“There is no way to peace, peace is the way”.

peaceSince today is International Day of Peace, I was thinking of what peace means and how many interpretations there are in regards to peace. This title quote by A.J. Muste is one of many I found on top of the hundreds of organizations that are, in their own way, trying to spread peace across this world of ours. I thought I’d share a few…

Potters for Peace is a U.S. based nonprofit  network of potters, educators, technicians, supporters, and volunteers. Founded in Nicaragua in 1986,  they work with clay artisans in Central America and worldwide on ceramic water purification projects. Potters for Peace offers assistance to  fellow craftspeople in the developing world, with the goal of bettering their livelihoods. This is done in the belief that international peace and justice can be fostered through respectful friendships and equity in economic relationships.potter

Mercy Corps helps people in the world’s toughest places turn the crises of natural disaster, poverty and conflict into opportunities for progress. Driven by local needs and market conditions, our programs provide communities with the tools and support they need to transform their own lives. Our worldwide team of 3,700 professionals is improving the lives of 16.7 million people in more than 40 countries.

Operation Gratitude seeks to lift morale and put smiles on faces by sending care packages addressed to individual Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen and Marines deployed in harm’s way. Operation Gratitude care packages contain Read the rest of this entry

Birthday Buddy

Tired of getting candles / scented lotions for your own birthday or sick of more plastic toys for your kids?  Take a look at this phenomenal program I discovered last year called Birthday Buddy. This is currently through the St. Louis Foster and Adoptive Care Coalition but anyone from anywhere can participate or see if your own local agency has a similar program.

You can make a foster child’s birthday wishes come true by registering to be a Birthday Buddy!  As a Birthday Buddy, you ask your guests to bring birthday presents to donate to a foster child in lieu of gifts for you or your own child. There are currently over 4000 children in foster care in St. Louis and most children spend at least 2 birthdays in foster care.

It couldn’t be easier to become a birthday buddy: Read the rest of this entry

The Gift That Keeps on Giving

A few years ago a friend of mine gifted me $25 on Kiva.org.  If you’ve never heard of Kiva, I strongly encourage you to take a look when you have a chance. Their tag line is “loans that change lives” and that quite accurately is what they do.

For as little as $25, you are able to loan someone in another country a portion of a loan they are requesting in order to start, expand or continue a business. You are able to sort through close to 1000 people and your search can be broken down into gender, sector (education, health, fool, etc.) and region. There is typically a photo and a paragraph outlining how much the person needs, what is will be used for, re-payment terms/schedule and any previous loans they have requested/repaid. Read the rest of this entry