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Charity of the Month – March

One of the best ideas I have come across online in a while is Living Philanthropic. The author of the site (a self-proclaimed “ordinary guy”) is giving to a different charity every day for an entire year. And with just under 30 days left, it looks like he is going to meet his goal. Such a cool idea. He has encouraged others to do the same, so that is what I am starting this month. For year two of his campaign, he is going to pick a charity each month to donate to, which is the model I am going to follow, because I’m lazy and don’t think I would get around to researching enough charities and contributing to one daily. Instead I’ll just pool my money and contribute once per month to a charity of my choice (though I’m open to recommendations). The goal is to contribute to worthy causes and hopefully bring a spotlight on them and encourage others to contribute as well.

I have two long-standing charity relationships that I donate to (very conveniently, via regular paycheck deductions), the Humane Society of Greater Akron and the Akron-Canton Regional Foodbank (whose website oddly seems down at the moment). These two groups are important to me, especially since they are right in my backyard. I do have a tendency to donate locally, but I am open to all kinds of charities. So since I have been donating to these two for a long time, I will not include them in my monthly charitable selections but will continue with my regular donations to them.

So with all that being said, the first charity I have selected is the Jordan’s Family Foundation. They are a local non-profit dedicated to raising awareness and funding for the research and development of Congenital Heart Diseases. Their efforts in raising awareness include public speaking at various events and functions as well providing information pertaining to general heart care and preventative techniques in order to help create and maintain a healthier, happier heart. Some of the money raised has gone to organizations such as the Cleveland Clinic Children’s Hospital Cardiac Research Division and for support groups including the Congenital Heart Information Network (CHIN) and conduct such events as Recess ROCKS! where more than 1000 students joined together to learn about eating heathy, being active and having fun.

This cause is important to me because a very close family member a few years ago suffered a nearly fatal medical emergency due in part to a previously undiagnosed heart defect, a small hole in the heart from birth that is common though usually closes within hours of birth. Also, recently in the news there have been a number of high school athletes who have died during sporting events due to heart defects. These deaths are very sudden and tragic. In addition to the contributions to congenital heart diseases, I like their contributions to programs such as Recess ROCKS! to encourage kids to eat healthy and be active. The rates of childhood obesity in our country are very scary and more needs to be done to address this.

This charity was brought to my attention by my friend Ryan who is raising money for Jordan’s Family Foundation by running the Cleveland Marathon in May. So please consider contributing to his campaign to help raise money for this worthwhile cause.

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