.
Established in 1988, Rainforest Trust partners with local, in-country conservation organizations around the world to strategically purchase and protect lands vital for wildlife conservation. They specifically target rainforests and tropical habitats that are critical for preventing species extinctions and that are exceptionally rich in biological diversity. To date, they have saved nearly eight million acres of rainforests across 22 countries and are responsible for 86 new permanent protected areas.
Founded in 1967, The Fortune Society's mission is to support successful re-entry from prison and promote alternatives to incarceration. They accomplish this through a holistic, one-stop model of service provision — offering a continuum of care, informed and implemented by professionals with cultural backgrounds and life experiences similar to those of our clients. Some of these services include access to affordable, long-term housing, educational programs, family services, and comprehensive health services. Annually, they serve almost 5,000 men and women in the greater New York area.
Established in 1965, Intersection for the Arts is a pioneering community development organization that aims to instigate breakthrough change with art. Their programs help connect and support hundreds of artists — bringing them together through residencies, fellowships, commissions and fiscal sponsorship, in order to create work that transcends cultural and social boundaries. They're also a lead collaborator on the 5M Project, a 4-acre multi-phase, mixed-use development project located in downtown San Francisco. With The 5M Project, Intersection is helping to prototype the next generation of urban development that embraces diversity of thought, life experience, and culture as essential to positive economic and social change in our neighborhoods.
Orbis prevents and treats blindness in developing countries through hands-on training, public health education, improved access to quality eye care, advocacy and partnerships with local health care organizations. They work to strengthen local eye care institutions, train eye care professionals and advocate for supportive policies to increase awareness about the importance of quality eye health. On a yearly basis, they're able to enhance the skills of more than 22,000 eye care professionals, and provide treatment to more than 5 million blind and visually impaired people.
Assist International design and implement comprehensive humanitarian programs in the developing world, with a focus on five key areas: food, medical equipment, business training, home-building, and urgent relief for abandoned and orphaned children. Since their founding in 1990, they've completed over 500 projects across 61 countries — providing critically needed, affordable water filters to hospitals in developing regions, working to provide sustainable income opportunities on a local level, building new schools, and developing family-style orphanages that offer care and housing to children in need.
Every year, thousands of people are diagnosed with deadly blood cancers like leukemia and lymphoma. Their best hope for a cure is to find a bone marrow or cord blood transplant — yet 70% of patients do not have a matched donor in their family. Be The Match, which manages the largest and most diverse marrow registry in the world, connects these people with the life-saving transplants they need and then helps them throughout the process of recovery. They give one-on-one support to patients and their families, offer resources and guidance and, when necessary, provide funding.
Bailey House's mission is to help transform the lives of people with or at risk of HIV/AIDS and other chronic illnesses through housing, health services and community support. They offer affordable housing units based on their own, now nationally-recognized supportive housing models — meaning that it is safe, stable and always accessible to neighborhood amenities and services. They also provide a continuum of care that includes supportive case management, compassionate services, and connection to critically needed medical care and treatment. Their East Harlem Service center ensures that their quality care and services are available across the greater New York City community, so that no person living with HIV/AIDS has to go without essential care and support.
Founded in 1979, the American Refugee Committee International (ARC) is a humanitarian aid organization that works to help people take back control of their lives. ARC programs in Africa, Asia and Haiti serve nearly 2.5 million people each year, providing health care, clean water, sanitation, shelter, gender-based violence prevention services, microenterprise development, disease prevention services, education, legal services, counseling and repatriation assistance. ARC works with its constituents as partners. Of its 2,000 employees, 95 percent are hired locally.
Project Athena empowers women who've endured life altering medical setbacks to achieve acts of physical greatness, whether that be to climb Mount Kilimanjaro, cross the finish line of an Ironman Triathlon, run a local 5K, or just complete a group hike through a beautiful place like the Grand Canyon. To do this, they provide coaching, equipment, travel expenses, entry fees, and — most importantly — encouragement, inspiration, and a sense of community.
The National Alliance to End Homelessness is committed to preventing and ending homelessness. The Alliance analyzes policy and develops pragmatic, cost-effective policy solutions. They work collaboratively with the public, private, and nonprofit sectors to build state and local capacity, leading to stronger programs and policies that help homeless individuals and families make positive changes in their lives. They also provide data and research to policymakers and elected officials in order to inform policy debates and educate the public and opinion leaders nationwide.
The Center For Media Justice (CMJ) strives to address inequities in media access and coverage in diverse communities by collaborating with local social justice groups nationwide. Launched in 2008, CMJ is now a nationally recognized organizing hub — representing the media policy interests and building the cultural leadership of hundreds of social justice groups across the United States by providing free, digitally-available media kits and tools for activism. They also deliver workshops, webinars, curriculums, presentations and coaching services to help cultivate a new generation of effective media and cultural leaders.
The School Fund (TSF) empowers students by providing them with the means for education, linking students in the developing world directly with funders around the globe, forging meaningful friendships through the provision of financial assistance. Founded from a chance friendship between a traveling high school student and a local Tanzanian youth, The School Fund has since grown to fund almost 900 students in 15 countries around the world, from Haiti to the Philippines. Using online journals and profiles, donors stay connected with students throughout the course of their education — providing a life-changing experience to both.
Direct Relief provides essential medical supplies and equipment to people around the world who are recovering from disaster — working on the ground with healthcare professionals and locally-based organizations to tailors their efforts to the particular circumstances and needs of the communities they serve. Based on years of experience responding to large-scale emergencies worldwide, they have also developed programs that help address the needs of vulnerable communities before disaster strikes, by equipping them with mobile medical kits and other necessary equipment.
The World Wide Web Foundation (WWWF) seeks to establish the open web as a global public good and a basic right, ensuring that everyone can access and use it freely. Their numerous advocacy efforts include the Alliance for Affordable Internet, which promotes policy and regulatory reforms that will create the conditions for an efficient and competitive broadband market, the Web Index, which measures how well different countries around the world are harnessing the benefits of an open and universal web, and Web We Want, a growing global movement to defend the open web that is fueled by tens of thousands of people and more than 50 partner organizations across 30 countries.
V-Day is a nonprofit focused on ending violence against women. Through a series of globally networked grassroots initiatives, they aim to lay the groundwork for new educational, protective, and legislative endeavors that will awaken the world to the issues women face in their daily lives. Each year, their efforts are highlighted by their annual "One Billion Rising" campaign, which brings people together and into the streets in order to call for change. Only a few years old, the event now takes place in more than 200 countries around the world, and attracts hundreds of thousands of people.
Lauded by Conde Nast Magazine as "pioneers in philanthropic travel," Journeys Within Our Community (JWOC) works to connect travelers in Southeast Asia with opportunities to create meaningful change, while empowering local communities to better their lives. One great example: the JWOC University Scholarship program, which provides both critically needed educational funding to young people and empowers them with volunteer opportunities alongside locally-run, socially-beneficial projects in their field. Donors, who can fund a scholarship for $600, are then invited to meet the students they've supported and spend a day with them in school and at home.
Founded in 1985, International Rivers protects rivers and defends the rights of communities that depend on them. They oppose destructive dams and the development model they advance, and encourage better ways of meeting people's needs for water, energy and protection from damaging floods. They work with a global network of dam-affected people, environmentalists, human rights advocates and experts who are committed to fighting destructive river projects and promoting better alternatives. Focusing their work is in Latin America, Asia and Africa, they also foster grassroots organizations in more than 60 countries and promote the leadership of their regional partners by providing technical and strategic advice.
The National Domestic Workers Alliance (NDWA) is the nation’s leading voice for dignity and fairness for the millions of domestic workers in the United States, most of whom are women. Founded in 2007, NDWA has works to build lasting change with laws that require fair pay, conducts intensive, transformative leadership development and organizational capacity-building with leaders in their community of domestic workers, produces cutting edge research to help with advocacy efforts, and offers consistent support of grassroots organizations through a series of partnerships at both local and national levels.
Voice of Witness (VOW) is a non-profit dedicated to fostering a more nuanced, empathy-based understanding of contemporary human rights crises. They accomplish this by amplifying the voices of men and women most closely affected by injustice in and by providing both training and resource support to educators and invested communities. To date, the VOW book series features thirteen publications — each dedicated to the voices and stories of those affected by a particular human rights issue, from the criminal justice system to the experiences of men and women living under oppressive regimes in Burma, Zimbabwe and Colombia. Meanwhile, the VOW Education Program offers year-round site visits and workshops for schools and community organizations, a summer intensive oral history training, and a digitally available, common core aligned curriculum.
In today’s global society, deadly virus outbreaks like the bird flu can spread rapidly, and the impact of drought and other severe weather conditions can be felt on the other side of the world. Scientists in developing countries are facing these issues head on in their communities, but frequently lack the equipment, advanced training and resources to make important gains against these issues that impact everyone. That’s where Seeding Labs comes in. They empower talented scientists in developing countries to conduct life-changing research by providing them with lab equipment, training and the opportunity to collaborate with other experts in their field – and use these vital resources to achieve great things.
The Autism Society, the nation’s leading grassroots autism organization, exists to improve the lives of all affected by autism. They do this by increasing public awareness about the day-to-day issues faced by people on the spectrum, advocating for appropriate services for individuals across the lifespan, and consistently providing the latest information regarding treatment, education, research and advocacy. Through its strong national network of affiliates, the Autism Society has also spearheaded numerous pieces of state and local legislation, including the 2006 Combating Autism Act, the first federal autism-specific law.
The Disability Rights Fund (DRF) supports the advancement of human rights for disabled persons in the developing world, in accordance with the recently approved UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. Building on the momentum of this landmark treaty, the DRF offers grants and resource support to disabled persons organizations — enabling them to take the lead in advocating for important issues like equal access, equality of employment opportunity, respect for inherent dignity, and more. Since its inception in 2008, the DRF has granted more than $13 million, across 28 countries, to the rights advancement of disabled persons in the developing world.
Public Allies develops new leadership to strengthen communities, nonprofits and civic participation. Their unique leadership development approach works with young adults from diverse and underrepresented backgrounds for careers in public life (nonprofits, government, and civil society), and to practice values that invigorate public life: collaboration, diversity and inclusion, asset-based change, continuous learning, and integrity. Since 1992, about 6,000 Allies have completed the program with more than 80% continuing careers in nonprofit and public service.
Landesa champions the power of land ownership and secure land rights for farming families and communities as the keys to a safer and more prosperous future. For the last four decades, they've assisted more than 109 million families in 40 countries to obtain secure land rights — partnering with developing country governments to design and implement laws, policies and programs concerning land that provide opportunity, further economic growth and promote social justice. Broadly distributed land rights provide structural systemic change that is enduring and multi-generational, with the potential to break the cycle of poverty for families, villages, and entire countries.
The Wetlands Initiative is a leader in the growing national movement to restore wetlands as part of the solution to environmental problems like poor water quality, escalating flood damages, and vanishing wildlife. To date, their efforts in the Midwest have brought thousands of acres of wetland back to life — providing homes for hundreds of species of native birds and plants, in addition to creating recreational areas of education and scientific importance for the public. They also advocate, develop, and test innovative strategies to jumpstart restoration on a grand scale, building a blueprint for the ongoing and sustainable restoration of valuable environmental territories all across the country.
Founded in 1880, The League of American Bicyclists represents bicyclists in the movement to create safer roads, stronger communities, and a bicycle-friendly America. Their advocacy efforts span the spectrum, from lobbying Congress for funding to giving local advocates the tools to win campaigns for bike-friendly policies in their towns. They've also worked to build and implement nation-wide bicycle education programs, designing them to work with experience levels ranging from brand new all the way to regular bicyclists who just want to refine their skills and teach others.
Established in 2000, The Global Alliance for TB Drug Development (TB Alliance) works to find and develop improved tuberculosis treatments — bringing hope and health to millions of people. Today, the organization manages the largest portfolio of new tuberculosis drug candidates ever assembled and lead the global effort to transform tuberculosis therapy. To ensure medication and proper treatment reach the hands of those who need it most urgently, the TB Alliance and its partners are also working with global, regional, and national stakeholders to facilitate regulatory approval, adoption by tuberculosis programs, and the widespread availability of new drug regimens.
Center for Democracy and Technology (CDT)'s is a champion of global online civil liberties and human rights, driving policy outcomes that keep the Internet open, innovative, and free. For the last twenty years, they have supported the laws, corporate policies, and technology tools that protect the privacy of internet users — and remain committed to finding innovative, practical and balanced solutions to the tough policy challenges facing this rapidly evolving medium.
WaterAid transforms lives by improving access to safe water, hygiene and sanitation in the world's poorest communities — helping people to plan, build and manage water supplies and toilets using simple, low-cost technologies. Working in partnership with local organizations, WaterAid also pursues maximum health benefits by advocating for improvements in overall hygiene. They host public awareness campaigns, enable household discussions, host demonstrations, and produce educational radio programs, picture books, games, posters, and videos. Last year alone, their efforts helped provide more than two million people with safe water and sanitation.
The National Down Syndrome Society (NDSS) is a national advocate for the value, acceptance and inclusion of people with Down syndrome. Founded in 1979, their activities include shaping and advocating for improved public policy, increased public resources and services for people with Down syndrome, working in partnership with our affiliates and other support organizations, improving educational opportunities for individuals with Down syndrome, advancing basic, clinical and applied research, and implementing a national public awareness strategy.
buildOn mobilizes students in challenging urban areas to use intensive local service as a means for community transformation — both in their own backyards and all around the world. Across the United States, their innovative learning programs connect youth directly to those most in need in their neighborhoods, empowering them as volunteers in local soup kitchens, elementary schools, and senior citizen homes, as well as encouraging them to create public art, plant urban gardens, and perform other acts of public beautification. buildOn also partners these same students with developing countries in Africa, Asia, and Central America to build schools in villages that have historically had no adequate educational structures.
Health Leads strives to integrate basic resource needs into standard healthcare practices. Working closely with hospitals and doctors, they enable healthcare providers to "prescribe" things like food and heat just as they would medication — thus successfully addressing the root causes of many healthcare needs. Once a patient receives a prescription, they're connected with a Health Leads Advocate for step-by-step assistance connecting to relevant community services. They then receive regular check-ins by phone, email, or during clinic visits, to ensure that they're getting the coverage they need to stay healthy and thrive.
9to5 is dedicated to putting working women's issues on the public agenda. Founded in 1973 by a group of female co-workers campaigning for fair pay and equal treatment, the organization has since grown into one of America's largest, most respected national membership organizations of working women. They've worked for and won major national policies, including the the Family Medical Leave Act and the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act. They advocate for paid sick days, equal pay, fair policies around maternity leave, and a strong safety net — all in an effort to lift up the voices of women in low-wage jobs, build their leadership and empower them to bring about real change.
Project Healthy Children supports the design and implementation of food fortification programs throughout impoverished regions of Africa and the Honduras. Working closely with local governments, private industries, and partner agencies they conduct region-wide surveys of hunger-afflicted areas, thoroughly assessing food consumption, purchase, and common storage habits. From there, micronutrient deficiencies are identified and recommendations are made — like which foods should be fortified, with which micronutrients, and at what quantities. The result is wide-scale implementation of efficient, life-saving food fortification programs with a measurable impact on the overall well-being of communities.
Founded in 1996, The National Women's History Museum is dedicated to preserving and celebrating the diverse historic contributions of women in America. Currently an online institution only, they strive to raise awareness about women's experiences and achievements through dynamic online exhibits, free educational materials, scholarship, and extensive research. They're also actively pursuing the construction of a world class museum in Washington D.C. — the first museum in any nation's capital to be committed to the full scope of the history of its women.
Project for Public Spaces (PPS) is dedicated to helping people create and sustain public spaces that build stronger communities. Since its founding in 1975, PPS has worked in more than 2,000 communities across 26 countries — helping citizens transform their public spaces into vital places that highlight local assets, spur community rejuvenation, and serve common needs. Some of their projects include revitalizing outdoor marketplaces in Detroit and Boston, greening areas of Houston with public parks, and designing a pedestrian-friendly waterfront in Hong Kong.
The Global Energy Network (GENI) links renewable energy sources around the world in order to create a sustainable network of accessible, affordable power. They also conduct extensive research into the development and transmission of integrated, renewable resources as a viable option for meeting our global energy needs — showing that changes to our energy distribution structures can help mollify conflicts, decrease pollution, reduce hunger and poverty in developing nations, and enable access to better communications, health care, and safe water.
Today, more than two billion people lack access to the most basic things, such as clean drinking water, adequate sanitation, reliable passage to local markets and more. Engineers Without Borders USA (EWB-USA) is engineering change in 39 countries around the world to transform this reality — one well at a time, one bridge at a time, and one community at a time. Each of their locally-driven development programs originates with a community self-identifying its needs and requesting support. From there, each project is carried out sustainably, collaboratively, and with a minimum five-year commitment. The results? Children can cross sturdy bridges to attend school, local clinics have consistent supplies of electricity, and families have regular access to safe drinking water.
It is estimated that more than 15 million children don’t have the resources they need to succeed in school and that teachers spend more than $1 billion a year stocking their own classrooms due to a lack of funding in schools. Adopt A Classroom solves this problem by making it easy for donors to provide funding and support to classrooms throughout America. Teachers register their classrooms and needs online; donors discover classrooms through simple search tools, and make targeted contributions. Since their founding in 1998, they've raised over $21 million for essential classroom resources — touching the lives of millions of children.
Deborah’s Place is Chicago’s largest provider of supportive housing exclusively for women. Recognized as an innovative leader among homeless service providers locally and nationally, they offer a complete continuum of housing options, all linked with vital supportive services that enable women to find stable housing and sustainable incomes among a community of peers. Their work includes psychiatric consultation, public advocacy, assistance in obtaining housing, healthcare and income, as well as more holistic services like art therapy and individual mentorship.
HOPE's mission is to empower individuals living in poverty to achieve economic self-sufficiency. Using an evidence-based and employer-driven approach to the working world, HOPE provides their students everything from on-the-job training to career advancement coaching and tax preparation assistance. The impact of their ongoing assistance is huge. 73% of graduates go onto find — and stay — in steady jobs, dramatically increasing the financial and social wellbeing of their families and communities.
Food & Water Watch advocates for common sense policies that will result in healthy, safe food and access to safe and affordable drinking water — all across the world. Their work promotes practices and policies that will result in sustainable and secure food systems that provide healthy food for consumers and an economically viable living for family farmers and rural communities. They also advocate for public control of water resources and services, strong conservation measures and tough regulation of toxic emissions.
Founded in 1992, Equality Now is an organization that advocates for the human rights of women and girls around the world by raising international visibility of individual cases of abuse, mobilizing public support through our global membership, and wielding strategic political pressure to ensure that governments enact or enforce laws and policies that uphold the rights of women and girls. Combining grassroots activism with international, regional and national legal advocacy, they envision a world in which women have full enjoyment of equal rights under the law.
PENCIL forges partnerships between business volunteers and schools that develop stronger school leaders, increase college and career readiness, and engage families in their children’s learning. Their PENCIL Fellows Program provides promising public high school students with paid summer internships at leading businesses throughout the city, introducing them to essential habits like planning and goal-setting, as well as skills like resume-writing and interviewing. In addition, their PENCIL's Partnership Program builds and supports customized, long-term relationships between business volunteers and public school principals to inspire innovation and continually improve student achievement.
NetHope's mission has a clear focus: to be a catalyst for collaboration among international humanitarian organizations. By leveraging their members as a highly collaborative team, they're able to help solve common technology problems, foster strong relationships with private industry, and educate the wider community of humanitarian organizations worldwide. The result? More organizations using the best information, practices, and communication technology when serving people in the developing world.
The Center for Creative Land Recycling (CCLR or "see clear") enables communities to develop sustainably and equitably through land recycling — restoring underutilized, blighted sites to productive use, all over the world. Some examples of their work include transforming one of Israel's largest landfills into a recycling park, restoring an industrial port site in Toronto as a thriving commercial waterfront, and turning an abandoned steel mill in Atlanta into a walkable district of shopping, offices, and homes,
The Children's Organ Transplant Association (COTA) helps children and young adults who need a life-saving transplant by providing fundraising assistance and family support. COTA is the premier organization providing fundraising assistance to families facing a life-saving transplant. Since 1986, transplant families nationwide — representing every ethnic, economic, religious and social background — have worked with COTA.
Founded in 2002, Wildlife Conservation Network (WCN) is dedicated to protecting endangered species and preserving their natural habitats. They partner with independent, community-based conservationists around the world and provide them with the capital and tools they need to develop solutions for human-wildlife coexistence. WCN's conservationists also actively engage local people as effective stewards of their environment and work in a culturally-respectful manner to ensure that conservation skills and values will be passed on to future generations.
Groundswell International enables thousands of rural communities and organizations in Africa, Asia, and Latin America to sustainably improve their lives. Working at the community level, they help locally-based farmers to sustainably grow more food and improve their lives. They also help them to spread successful approaches to farming and to build alliances with urban communities, wider social movements, and between countries in the global South and North. While they focus on strengthening local food and agro-ecological farming systems, they also support people to address other priority concerns – such as community health, equity between women and men, savings and credit cooperatives, income generation and resilience to disasters.
Education Through Music (ETM) partners with inner-city schools to provide music as a core subject for all children, and utilizes music education as a catalyst to improve academic achievement, motivation for school, and self-confidence. They ensure high-quality instruction by hiring qualified music teachers, providing ongoing training, and performing regular program assessments. They also encourage classroom teachers and music teachers to collaborate so that music can reinforce learning and development in all areas — and they help schools embrace music as a core subject by involving all members of the school community.
In the 1990s, half of the world’s illiterate children were in India. Pratham USA was founded in order to change that. First started in Mumbai, their direct programs — including preschool education, remedial learning programs, and vocational classes— now reach hundreds of thousands of children, every year, in nearly every state in India. In addition to providing hands-on educational services, they have commissioned and implemented an "Annual Status of Education Report," which provides the data local government officials need in order to make informed decisions about education.
Communities In Schools (CIS) is America’s leading dropout prevention organization, empowering high school students with the community support, resources, and tools that they need in order to graduate. Depending on the school, these services vary from one-on-one mentoring and after-school programs to health care and career development workshops. Today, after nearly four decades of work, the CIS network is comprised of more than 4,000 passionate professionals working in close to 200 local affiliate nonprofits in 26 states and the District of Columbia, as well as 42,000 community volunteers, serving nearly 1.5 million young people in more than 2,400 schools around the nation.
Reading Partners is a national education nonprofit dedicated to improving students’ reading skills by recruiting and training community volunteers to work one-on-one with students for 45 minutes twice a week, following a structured, research-based curriculum. The result is transformative — with students gaining confidence, learning faster, and taking the lead in advancement of their own education. To date, Reading Partners has successfully reached more than 12,000 school children, helping them become strong, confident readers with a passion for learning.
School on Wheels works to enhance educational opportunities for homeless children from kindergarten through twelfth grade. To accomplish this goal, hundreds of volunteers provide one-on-one weekly tutoring services — reaching over 3,000 children in the last year alone. They also provide scholarships, basic school supplies, and after school programs via their community learning center, located in Los Angeles' Skid Row. Their various programs serve as a consistent support system to homeless students, offering them support, critically needed resources, and the knowledge that they are cared about.
Semilla Nueva helps rural Guatemalan farmers find a path to prosperity, health, and sustainability through farmer to farmer education. Working with smallholder farmers to experiment with sustainable farming techniques on small portions of land, they carefully track what changes work to efficiently increase crop yields, generate more income, and simultaneously decrease agriculture's negative effects. Then, they host farmer-led conferences in which participating farmers share their experiences with their neighbors, allowing the movement to organically reproduce on its own.
Evidence Action scales proven, rigorously evaluated development solutions to benefit millions of people around the world. Their two flagship programs are the Deworm the World Initiative — a school-based deworming program that builds on existing infrastructure to deliver effective, low cost treatment in pill form — and Dispensers for Safe Water, a low-cost, community-implemented approach to increase rates of household chlorination. Together, these efforts serve a combined 40 million people across Southeast Asia and Eastern and Southern Africa.
The National Coalition Against Censorship (NCAC) is dedicated to protecting the right to free speech and access to information by assisting individuals and organizations resisting efforts to censor books, art, theatre, and film — while educating the public, press, policy makers, researchers, students, and others about the nature and extent of censorship. They also publishing wide range of print and online educational resources about censorship and the first amendment free speech.
The Sankara Eye Foundation aims to eradicate curable blindness in India by the year 2020. Working with communities on the ground, this nonprofit helps build operationally self-sufficient speciality hospitals where thousands of people have access to eye care that is high quality, highly specialized, and completely free. Not only do they provide critically needed medical treatments to patients already effected by disease — they conduct extensive outreach and awareness campaigns, empowering community members to take preventative measures to protect the long-term health of their vision.
The Public Citizen Foundation serves as the people’s voice in America's capital. For the last four decades, they've served as strong public advocates for openness and democratic accountability in government, for clean, safe and sustainable energy sources, for social and economic justice in trade policies, for strong health, safety and environmental protections, and for effective and affordable health care.
The Adventure Project creates economic opportunities that lift people out of poverty while transforming communities with life-saving services in four areas: health, hunger, environment, and water. Some examples of their work include providing crop-boosting irrigation pumps to rural farmers, financing clean-burning cook stoves for families, and training local leaders as healthcare agents. These small changes can have a huge impact — effectively empowering people with the skills and resources they need to move out of poverty, for good.
Results for Development Institute (R4D) finds solutions to tough development challenges that prevent people in low-income communities from realizing their full potential. Focusing on four key areas — education, governance, healthcare, and economic opportunity — they search for the best ways to connect communities with the training and resources they need in order to thrive. Their extensive research projects range from assessing the impact of educational reforms to providing technical support to citizen-lead institutions. They also worked closely with other organizations to analyze and develop improved methods for healthcare delivery and medical treatments.
Rural community members often live in a walking world — but when the rivers swell, walks to school, work or the doctor can become life threatening without a bridge to cross. Having identified this critical obstacle to access, Bridges to Prosperity partners with local governments, nonprofits, and leaders to help remotely located villages build footbridges over impassable rivers. From Guatemala to the far reaches of Nepal, their work empowers entire communities by providing them safe, reliable access to healthcare, education, and economic opportunities.
Fair Food Network pioneers solutions to food security that support farmers, strengthen local economies, and increase access to healthy food — especially in underserved communities. They do this by engaging with food-related issues on all levels. Nationally, they advocate for smart decisions on food-related policy issues. Locally, they incentivize families to purchase healthier foods, empower local entrepreneurs to bring grocery stores back to neighborhoods lacking in nutritious food choices, and help farmers connect directly to consumers.
In YouthBuild programs, low-income young people ages 16 to 24 work full-time for 6 to 24 months toward their GEDs or high school diplomas while learning job skills by building affordable housing for homeless and low-income people in their communities. Emphasis is placed on leadership development, community service, and the creation of a positive mini-community of adults and youth committed to each other’s success. Today, there are over 250 YouthBuild programs in 45 states, engaging approximately 10,000 young adults per year.
The mission of the Adaptive Design Association (ADA) is create customized adaptations to common furniture so that children with disabilities have comfortable access. They do this by building child-specific adaptations in a model workshop in New York City; developing and testing curricula for a wide range of learners (from classmates to therapists to engineers); and creating guidelines, techniques, and devices that can be replicated in Adaptive Design Centers all over the world. Their numerous projects include a handmade rocking chair, a slip-on portable cafeteria bench, and a motorized scooter!
The American Forest Foundation works on-the-ground with families, teachers, and elected officials to both protect forests and increase public awareness of their fundamental importance. Not only do they develop and advance policies and programs that support conservation, environmental education, and sustainable forests — they also enhance the ecological, social, and economic viability of family forestland ownership, and increase the number of family forest owners who sustainably manage natural resources.
Dance/USA believes that dance is essential for a healthy society, demonstrating the infinite possibilities for human expression and potential, and facilitating communication within and across cultures. In order to advance this vision, they strive to make dance available to everyone — through professional dance mentorship programs, national forums, public advocacy, and extensive research into topics like audience engagement. By providing national leadership and services, Dance/USA enhances the infrastructure for dance creation, education, and (most importantly!) public enjoyment.
The North Cascades Institute aims to conserve and restore America's Pacific Northwest through public education. Since 1986, they've helped connect people with nature through science art, literature, and the hands-on study of the region's natural and cultural history. Their myriad programs include summer youth retreats, guided boat tours, a graduate program, and a residential environmental education program — the curriculum of which includes lakeside classrooms and ample hiking.
The Lustgarten Foundation for Pancreatic Cancer Research advances the scientific and medical research related to the diagnosis, treatment, cure and prevention of pancreatic cancer. Not only do they provide increased funding and support of research into the biological mechanisms and clinical strategies related to the diseases treatment, they also strive to facilitate dialogue among members of the medical and scientific communities about research efforts, heighten public awareness, and provide informational support to patients and their families.
Since the early 1980s, RESULTS Educational Fund has been helping to implement critical, effective solutions to poverty by combining the voices of their grassroots activists with strategic efforts to leverage funding for programs and improved policies that give low-income people health care, access to education, and other opportunities to thrive. Their efforts have included advocating for comprehensive child development services for disadvantaged pre-school children and families, funding for global education initiatives, and support for programs that provide preventive care for diseases that have an outsized effect on impoverished populations.
The Tahirih Justice Center works to protect immigrant women and girls from gender-based violence through legal services, advocacy, and public education programs. To maximize the number of women and girls they can serve and to develop powerful public policy campaigns, Tahirih leverages an extensive amount of donated professional services — they have formalized a Pro Bono Attorney Network that includes over 1,000 attorneys from top law firms who represent cases free of charge, as well as a Pro Bono Medical Network to address the urgent medical needs of their clients and a Public Policy Advisors to inform their efforts. Their model for service delivery protects the lives of the women and girls we serve, and despite the complex cases they litigate, they have maintained a 99% success rate.
Innovations for Poverty Action researches and promotes ways to end global poverty. Striving to bridge the gap between academic research and development policy in practice, this organization works in over 50 countries around the world — developing close relationships with the communities they serve, and then communicating their findings to the policymakers and investors that can help make a difference on the ground. The impact of their research is huge. A recent example? Providing accurate data to aid workers in order to help them effectively fight Ebola.
Thanks USA provides college, technical and vocational school need-based scholarships for the children and spouses of US military personnel. Started in 2005 as a modest local fundraiser by two sisters, aged ten and eight, Thanks USA has quickly blossomed into a life-changing organization — providing thousands of scholarships, totaling millions of dollars, to people all across America.
The mission of the Edible Schoolyard Project (ESP) is to build and share a national edible education curriculum for students from pre-kindergarten all the way through high school. Founded by famed chef Alice Waters, ESP has grown from a single acre of land in a local Berkeley schoolyard to a cross-country, interactive educational program that inspires kids to plan, grow, cultivate, and cook their very own food. Not only do they learn how to make a delicious meal today — they're taught how to make healthy food choices for themselves and their families, long into the future.
The Equal Justice Initiative (EJI) provides legal representation to indigent defendants and prisoners who have been denied fair and just treatment in the legal system. They litigate on behalf of juvenile offenders, people wrongly convicted or charged with violent crimes, poor people denied effective representation, and others whose trials are marked by racial bias or prosecutorial misconduct. EJI also prepares reports, newsletters, and manuals to assist advocates and policymakers in the critically important work of reforming the administration of criminal justice.
Girls Inc. provides more than 138,000 girls across the U.S. and Canada with the life-changing resources and support they need to thrive. Not only do they connect girls with professional mentors and like-minded peers in supportive, women-only environments — they also offer scholarships, fund research into the unique needs of girls, and work with policymakers to advocate on key legislation. Additionally, their innovative Girls Inc. programs offer education on key life skills, like violence prevention, economic literacy, and basic adolescent health care.
Children's Health Fund is committed to providing health care to America's most medically underserved children. Through the development and support of innovative, comprehensive primary care programs — like their pioneering mobile health clinics — they are able to significantly reduce the impact of public health crises on vulnerable children. They also strive to educate entire communities on healthier living practices through the provision of free, bilingual educational materials.
Reach Out and Read is an organization of medical providers who promote early literacy and school readiness in pediatric exam rooms nationwide. Building on the unique relationship between parents and medical providers, this nonprofit strives to develop critical early reading skills in children by incorporating early literacy into pediatric practice and equipping parents with the tools and knowledge they need in order to ensure that their children are prepared to learn when they start school.
In America, there are an estimated 500,000 to 1.6 million homeless youth each year. Of these young people, up to 40% identify as gay or transgender. The True Colors Fund, co-founded by Cyndi Lauper, seeks to bring an end to this epidemic — meeting with young people, community leaders, and government officials in order to raise awareness of the disproportionate effect of homelessness on LGBT youth. They also partner with community groups in order to offer LGBT-focused camp programs, educational services, and advocacy resources.
Founded in 1982, City Harvest is the world’s first food rescue organization. They collect millions of pounds of excess food from restaurants, grocers, bakeries, manufacturers, and farms, and deliver it free of charge to community food programs across the city — providing nutritious meals to more than 1.4 million New Yorkers. They also take a long-term approach to fighting hunger by partnering with residents, local organizations and businesses to increase the availability of affordable fruits and vegetables in low-income communities and provide the nutrition education and resources to maintain a wholesome, food-secure diet.
In the spring of 1991, a handful of artists got together with homeless kids to make art in New York City. Almost twenty years later, that single creative project has transformed into a nationally-recognized, multiple-award-winning organization — one that provides countless opportunities for the city's marginalized youth to make and experience art. Just a few examples of their work: daily creative workshops, artists-in-residency programs, thoughtful mentorship from locally-based volunteers, and outreach programs targeted at youth with open court cases.
The Appalachian Trail Conservancy (ATC) upholds the highest standards for the protection and management of the Appalachian Trail to ensure that it can be shared and enjoyed well into the future. Due to the trail’s historic legacy of volunteerism, ATC works cooperatively with volunteer Appalachian Trail clubs and agencies to develop meaningful trail policies, share expertise on trail design and construction, and protect the landscapes and natural and cultural resources that represent the unique, inspiring, and oftentimes life changing, experience of the Appalachian Trail.
Drugs for Neglected Diseases Initiative (DNDi) works to research and develop new treatments for life-threatening diseases in the developing world, such as malaria, sleeping sickness, and Chagas disease. Not only do they fund critically-needed cures — they strongly prioritize the day-to-day needs of the patients they serve. One example? Knowing that the majority of patients suffering from sleeping sickness lived far from traditional hospitals and couldn't leave their jobs for long enough to receive care, they developed a more affordable — and highly mobile! — treatment in pill form.
From New Orleans to the East Coast, the St. Bernard Project (SBP) serves disaster-impacted homeowners, ensuring that they have the resources they need to both prepare and recover. To date, they have rebuilt over 800 homes, but their efforts extend far beyond the immediate impact of a natural disaster. They also work with vulnerable communities to understand and mitigate known risks, overcome common barriers to recovery, and to make both affordable housing and living wage jobs available on a long term basis.
The mission of Walking Mountains Science Center is to inspire environmental stewardship through natural science education. Located in the mountains of Colorado, this nonprofit offers hands-on learning through a series of innovative school programs and youth science camps, as well as graduate fellowships, seminars on how to "green" your business, and regular educational film screenings. Their hope is to inspire people of all ages to act as stewards for our natural world.
Twenty years ago, Books Through Bars unknowingly began when a small Philadelphia-based press obliged a written request to send some free books to an incarcerated person at a nearby prison. The initial exchange blossomed into a full-blown trade, with dozens of letters pouring in each week, and the press regularly setting aside excess stock in order to fulfill every request possible. Today, Books Through Bars is a thriving, all-volunteer organization — shipping thousands of packages to incarcerated people all over the northeastern United States, aiding the emergence of other prison book programs, and facilitating an ongoing public dialogue around criminal justice issues.
Twenty five years ago, The Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation (EGPAF) was founded at a kitchen table by three moms who were determined to end HIV and AIDS in children. Today, they operate in more than 7,000 sites across 15 countries — funding research, acting as public advocates, and supporting expanded access to both preventative resources and HIV care and treatment services in regions of the world most deeply effected by the disease. Working to create lasting changes at a local level, EGPAF aims to bring the number of children and families suffering from HIV and AIDS down to zero.
The Community Partnership for Arts and Culture (CPAC) serves and supports creative professionals and community leaders in the greater Cleveland area. Their myriad programs strive to promote diversity in the arts, build supportive communities around creative projects, and publicly advocate for arts funding. They also offer yearly fellowships, free mentorship to burgeoning artists, and a series of free, online tools to help connect creatives and foster collaboration. Overall, CPAC's ongoing commitment to the arts and culture sector ensures the vitality and development of an entire community.
Women for Women International supports women in countries affected by war and conflict — helping them transition from crisis and poverty to a sustainable livelihood by providing essential support, resources, and skills-training. Not only does Women for Women provide basic vocational training, they empower women to manage their health and education, and to form support networks with their peers. The result? Stronger women, stronger families, and stronger communities.
As it stands today, roughly 270 million people in Africa still lack access to essential products like anti-malaria treatments, clean-burning cook stoves, fortified foods, and solar lamps. Living Goods empowers local entrepreneurs to source and deliver these vital items — often selling them door-to-door, while simultaneously educating consumers on critical health issues like how to properly use water filters. By empowering both local business people and consumers with low-cost, high-impact health commodities, Living Goods is helping to create productive, sustainable communities.
Heart to Heart International strives to improve our global health by connecting people with the care they need. Not only do their teams provide relief during times of health-related crisis — they work hand-in-hand with communities to build sustainable, long term access to health care. One example? Their commitment to post-earthquake Haiti has seen the ongoing distribution of critically-needed medicines, the construction of 14 health clinics, and the implementation of an innovative new project that will closely survey families living in remote areas, in order to better connect them with essential health services.
The Air Warrior Courage Foundation (AWCF) is a scuba training and open water certification program specifically tailored to meet the needs of wounded war veterans with amputations and burns. Not only does the certification provide crucial psychological relief to these men and women, it also puts them in close touch with a broad-based community of mentors and supportive peers.
The Computers For Youth Foundation (CFY) helps students, teachers, and parents use digital learning to improve educational outcomes. Their work starts in the classroom — but extends across entire classrooms and communities. Not only does CFY provide sample digital curriculums, but they support teachers in implementation, offer educational workshops to parents, and provide refurbished computers, pre-loaded with educational software, to families for free. The results? Increased support for learning at home, which provides a critical boost to both student confidence and classroom performance.
National Education For Assistance Dog Services (NEAD) provides trained canines to assist people with physical disabilities. Their specialized programs include classroom assistance dogs, who provide warmth and bonding opportunities to kids, "Canines For Combat Veterans," and specially trained hearing assistance dogs that alert their humans to sound sources. Since 1976, they've trained and provided over 1,500 canines — radically transforming the lives of thousands of people.
Room To Read partners with communities across Asia and Africa to promote literacy and gender equality in education. Their projects include everything from establishing local language libraries for children and funding long-term scholarships for girls to collaborating with neighborhood writers and illustrators to publish high-quality, local language children's book. Room To Read also funds the rebuilding of local schools and libraries, resulting in an impactful program with life-changing results — to date, they've established more than 9,000 libraries, published hundreds of books, and benefitted over 8 million children.
The Archaeological Conservancy is the only national, nonprofit organization that identifies, acquires, and preserves the most significant archaeological sites in the United States. Since its beginning in 1980, they have preserved more than 465 sites across the nation, ranging in age from the earliest habitation sites in North America to a 19th-century frontier army post. By building a national system of archaeological preserves, the Conservancy hopes to ensure the survival of our irreplaceable cultural heritage.
Where some might see poverty, blight, or the aftermath of disaster, Architecture For Humanity sees an opportunity to build stronger communities. They provide architecture, planning and project management services including construction management and post-occupancy analysis, and facilitate community engagement throughout each project. The core of their mission? They believe everyone deserves access to the benefits of good design.
Grassroot Soccer uses the power of soccer to educate, inspire, and mobilize communities to stop the spread of HIV and AIDS. Through a network of capable volunteers, this nonprofit identifies and connects local role models with kids to play games of community-organized soccer. They don't play just for fun, though! Each team also participates in Grassroot Soccer's innovative "Skills Curriculum," an interactive program that uses soccer as a way to teach kids to adopt healthy behaviors and live risk free — with the ultimate aim of creating a new, AIDS-free generation.
Village Enterprises works to equip people living in extreme poverty with the resources to create sustainable businesses. Working one-on-one with communities, they deliver business and financial literacy training, assist in crafting business plans, provide on-going mentoring during a year-long program, and help form business savings groups. This approach helps to boost income in a sustainable way — and allows families to thrive long into the future.
Pure Water for the World is more hands-on than most — ninety percent of their staff reside in the field in Haiti or the Honduras, working one-on-one with communities to build sustainable water solutions based on the unique needs of each neighborhood. Their projects include installing simple, sustainable filtration technologies, building sanitation facilities, and providing a comprehensive education on the use and upkeep of both. They also partner with local governments to provide high-level training on the prevention of waterborne diseases. To date, they've served thousands of homes and schools, plus helped almost half a million people gain regular access to safe drinking water.
The Possible Project is a youth entrepreneurship center that teaches high school students to start and run their own businesses. Working with a team of top-tier mentors and professionals, students are guided through a six part curriculum that provides them training in core concepts like business development, as well as hands-on experience in real working environments. By the time they're done, they've learned everything from basic customer service skills to the ins-and-outs of website building and 3D printing — making them truly equipped for success in our modern world.
Action Against Hunger is committed to ending world hunger, working to save the lives of malnourished children while providing communities with sustainable access to safe water and nutritious food. By working hand-in-hand with local leadership, they're able to address both immediate needs — like chronic malnutrition and emergency relief — as well as empower communities to bolster their overall agricultural production and jumpstart local market activity. The result? The enhanced access of vulnerable communities to sustainable sources of food and income.
Possible delivers high-quality, low-cost healthcare to rural areas where access to resources is scarce. By working within existing government infrastructure, they're able to deliver needed care through the coordinated efforts of hospitals, clinics, and community health workers — a model that allows them to deliver integrated care aligned with national priorities. To date, they've treated more than 200,000 patients in our world's most hard-to-reach places, providing a totally new — and very hopeful — vision of what's possible in healthcare.
For 40 years, the American Brain Tumor Association (ABTA) has been providing comprehensive resources that support the complex needs of brain tumor patients and caregivers, as well as critical funding for research in the pursuit of breakthroughs in brain tumor diagnosis, treatment and care. In the last year alone, they've funded dozens of cutting edge projects — from developing new medicine to researching cellular metabolism — and provided support to hundreds of people with their specialized Care Consultants.
Creative Commons is dedicated to the sharing of knowledge and creativity through free legal tools, like easy-to-use copyright licenses and a library of freely available content for general public use. From songs and videos to scientific materials, Creative Commons facilitates access to hundreds of millions of valuable public works, and is widely used by everybody from Flickr and Al Jazeera to bands like Nine Inch Nails.
Books For Africa is the largest provider of donated books to the African continent, having shipped over 30 million books to 49 different countries since 1988. In a country where the average classroom has one book per 20 students, these donated volumes are able to have a tremendous impact on education and literacy rates.
The Alliance for a Healthier Generation works within individual communities to improve the overall health of children everywhere. In partnership with local schools, organizations, and healthcare professionals, they've achieved important milestones for kid's health like reducing the number of calories in elementary school lunches and providing special anti-obesity training to doctors. By teaching kids good habits today, they're ensuring a healthier — and happier — tomorrow.
KIPP is a national network of free, open-enrollment, college-preparatory public schools dedicated to preparing students in underserved communities for college. By focusing not just on day-to-day education, but the development of crucial leadership and career skills, KIPP ensures that their students will graduate to a lifetime of success.
Freedom from Hunger brings innovative and sustainable self-help solutions to the fight against chronic hunger and poverty. Together with local partners, they equip families with resources they need to build futures of health, hope and dignity. For example, their practical adult education programs engage women at their microfinance group meetings — to promote better health, nutrition, business and money management. Using dialogue, story, song, demonstrations and pictures, women with little or no schooling acquire knowledge and practical skills.
Women Employed works to change public policy and workplace practice in ways that enable the achievement of women everywhere. For more than 40 years, they have drafted testimony, rallied students, secured grants, persuaded legislators, shared ideas with educators, brainstormed with business leaders, tweeted — all in the passionate pursuit of a better future for all working women.
Good Neighbors provides crucial support and resources to more than 17 million people across the world. Their myriad programs provide everything from education and nutritious food to school children to vocational training for budding entrepreneurs, assistance in development for local agriculture and targeted medical services for diseases like AIDs and malaria.
Lovin’ Spoonfuls is dedicated to facilitating the rescue and distribution of healthy, fresh food that would otherwise be discarded. Working efficiently to deliver this food directly to the community organizations and resources where it can have the greatest impact, this nonprofit is committed to addressing the health, environmental, and economic impact that food waste has on our community — all while serving up delicious meals for all.
The National Guild for Community Arts Education supports and advances lifelong learning opportunities in the arts. They foster the creation and development of community arts education organizations by providing research and information resources, professional development, networking opportunities, funding, and advocacy on behalf of the field. Collectively, their members offer arts instruction to more than 2.5 million students each year, employ more than 20,000 teaching artists, and reach some 8 million more Americans through performances and exhibitions.
Founded in 1998, Girls Educational & Mentoring Services (GEMS) helps girls and young women who have experienced commercial sexual exploitation and domestic trafficking. They provide a spectrum of comprehensive legal and educational services including prevention-based outreach, direct intervention, and general court advocacy — an approach which not only helps women exit the industry, but keeps them from ever entering at all.
Project Night Night donates over 25,000 "Night Night Packages" each year, free of charge, to homeless children who need childhood essentials to feel secure, cozy, and ready to learn. Each package, which contains a new security blanket, an age-appropriate children's book, and a stuffed animal, provides objects of reliable comfort which are able to reduce trauma and advance the emotional and cognitive well-being of children in need.
Thrive Networks helps empower the world’s most disadvantaged people move from survival to potential, by supporting pioneering programs around the world in health, water and sanitation, and education. To date, their impact can be counted in the 70,000+ scholarships they've delivered, the 200,000 children they've provided with dental care to, and the 1.7 million people that now have access to clean drinking water. These critical resources have the potential to transform lives — and entire communities — for the better.
Since 1995, Green Map System has engaged with over 900 communities in 65 countries to map their green cultural spaces, ecological resources, and green living methodologies. Mapmaking teams have ranged from classrooms full of students to environmentally-conscious adults, resulting in stronger local sustainability networks and an increased public demand for smarter, greener choices.
3 Generations is dedicated to helping survivors of atrocities tell their stories to the world through film. To date, their archive of voices includes survivors of genocide, war, and sex trafficking — each story serving as an act of healing, a form of remembrance, and an essential call to action. One great example? Their collection of veteran's stories now serves as the centerpiece of a campaign to expand job opportunities for men and women returning from war.
College and Community Fellowship aids women who have been involved with the criminal justice system in successfully completing their college educations. Their multi-faceted approach stresses academic support, social coaching, and career development — lowering recidivism rates while providing life-changing opportunities to dozens of women in each year.
Founded in 1990, the Electronic Frontier Foundation has been at the forefront of the digital rights movement longer than most of us have even been connected to the internet. Today, they work with a globally-based network of experts and activists to champion free speech, advocate for user privacy, and educate both policymakers and the general public on basic digital rights and freedoms. A few examples of their work: a recent "Dear FCC" campaign, which calls on the public to defend net neutrality, and their "Student Activism Toolkit," which provides the fundamentals for building your very own grassroots campaign.
The Sunlight Foundation make important government data, like election spending and the voting records of state officials, openly available and easily accessible to the public. Their handy digital tools include "Influence Explorer," which breaks down how companies and lawmakers influence the political system, and "Scout," which provides users with customizable alerts on issues they care about.
Every year, millions of Americans are impacted by sexual health and well-being issues, from STDs and unintended pregnancy to a pervasive lack of sexual pleasure and poor self-esteem. Sexual Health Innovations is committed to solving these problems through the use of accessible, freely distributed technology — such as confidential reporting systems for sexual assault victims and anonymous partner notification, post-STD diagnosis.
Preeclampsia is a hypertensive disorder that occurs only during pregnancy and the postpartum period. Globally, disorders of this nature are a leading cause of maternal and infant illness — responsible for more than half a million deaths a year — but many women remain unaware of the disorder's symptoms and, thus, ill prepared to seek necessary care. The Preeclampsia Foundation works to reverse that trend by improving early diagnosis, educating the general public on basic preventative methods, and by fostering an active online community of families and medical experts.
Root Capital grows rural prosperity in poor, environmentally vulnerable places in Africa and Latin America by lending capital, delivering financial training, and strengthening market connections for small and growing agricultural businesses. By focusing on environmentally-conscious organizations, Root Capital ensures that their investment today will lead to a better, more sustainable future for all.
From the far reaches of Bhutan to the mountains of Nepal, READ works with rural villages to build fully-stocked, locally-supported libraries. By emphasizing community involvement and engagement, these centers serve as much more than places to read books — they become the catalyst for significant, long-term economic and social change by boosting literacy rates and enabling critical self-education.
For over 60 years, the National Hemophilia Foundation has been dedicated to finding better treatments and cures for inheritable bleeding disorders, as well as preventing the complications of these disorders through education and advocacy. Their efforts have helped ensure access to treatment for thousands of people, as well as funded innovative research aimed at finding a cure.
Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater continues the tradition of a fabled modern dancer, the late Alvin Ailey. Over the last 60 years, its repertoire of dancers has performed for an estimated 25 million people across the entire world — becoming a powerful and enduring vehicle for both expressing and celebrating the African American cultural experience.
The Immune Deficiency Foundation is dedicated to improving the diagnosis, treatment, and quality of life of persons with primary immunodeficiency diseases (PI) — a group of more than 200 rare, chronic disorders in which part of the body's immune system is either missing or functioning improperly. By funding critical research alongside ongoing public advocacy and education, this organization strives to permanently better the lives of all those affected by PI.
KCRW is one of America's leading independent radio stations, broadcasting an electric mix of music, news, and cultural programming to over half a million people every single day. Although based in southern California, the station has gained international acclaim — partnering with heavyweights like NPR and PRI to bring award-winning content to listeners all over the world.
VisionSpring provides affordable eyeglasses to disadvantaged communities around the world, ensuring that poor sight won't interfere with day-to-day education, work, or life enjoyment. They also make sure to work closely with each community they serve in order to ensure that the best glasses are ending up in the right hands.
Tostan empowers African communities to bring about sustainable development and positive social transformation based on a fundamental respect for human rights. Just one example of their work: Community Empowerment Programs. Fueled by a committee of democratically elected local leaders, these projects help solve core social issues — like boosting enrollment in school, creating gender equality in local government, and reducing the spread of diseases like malaria and AIDS.
National Novel Writing Month organizes events where children and adults find the inspiration, encouragement, and structure they need to achieve their creative potential. Their programs include"The Young Writers Program," which provides free writing workbooks, virtual tools, and curriculums to K-12 classrooms, and "The Come Write In" program, which helps turn local libraries and bookstores into neighborhood writing havens. Of course, there's also their namesake event — the "National Novel Writing Month," which annually challenges people to write a 50,000 word novel in 30 days. "Kids" of all ages are welcome.
The Alliance for the Great Lakes is dedicated to conserving and restoring the world's largest freshwater resource: the five Great Lakes. By advocating for pollution control while working to develop new policies around future water usage, the Alliance aims to ensure these magnificent bodies of water will be preserved — and enjoyed — for many generations to come.
Hundreds of journalists are killed, harassed, or imprisoned, worldwide, every year. For the last three decades, the Committee to Protect Journalists has been there to defend them. Their team advocates for free speech, the protection of journalists under the law, and the right to privacy, in addition to providing free educational resources for reporters covering potentially dangerous topics (or entering politically unstable territories). They also publicly track the disappearances and deaths of journalists in the field — coverage that keeps a critical spotlight on the rights of these men and women, as well as the importance and necessity of their work.
Obstetric fistula is a condition that occurs during childbirth when a woman's birth canal becomes obstructed for a prolonged period of time. In countries with access to medical care, it's a highly curable condition. Throughout many impoverished regions, it's often deadly. The Fistula Foundation works closely with doctors in the most vulnerable areas to reverse those odds by funding treatment for individual women, training surgeons, and arranging for critical upgrades to medical equipment. To date, they've funded more fistula repairs than any other nonprofit in their field — providing life-changing care to women all around the world.
All Hands Volunteers provides immediate, effective and sustainable support to communities suffering in the wake of natural disasters. By harnessing the energy and commitment of dedicated volunteers, this organization is able to deliver help quickly and effectively, from Colorado all the way to the Philippines. Plus, once volunteers are on the ground, they don't stop at repairing immediate damage — they also focus on long-term recovery and rebuilding efforts.
TechnoServes connects emerging entrepreneurs in impoverished areas to the capital and resources they need to build thriving companies. From Nicaragua and Peru all the way to rural reaches of Africa, they've provided essential mentors, skills training, and funding to build better farms, create self-sustaining businesses, boost locally-grown products, and help business leaders give back to their communities.
The National Association of the Deaf is the nation's premier civil rights organization for deaf and hard-of-hearing individuals based in America. Established in 1880 by leaders in the deaf community, NAD advocates for early interventions, youth leaderships, funding for assisted technology, and more — ensuring that the collective interests of this group are represented and accounted for at a national level.
GreenBlue works with major corporations — PepsiCo, Johnson & Johnson, and Procter & Gamble, to name a few — to reduce waste at each step of the production cycle. From cleaner ingredients to more sustainable packaging practices, including thorough assessments of biodegradation in landfills, this organization targets every phase of development and distribution to ensure that environmental impact is minimal, truly redefining what it means to be a conscious consumer.
Each year, Stop Hunger now provides millions of nutritious meals and other life-saving aid to children and families around the world. By mobilizing dedicated teams of volunteers — sometimes as many as 500 at a time — this vital program is able to provide easily transportable meals at roughly 29 cents a pop, meaning they can quickly deliver food wherever there is need.
HeartGift provides lifesaving heart surgery to children from around the world where specialized medical treatment is either scarce or nonexistent. To date, their work has saved more than 225 children from 30 countries — simply by funding the transport of children and their parents to travel to the U.S. for care, as well as covering medical fees and necessary professional services.
Oceana is dedicated to protecting and restoring the world's oceans on a global scale. Using a policy-focused approach, they've helped ban shark finning in the European Union, curbed offshore drilling in Belize, and pushed for stricter regulations on overfishing around the world. They've also racked up dozens of significant victories campaigning for the preservation of marine wildlife, from the very smallest (clown fish) to the very biggest (blue whales).
Founded by the creators of the Academy Award-winning short film "Trevor," The Trevor Project is the leading national organization providing crisis intervention and suicide prevention services to lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and questioning (LGBTQ) youth. The Trevor Lifeline offers 24/7 assistance by phone, chat, or text message, ensuring that trained counselors are always available in times of need, while programs like Trevor Ally Training educate adults on how to be empathetic and supportive to those they know who are struggling.
The Worldwide Orphans Foundation provides children without families the resources to become healthy, independent, productive members of their communities. Their localized social programs offer everything from basic health care to soccer leagues and college assistance – but one of their most impactful initiatives might "One-to-One," which connects orphaned children with retired local women for play, conversation, and loving company.
Code.org is dedicated to exposing all students, everywhere, to computer science. To date, 45 million people have viewed their innovative, one hour tutorials — fun, bite-sized introductions to coding that can be tailored to any type of learner — and their annual "Hour of Code" week has attracted students from over 180 countries. They also offer simple game-building software, offline tutorials for those without regular internet access, and easy-to-implement curriculums that can be brought to community centers, classrooms, and living rooms across the world.
The Solar Electric Light Fund (SELF) designs and implements solar energy solutions to assist the 1.5 billion people living in energy poverty around the world. Just one example of their great work: after the 2010 earthquake in Haiti, SELF and Partners in Health launched the "Rebuilding Haiti Initiative," which delivered electricity to eight health centers, installed 100 solar powered streetlights in tent camps, and is in the process of developing solar solutions at a fish farm, twenty schools, and a microenterprise center.
Around the world, women and girls are working to break free of poverty, hunger, violence, and inequality. Women Thrive Worldwide stands with them, amplifying their voices to realize transformational change in international assistance and U.S. policies. To date, they've helped advance critical reforms that promote access to education, equal rights in the workplace, and the prevention of domestic violence.
IDEO.org brings human-centered, design-based solutions to the millions of people facing poverty in our world. Collaborating closely with locally-based foundations, they've built low-cost seed planters in Ethiopia, redesigned family planning services in Zambia, and facilitated the use of mobile banking tools to rebuild communities in post-disaster areas.
Khan Academy is a website providing free education for anyone, anywhere in the world. Their online library includes tutorials on everything from math and chemistry to art history, and helps students learn through interactive challenges, video lessons, and step-by-step guides. To date, they've delivered over 400 million lessons from 350,000 teachers to students as far-flung as South Africa and Brazil.
Every year in the United States, half a million young people drop out of high school — often because they're disengaged and don't find their education relevant. Knowing this, BUILD created a four-year, hands-on entrepreneurship training and college preparation program that teaches kids the real world business and leadership skills they need to succeed. The approach has seen astounding results. To date, 99 percent of BUILD seniors have graduated from high school and 95 percent have been accepted to college.
Give Back Yoga is a grassroots community of volunteers, activists, and teachers who aim to transform humanity and reduce suffering by making classical yoga available to all. Their myriad programs include Yoga For Veterans, the Prison Yoga Project, and Eat Breathe Thrive, which helps individuals fully recover from eating disorders. They also provide needed funding for locally-based, yoga-related wellness initiatives across the country.
JDRF is the leading global organization funding type 1 diabetes research, in an effort to better treat, prevent, and eventually cure the disease. This month, they tackle National Diabetes Awareness Month with their "Turn Type One Into Type None" campaign, which connects thousands of people affected by type 1 diabetes in an effort to raise public awareness. You can join the conversation by following #diabetesmonth.
Every year, 287,000 women around the world die as a result of complications during pregnancy and childbirth. Of these deaths, an overwhelming majority could be prevented with access to basic medical supplies, proper facilities, and trained caregivers. Every Mother Counts addresses these deficiencies in essential maternal health care with a series of innovative social programs that provide tens of thousands of women, from Florida to Uganda, with the care and resources they need to have a healthy pregnancy and childbirth.
The Wikimedia Foundation works to mobilize a globally-based community of volunteers in the creation of free, widely distributed, multilingual educational content. They operate some of the largest collaboratively edited reference projects in the world, including Wikipedia — the world's most widely used encyclopedia, which contains over 30 million volunteer-authored articles in over 287 languages.
BRAC is devoted to empowering impoverished communities with economic independence through a series of interconnected social programs, like low cost health care, free legal aid, adult literacy centers, and disaster preparedness services. Originally launched in Bangladesh in 1972, BRAC now provides relief work in over a dozen cities — enabling positive, large-scale changes all across the developing world.
In 2006, Muhammad Yunus and Grameen Bank received the Nobel Peace Prize for their pioneering work fighting global poverty through microfinance. Since then, the Grameen Foundation has gone on to deliver innovative financial tools — like mobile banking and simple electronic wallets — to millions of impoverished communities around the world, as well as essential information on health and agriculture.
Each year, millions of dollars worth of surplus merchandise goes unsold and is destroyed. Where others saw waste, though, Good360 saw an opportunity — they started collecting nonperishable excess items, like clothing and school supplies, and redistributing them to pre-qualified charities. Since its founding in 1983, Good360 has helped provide more than $7 billion worth of donations to nonprofits, schools, hospitals, and homeless shelters.
The Alzheimer's Association is the world's leading voluntary health organization focused on Alzheimer's care and research. Working with a series of locally-based chapters, they're able to give enhanced aid to those currently affected by the diseases, as well as provide critical support to family members. Additionally, their 24/7 helplines — accessed by a quarter of a million people each year — offer information on disease maintenance and risk reduction.
Polaris is committed to the identification and elimination of human trafficking networks all across the world. Launched in 2002 by a pair of college seniors, it has quickly grown into a national resource center for outreach, education, and prevention. In addition to providing training to law enforcement officers and first responders, this organization also provides a critical lifeline to those directly affected by the industry.
Challenge Detroit is an urban revitalization project that invites talented individuals from all over the world to live, work, and give in the greater Detroit area. Over the course of one year, participants partner with local organizations to tackle everything from public transport problems to public art projects. Looking good, Motor City.
For over four decades, the Union of Concerned Scientists has brought the scientific community together with concerned citizens to advocate for public policy toward a sustainable future. So far, the accomplishments of their 400,000 strong membership range from groundbreaking regional analysis of climate change effects to overseeing the use of science in government decision making.
Founded in 1994, Ovarian Cancer Research Fund is America's oldest and largest research center for ovarian cancer. To date, OCRF has given over 200 grants to leading scientists across the country, providing crucial funds for innovative research into the cancers identification and ultimate prevention.
Since 2001, Baby Buggy has worked to distribute essential family items to under-resourced moms and dads all across America. Donations, which include everything from bottles to baby strollers, are offered through partnership with proven community-based organizations, ensuring that a crib today will help build a better tomorrow for the whole family.
Facing History and Ourselves is an innovative program that strives to bring a new historical perspective to classrooms across America. Through nuanced discussions and exploration of complex world events — like World War II and the Holocaust — students learn not just our history, but the critical thinkings skills required to apply past lessons to future choices.
La Casa de las Madres responds to calls for help from domestic violence victims, of all ages, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. They give survivors the tools to transform their lives, including emergency shelter and long term counseling, and work to prevent future violence by redefining public perceptions about domestic violence.
4 Paws for Ability enriches the lives of disabled children and veterans by providing them with service dogs. From seizure assistance to food allergen detection, each animal is uniquely trained to serve the needs of their owners — offering a new level of life-changing independence, as well as valuable companionship. 4 Paws also strives to improve the lives of their animals, assisting with dog rescue where necessary, and working to educate the general public on service dog placement and use.
GoodWeave is helping to transform the handmade rug industry by certifying child-labor-free rugs and by providing education and opportunities to rescued and at-risk children. Their work has drastically reduced the number of children carpet-workers — from 1 million to 250,000 — while providing countless at-risk youth with the means and the opportunity to embark on a new path in life.
Echoing Green provides funding and support to hundreds of social entrepreneurs, singling out and empowering those people who are striving to solve our world's biggest problems. Their esteemed alumni include education advocates introducing robotics training to rural classrooms, experts in poverty alleviation developing scalable cooperatives in low income communities, and innovative thinkers creating cooperative youth centers to empower immigrants.
Since 2003, StoryCorps has collected and archived more than 45,000 interviews with nearly 90,000 people across America. One of the largest oral history projects of its kind, the powerful stories collected in these conversations range from finding first love to losing a family member to highly personal meditations on self-acceptance. On one level, it's just life. On another, it's a moving portrayal of our shared humanity.
In 1987, computer scientist Anita Borg started a digital community for women in the field of technology. Today, her organization — the Anita Borg Institute — works with women technologists in over 50 countries, providing both inspiration and practical guidance to other women in the field.
The Canary Foundation is dedicated to progressing scientific research around early cancer detection. Comprised of the field's leading scientists, the Canary Research Team collaboratively explores new technologies — like blood and imaging biomarker discovery — with the potential to be used in early diagnostics tests. The results of their work could be, literally, life saving.
For four decades, American Rivers has sought to safeguard clean water by managing pollution, restoring critical water sources, and lobbying for legislative reform. Their efforts have saved more than 150,000 miles of river, ensuring that we'll have clean drinking water — and recreational swimming! — for generations to come.
The Global Fund For Women strives to advance the rights of women and girls worldwide by increasing investment in women-led organizations. To date, they've provided funding in over 170 countries, from the Middle East and Latin America to Sub-Saharan Africa, providing crucial resources for female entrepreneurs. Among their many successful projects: an all-female driver's school in Nepal and women-centered, sustainable agriculture initiatives in Uganda.
Ushahidi, which means "testimony" in Swahili, began in 2008 as an ad hoc group of volunteers who created a website to map post-election violence and peace efforts in collaboration with citizen journalists in Kenya. Now an organized nonprofit, Ushahidi is committed to internet democracy and transparency and creates free and open source tools that allow anyone to gather distributed data and visualize it on a map or timeline. Ushahidi's mission is to create the simplest way of aggregating information from the public to use in times of crisis.
Throughout it's 25-year history, amfAR has invested over $366 million in programs that have advanced HIV prevention, treatment, and care. Among their numerous accomplishments: critical research into new drug treatments, support for forward-thinking social programs, and the formation of a 17,000-person observational database for tracking the disease and its effects.
Partners in Health have been delivering high quality medical care in settings of poverty for more than 25 years, from health centers in Rwanda to teaching hospitals in Haiti. By establishing long-term relationships with local institutions, PIH works to both bring the benefits of modern medical science to those most in need and to serve as a source of enduring hope.
KaBOOM! is dedicated to bringing balanced and active play into the daily lives of all kids, particularly those growing up in poverty in America. Since 1996, KaBOOM! has collaborated with partners to build, open or improve nearly 16,000 playgrounds, engaged more than one million volunteers and served 7.4 million children. Who knew doing good could be so much fun?
Autism Speaks is the world's leading autism science and advocacy organization, dedicated to funding research into the disorder's prevention, treatment, and awareness. Working alongside local activists, Autism Speaks consolidates grassroots support around important state initiatives — like autism insurance reform — that can have a lasting impact on diagnosis and treatment.
The American Foundation for Suicide Prevention is committed to uniting communities around the understanding and prevention of suicide. By funding critical research into suicide's leading causes, as well as supporting public education and advocacy, the foundation has built a cross-country network of community-based care for at-risk persons and their families.
The It Gets Better Project strives to provide mentors and role models to LGBT youth who struggle with their sexuality. Founded just three years ago, its online video library already boasts around 50,000 user-created messages from business people, celebrities, and even statesmen — like U.S. President Barack Obama himself. Together, these messages of self-love and acceptance are providing strength and compassion to an entire generation of children.
The Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation is dedicated to curing spinal cord injury and assisting those currently living with paralysis. Since its creation, it has raised over $80 million — funding innovative research, providing quality of life grants to those in need, and regularly advocating for issues related to paralysis.
Fostering education via nutrition, The Lunchbox Fund is a non-profit organization dedicated to providing a daily meal for orphaned and vulnerable school children in township and rural areas of South Africa, a country where 56% of all children live in poverty. Their simple intervention of a nutritionally fortified meal at school encourages attendance. With education, a student’s risk of HIV infection and abuse is greatly reduced and their ability to generate income is significantly increased.
Stupid Cancer links the worlds of music, advocacy, and technology in order to provide comprehensive resources for young people diagnosed with cancer. The largest US-based non-profit of its kind, this innovative organization has launched an annual young adult cancer conference, founded a popular podcast, and mobilized millions of people to stand up for the rights of patients. By standing together, they're letting every individual cancer patient know: "You're not alone."
Agora supports early-stage entrepreneurs in Latin America who are focused on solving social and environmental challenges through business. Since their founding, they've supported a variety of high impact programs such as youth employment programs in rural Nicaragua and sustainable post-disaster relief housing in Haiti. By empowering the success of socially-conscious companies across developing nations, they're working to ensure a sustainable future for the planet.
The Conservation Fund is committed to saving America's oldest, most special places. From historic battlefields to pristine waterfalls deep in the wild, they've worked with local communities and government representatives to preserve over seven million acres of beautiful North American landscape.
WITNESS is an international nonprofit that trains human rights defenders in video documentation, then brings their stories to the public as a catalyst for grassroots activism and policy change. Through partnership with hundreds of internationally based organizations, their video testimonials have been used to accomplish feats like bringing a Congolese warlord to justice and enacting legislation to protect elderly Americans from abuse.
Zero To Three is a national organization that provides parents, professionals, and policymakers with the know-how to nurture early development in children. With a variety of programs available — from "Parent Education" all the way to "Pediatrics" — any parent can customize a developmental agenda that suits the specific needs of themselves and their families.
Team Rubicon is an organization that rapidly responds, on a global basis, to natural disasters by deploying first-response teams of highly skilled military veterans and medics. Not only does this provide a meaningful service opportunity for willing veterans — it brings the quickest possible relief to those in need.
Water For People joins communities, local entrepreneurs and governments in an effort to provide clean water, adequate sanitation systems, and basic health services to impoverished communities. By designing solutions based on long-term needs, this organization hopes to catalyze critical changes that will result in longer — and better — lives for all.
Seva has helped restore eyesight to nearly 3.5 million people around the world — simply by bringing affordable eye care to areas of extremely limited service. From Tibet to Tanzania, this Berkeley-based organization trains local staff in community-based, preventative care, creating networks of skilled and self-sufficient neighborhood practitioners.
The Alliance for Children's Rights protects the rights of impoverished, abused and neglected children and foster youth. By providing free legal services and advocacy, the Alliance ensures children have safe, stable homes, healthcare and the education they need to thrive. They also work to create system-wide change for foster youth through public policy reform. For many of their clients, the Alliance is the only connection to a safer, brighter future.
iMentor is dedicated to connecting influential mentors with high school students in low income communities. Students work with their mentors one-on-one to develop strong personal relationships, nurture college aspirations, navigate the college application process, and build critical skills that lead to not just academic achievement, but a better set of lifeskills. In addition to in person mentorship, iMentor also provides an interactive template that other organizations can use to implement their own effective mentoring programs across the nation.
Taproot connects pro bono business talent — like graphic designers, publicity representatives, and human resource managers — to organizations that are working to improve society. By providing under-resourced, socially-minded companies with essential business services, Taproot aims to maximize the amount of impact each of them can have.
PeacePlayers International brings children from communities in conflict together to play basketball. From South Africa to the West Bank, coaches and mentors work year round to teach kids how to lead both on and off the court — resulting in a generation of young athletes who possess the skills and heart to change their own communities for the better.
Founded in 2008 by a group of American university students, 350.org has grown into a leading campaigner for climate-focused policy change. Their globally-based network reaches people in over 188 countries, allowing them to activate mass public actions — like the International Day of Climate Action in 2009 — that have the power to make a difference at the top. By proposing sustainable solutions for today, they're striving to ensure a better tomorrow for us all.
Girls Who Code is a program that works to educate and equip girls with the computing skills to pursue 21st century opportunities. Working alongside leading educators, engineers, and entrepreneurs, GWC provides intensive instruction combined with high-touch mentorship and exposure to the industry's top female engineers — inspiring legions of young women to take on an entire industry, one line of code at a time.
Samasource connects women and youth living in poverty to steady work via the Internet. Called "microwork," these remote jobs provide critical skills-training while offering a living wage — helping leverage families out of poverty and into a bright, new future.
826 National is a cross-country network of writing and tutoring centers that provide under-resourced kids with mentorship, scholarships, and free "fun"-shops on everything from cartooning to playwriting. Mirroring the lovably idiosyncratic nature of its co-founder, bestselling author Dave Eggers, each center has a themed storefront — "pirates" and "superheroes" are just two examples — so that kids feel inspired from the moment they step through the door.
One Acre Fund works with farmers in rural areas across the world to provide crucial supportive services, such as agricultural training, fertilizer distribution, and financing. By helping individual farmers improve their harvests and produce surpluses, One Acre Fund is effectively able to empower the resurgence of entire communities.
D-Rev designs disruptive and radically affordable products that solve critical issues in developing communities. Among D-Rev's innovative designs are a high-performance knee joint for amputees, blue-light jaundice treatment for infants, and solar technology to power rural households. D-Rev remains invested throughout the lifecycle of its products in order to ensure optimal and sustained impact.
Since the year 2000, ShelterBox has responded to nearly 200 disasters in 75 countries, supplying critical aid to more than half a million people in need. Their all-purpose aid kits are customized on a case-by-case basis, but each always provides fundamentals like warm blankets, water purification equipment, cooking utensils, and tents. One box at a time, they're helping families all over the world get back on their feet.