New research shows that charitable giving for religious organizations declined in the past few years. This trend, Martin Marty suggests, both reflects American’s dwindling interest in religious institutions and offers an opportunity for religious organizations to appeal to "the better angels of their nature."
A vexing question receives a profound answer. And Parker Palmer asks: "What task is calling you — at home, at work, in the larger world — that you need to embrace even though it's impossible?"
On January 20, 2012, I was invited to speak at TEDxMontpellier in southern France. There, I shared my experience in using social media to bring about social change in the Philippines — particularly about my experience in building up the Philippine Funds for Little Kids (or as it is popularly known, the Yellow Boat Project).
It’s been an exciting journey for us over the last 16 months since I first found out about the story of the kids who have to swim just to be able to get to school in the mangrove village of Layag-Layag in Zamboanga City. We gave the first yellow boat last March, and we have since expanded into three communities, namely Layag-Layag, Bgy Talon-Talon, Zamboanga City; Isla Mababoy, Bgy Guinhadap, Monreal, Masbate; and Lakewood, Zamboanga del Sur.
“The self doubt is crippling.” (photo: Meredith Farmer/Flickr, CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)
The Pushcart-nominated poet Yahia Lababidi wrote us this lovely note: “I’m a big admirer of your noble mandate and the fine work that you do. Kindly find two poems below from my new collection: Fever Dreams.”
Here’s the first of those two poems from the Egyptian writer, “Learning to Pray” — a lovely meditation on living life charitably and with intention:
The best — and perhaps quirkiest — aspects of being Mennonite were on display in northern Indiana last weekend. The Michiana MCC Relief Sale is an annual fundraising event for the Mennonite Central Committee (MCC), a world-wide relief organization. The sale is part quilt auction, part junk auction, part garage sale, part bake sale, part county fair, part family reunion.
Folks will donate to help one person in need more often than two. And when presented with those thousands or millions suffering? It's overwhelming and we do not act.
Training and employing unskilled laborers as apprentices and teaching "anyone with a work ethic" how to build.
The former first lady talks about the responsibility of being raised in a privileged society.
A provocative post about the nature of development.
When do charity and aid help, and when are they counterproductive? A video from one group's perspective.
Finding the line between doing good and crippling those one's trying to help — at home and abroad.
I’m confused. An immense amount of media coverage has been dedicated this past year to philanthropic organizations associated with high-power people and companies doing charitable work in a different way. Bill Clinton has argued that pharmaceutical companies can even make a fair margin off of cheap drugs to developing countries in Africa.
Does corporate social responsibility lead to greater profitability for a company’s shareholders? An article in The Harvard Business Review debunks the idea and determines that there is “a very small correlation between corporate behavior and good financial results.”