Monday, December 20, 2010

New Favorite Causes

I was at my local salon and saw they have a "Giving Tree".  Once of those that have paper ornaments with a child's name and a few things one might buy him or her for the holidays.  I was told that it was in support of Alliance for the Children, a group based in Northbrook that supports schools and children in multiple states.  I grabbed two on my way out and it was really fun to buy a Star Wars toy again.  I "happened" to grab the list of a ten year old boy that likes Star Wars.  You got something to say?

So I was participating, anyway, but then I went to their website and found they have several really interesting programs, including a "Rewards Program" that has been piloted at a school in Virginia:

"Qualifying schools receive numerous toys and other items which can be earned by students. This program is not based on a student's academic achievement but rather on students who exemplify positive character traits and appropriate behaviors both during the school day and within the community. School administrators will share with students, staff, and parents, clear expectations and guidelines as to how the Rewards Program will be implemented in their buildings."

Points for trying something.

The second group is Project Linus.  I had heard of them before and in fact, I think my mother may have contributed some work to them.  Project Linus provides handmade blankets to kids that are ill, traumatized or otherwise in distress.  According to their website, they have delivered more than 3.5 million blankets as of September 30.

Project Linus is a good example of the different ways that people can find to volunteer. Some opportunities are for a day, or an event, or a drive. Some, like the Library and the Refuge, are weekly assignments. Project Linus allows us to contribute to the cause on our own time, at our own pace as schedules allow.

They are headquartered downstate and there is a local chapter in the neighborhood.  I am not a particularly crafty person, but since I seem to be watching sports more than I am reading books these days, (Hey - Chicago has contenders in three sports.  Before you even count the semi-pros!)  I ought to be able to participate.

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