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Giving Guide 2017

While I am enjoying the Gift Guides that many bloggers and podcasts are putting out this week, in honor of #GivingTuesday I'd like to offer a Giving Guide for this holiday season.

Giving Tuesday was established in 2012 to set aside a day that was all about celebrating the generosity of giving. In a season that can be all about buying and receiving, it's a mental shift to look beyond ourselves and give to an organization that may not directly benefit us or even places where we've volunteered and learned to love their mission.

#GivingTuesdayCLT has grown over the past couple of years and is much needed to bring attention to the great non-profits in our area. 230+ non-profits in the Charlotte area will receive matching funds today. I love the mission of this movement!

If you are looking for ideas on where to give, here are six of my favorites. Click on the name to be linked to each organizations giving pages.

1. Let Me Run

Let Me Run is a nonprofit wellness program that inspires boys to be themselves, be active, and belong. With a comprehensive curriculum that applies the power of running, Let Me Run encourages boys to develop their psychological, emotional and social health, in addition to their physical health.

2. Colon Cancer Coalition

The Colon Cancer Coalition has set a goal for 2018 of funding over $1.5 million in screening, awareness, and patient support to reach more people and save more lives. This organization supports the local community with programs to increase screening, help the families of those suffering through treatment, and increase awareness of this silent disease.

3. Girls on the Run

Girls on the Run was started in Charlotte in 1996. The program uses fitness and targeted lessons to give each girl:

• A better understanding of who she is and what is important to her.

• Recognition of the importance of team work and healthy relationships.

• Confidence to overcome the obstacles she faces.

• An appreciation for how she can positively impact and shape our world.

4. Shining Hope Farms

Shining Hope Farms provides hippotherapy and therapeutic riding to those in need in the Charlotte area. All funds will be matched today when you give to Shining Hope Farms! Some funds will be used to add equine staff to support our growing programs and the needs of our diverse participants. Some will also be used to maintain and advance our programs as a whole, which enable children with disabilities to achieve functional goals—facilitating transformational quality of life improvements for them and their families. We provide these services with no out of pocket costs to the majority of our families, 36% of which are below 200% of the poverty line.

5. The 410 Bridge

When Hurricane Matthew devastated the southern coast of Haiti in 2016, over 80% of their livestock and agriculture was destroyed. The 410 Bridge worked with local leaders to find a way to restore the livelihoods of our communities so they could begin to rebuild with the help from outsiders. As a result, we had 1,450 families agree to build chicken coops to house ten (10) chickens; ultimately selling their eggs to restore their incomes.

Your gift of $50 will provide two (2) hens, one bag of cement, and chicken feed for 90-days in Haiti, East Africa and Guatemala. And for communities where chickens are not suitable, goats will be provided in place of chickens.

6. The First Tee of Greater Charlotte

The First Tee of Greater Charlotte's goal is to impact the lives of young people by providing educational programs that build character, instill life-enhancing values and promote healthy choices through the game of golf. The program is hosted at public courses throughout the Charlotte area and is highly beneficial in helping children succeed in golf and life!

Now that I've told you about these organizations that I believe in, I better follow my own advice and do some giving. Give today for #GivingTuesday and throughout the year to support these programs and many other worthy non-profits in the Charlotte area.

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