These are the nonprofit organizations we've had the pleasure of working with this past year.
SCRAP DC (no longer operational; please support SCRAP B-MORE in Baltimore)
These are the nonprofit organizations we've had the pleasure of working with this past year.
SCRAP DC (no longer operational; please support SCRAP B-MORE in Baltimore)
♪♪♪ It's the most wonderful time of the year! ♪♪♪ And the most stressful, because we're all trying to get our year-end done at work, better make those appointments you've been putting off, of course I'll make 8 dozen cookies for the office holiday party, better get the house cleaned before the cousins arrive, does little Joey still like trucks? (I'm tired just typing that).
Let DDG help you out. We've put together a guide of some great gifts for the holidays. There's something for everyone, most can be easily ordered online, and best of all, every one of them gives you the opportunity to support a charity, a local business, or sometimes both. These are gifts that do good, and when you give them, you feel good. Okay, technically the gifts aren't doing good, it's not like a hand-poured candle is about to go serve meals at a soup kitchen, but you're a smart cookie, you get the gist. Oooh, cookies...
1. Jaybird and Ro
For the littlest members of the family. Bibs, blankets, bandanas and bows are handmade by a Silver Spring-based mother-daughter team. Fabrics are fun and whimsical -- what toddler doesn't need a bib decorated with the periodic table or a headband in a woodland vine print? We dare you not to ask, "Do you make anything in this fabric for adults?"
Good Giving: Jaybird and Ro donates five percent of proceeds to DC Diaper Bank.
Where to Buy: Etsy
2. Where in the World Books
As lifelong lovers of reading, we think that books are some of the finest gifts that can be given (or gotten). Where in the World Books is a mobile bookseller offering texts to help children and adults of all ages better understand different cultures.
Good Giving: One of the goals of the company is to provide books that "(equip) our kids to be good citizens in our democracy, where civic involvement on specific issues is the key to responsible government," as well as supporting UNICEF and general literacy. As a mobile bookseller, WINWB visits local markets, schools and fundraisers.
Where to Buy: Online, Bethesda Farm Women's Market, Downtown Holiday Market
3. Urban Farm Plans
For the one with the (aspiring) green thumb. Don't we all have that friend who swears he'll start a vegetable garden "next spring"? Time for the excuses to stop. Urban Farm Plans offers consultation sessions, custom design and installation of equipment, including compost sifters and raised beds -- pretty much everything needed, short of the seeds and the watering can. Sure, it's not really a gift you can wrap, but what's Christmas without a little crafting? Break out the glitter and make a custom card: "Happy Holidays. I got you a dirt box."
Good Giving: UFP proprieters, brothers Eriks and Andrejs Brolis, are dedicated environmentalists and devotees of renewal energy. In addition to providing several options for helping customers compost -- a major waste saver, Urban Farm Plans also sells rain cisterns. Not only do cisterns collect rainwater to be recycled for garden use, they also help decrease runoff. In his spare time, Andrejs is a volunteer with National Park Service. The brothers have collaborated with area nonprofits, including Common Good City Farm, and provide community workshops on urban farming.
Where to Buy: Contact UFP to discuss the ins and outs of their garden-riffic gift options.
4. Handmade Habitat
Vegan, environmentally sound soy candles and gifts to soothe the body and soul. Give the gift of winter coziness with an amber and vanilla Nostalgia candle and a tin of soothing cinnamon orange clove Gather tea.
Good Giving: In addition to using eco-friendly materials and piloting a recycling program, Handmade Habitat often pairs with other local, women-owned small businesses that feature handmade items. For the holiday season, HH will donate 10 percent of sales to the National Resources Defense Council. Through science, law, business and advocacy, NRDC works to "ensure the rights of all people to clean air, clean water, and healthy communities."
Where to Buy: West Elm Holiday Pop-Up (Dec. 15), GRUMP (Dec. 17), Denizen's Crafts & Drafts (Dec. 18), online
5. Kicheko Goods
Kicheko: Swahili for "laughter." Handmade necklaces, bracelets and earrings are crafted at the Kicheko design studio in Washington, D.C. Individual pieces and collections are inspired by concepts such as travel, geometry and nature. Most jewelry is made from metal, wood, fabric, natural stones and leather, all ethically sourced whenever possible. We love this simple, but memorable English Fog lariat and the Hope 71 necklace, which represents the first 71 children to receive year-round scholarships to the Mango Tree School in Eastern Congo.
Good Giving: Every Kicheko purchase provides a child in the Democratic Republic of Congo with a scholarship to attend school for one month. “In 2014, proceeds from Kicheko were used to help construct a 6-classroom brick school building for the Mango Tree School.”
Where to Buy: Online, Steadfast Supply, 116 King Holiday Pop-Up
Know someone who's forever sketching or scribbling away? A notebook from WritePads will make a great gift. Choose from a variety of designs, all with a kraft- paper-esque background. There are pocket sizes, steno pads, reporter pads, even notebooks for lefties. WritePad was founded by a third-generation book binder, and all products are made with an eye toward environmental sustainability.
Good Giving: For every notebook purchased, WritePad will donate one to a Baltimore City Public School.
Where to Buy: Online, Brightside Boutique
The gorgeous bonbons from Chocotenango are what the concept of "mindful eating" was made for. Your lucky loved one will be almost reluctant to bite into the sunset ombre of a spicy Maya Chili caramel, then savor the heat of four chilis, the sweetness of caramel, and the bite of dark chocolate. And that's just one flavor! Go for the gift box full of colors and flavors, a tin of hot chocolate (or a trio!) for those blustery winter nights ahead, or how about gifting a chocolate class?! (We're very excited by this concept).
Good Giving: Chocotenango sources cacao beans from farmer-owned cooperatives in the Dominican Republic. A percentage of every bar of chocolate purchased goes to EcoLogic to catalyze community-powered conservation projects in Central America and Mexico.
Where to Buy: Online, also found at gourmet and local food shops throughout the DMV.
8. Leafyhead Lotions and Potions
Leafyhead features all-natural creations to soothe, scrub, pamper and protect your all-natural (or partially natural) body. Owner Tricia McCauley is an herbalist, nutritionist, health coach and yoga teacher (total underachiever, right?). Her products are all organic, sourced locally and ethically as much as possible. We wouldn't mind a man sprinkled with woodsy Gentlemanly Dusting Powder, or how about some ginger- and- cardamom-scented winter Body Butter?
Give Good: Tricia is the resident herbalist at Common Good City Farm, which offers nutrition and gardening education, and helps fight food insecurity in the District. She offers herbal workshops that help you learn about how to identify healing herbs and transform them into teas, lotions and more.
Where to Buy: Etsy, Bloomingdale Holiday Bazaar (Dec. 17, 18) 3 Stars Brewing Artists & Artisans Holiday Extravaganza (Dec. 18)
9. Spoil Me Rotten Dog Biscuit Co.
Do you know any of those people who just live for their pets? Oh, you are those people. Okay. Well, let me just remove my foot from my esophagus and direct you to Spoil Me Rotten Dog Biscuit Co., which offers all-natural, small-batch dog biscuits, free of common allergens like soy, wheat and corn. Gift your favorite furry friend (who is also a dog) tasty treats in flavors like duck confit, peanut butter delight and, yes, pumpkin n' spice. What's the over-under on how many humans taste their pet's canine cookies?
Good Giving: In addition to giving your dog a biscuit that's free of fake, nasty crap, a portion of every sale goes to the Spoil Me Rotten Foundation, providing dog biscuits and donations to animal rescue groups.
Where to Buy: Online, Stores throughout the United States
10. Bailiwick Clothing Company
Here's your gift for that friend who's just full of DC pride. Brothers and Cleveland natives J.C. and Jeff Smith created their line of #DedicatedToDC clothing in honor of their adopted hometown. "...we chose D.C. We weren’t born into it. It wasn’t an arranged marriage. We chose you," J.C. said in an interview with Medium. "We chose D.C. as our prom date, so to speak."
You won't see sports logos or cherry blossoms here. That's not their, uh... wheelhouse. Dig this scoopneck 202 tee, or how about a soft, cotton call to make DC the 51st state (dare to dream). Bryce Harper wore one over the summer, if that helps.
Good Giving: Bailiwick partners with The Black Upstart, an organization that trains African American entrepreneurs in the art and science of starting a business. The Smith brothers local Strivers, so called after the Strivers Section neighborhood, the area that has been synonymous with Black leadership since the 1870's.
Where to Buy: Online
Keep checking in with us here and on our Facebook as we add more give good gifts to our Chrismakwanfestikah list. You can also check out our picks from 2014 (1, 2, 3) and 2015 (style, taste, pet, read, bling, cozy). Happy shopping! #GiveGoodFeelGood
Editor's notes: These products may be available at additional locations, including holiday markets. Retail locations were included if the stockist site mentioned the vendor. Markets or pop-ups were included if the information was on the vendor website. All photos were borrowed from the websites of the respective businesses featured here.
December brings us holiday markets and happy hours galore (plus, this is DC. Happy hours are a dime-a-freakin'-dozen here), but then there's the weird and wonderful, in the parlance of Elton John's "Bennie and the Jets" (once and for all, it's not "electric boobs). We'll be keeping you up-to-date on loads of holly-jolly events to bring out the #dogoodfeelgood spirit, but we wanted to make an extra-special good effort to let you know about a few that are a little silly, sassy, fun, funky, funny, offbeat, off-brand, zany et zarbi (that's Verlan, or French reverse slang, for bizarre).
Blades of Glory
Brush up your Salchows, loop spins and camel toes (wait, no, strike that, reverse it -- toe LOOPS and camel SPINS) for an afternoon of ice skating. Proceeds will purchase a dairy cow and hens, which will provide nutrition and income for children in a Ugandan orphanage. And before you ask, no, the cow will not be purchased in Virginia and transported to Africa -- she refused to fly coach (diva). Come out, have fun, do good, and please remember -- this is not a blood drive: Watch those blades. -- December 11
Mad About Mitzvahs
If doing good spins your dreidel right 'round, join the Jewish Federation's Mitzvah Hoppin' group to celebrate Hanukkah with the residents of Chevy Chase Senior House. A "mitzvah" means a good deed. To our knowledge, there's not a word that means "eating oodles of latkes," but that's always a good idea. - December 18
See the world in chocolate. Join a tour of some of the most spectacular embassies, all gussied up for the holidays (the buildings, not you, though feel free to get decked out if you want), learn about foreign culture and government, and sample chocolate from around the world. Santa would approve. Please note, this is a walking tour. No sleighs provided. December 18
Rollin' With My Homies
It’s everyone’s favorite time of year again! December is the only month of the year when wearing truly hideoous knitwear is not only socially acceptable, but encouraged. #SantaCause, to benefit Safe Shores - The DC Children's Advocacy Center, not only demands that you whack on your best Ugly Christmas Sweater (it should be a proper noun), but a pair of roller skates as well. December 23
Ahh, December....There's no better synonym for the holidays. The first day of December is an exciting reminder for all of us that the year is coming to an end... and considering how crazy a year 2016 has been, this is definitely good news. December is the time when we reconnect with friends and family to celebrate our accomplishments and prepare exciting plans and goals for the new year.
As you cozy up with a cup of hot chocolate and your significant other, we ask you to consider not only those closest to you, but also the people you might not know as well. Whether it's for a neighbor, a coworker, or a stranger on the street, we've put together a list of 31 random acts of kindness you can practice every day this month to put a smile on somebody's face and spread the holiday cheer.
1. Smile at someone when they look your way.
2. Call a relative you haven't spoken to in a while.
3. Compliment someone.
4. Pick up litter.
5. Give a gift to your neighbor (even something as small as a card and a candy cane).
6. Tell your parents/guardians you love them.
7. Pay for the person behind you at a coffee shop or café.
8. Offer to help someone with their bags.
9. Hold the door open for someone.
10.Write someone a love letter.
11. Offer to do the dishes.
12. Donate clothes you don't wear.
13. Let someone ahead of you in line.
14. Write holiday cards to be donated to Cards for Hospitalized Kids.
15. Invite someone over for dinner.
16. Text someone that you are thinking of them.
17. Leave a generous tip for your barista or server.
18. Assemble a care package for our military heroes and send it to Operation Gratitude.
19. Tell someone you are grateful for him/her.
20. Bring a treat to work to share with your coworkers.
21. Give a homeless person a blanket or some food.
22. Make a donation to a nonprofit through AmazonSmile.
23. Offer your seat on the bus or Metro to someone.
24. Offer to give a friend a back rub.
25. Buy someone flowers.
26. Donate children's toys to a hospital or a charity like Toys For Tots.
27. Write someone a thank you note just for being themselves.
28. Babysit for a friend's children.
29. Leave a nice comment on a YouTube video or Instagram picture.
30. Offer directions to someone who seems lost.
30. Say "hi" to a stranger.
31. Give a friend a hug.
Remember, "No act of kindness, no matter how small, is ever wasted." - Aesop.
We hope that you've been inspired by this list. Do good feel good!
Nothing quite represents the start of the holiday season like the month of November. While we prepare for the upcoming holidays, planning trips to visit family and getting a head start on gift shopping, it can be easy to forget that there are many people who live in our community who are not as fortunate as we are. This Thanksgiving, consider showing your gratitude by helping families in need:
So Others Might Celebrate
So Others May Eat is a community-based organization that helps the poor and the homeless in D.C. by providing food and clothing, as well as job training and health care to its clients. Lace up your sneakers for the annual Trot for Hunger, volunteer to prepare meals or staff the dining room, or donate healthy, nonperishables for the SOME pantry. Whether you give in kind or give your time, you get the chance to make an impact.
How Many Metric Tons of Coleslaw is That?
Every year, the Edlavitch DC Jewish Community Center hosts its Everything But The Turkey (EBTT) program to prepare thousands of Thanksgiving meals for those in need. The program takes place from November 20-22, and volunteers can sign up to prepare side dishes such as green beans, stuffing, coleslaw, and more. The food that is prepared will be distributed by DC Central Kitchen to more than 88 homeless shelters and community kitchens in the area.
DCCK is also looking for their own volunteers to help with food preparation and crop gleaning, so sign up to cut, chop, peel or harvesting produce that would otherwise go to waste.
Coats of Arms
There are more than 15,000 homeless people in DC, and winter is coming. In an effort to help individuals stave off the cold, several organizations are holding coat drives. If you have any gently worn winter coats, mitten, or hats that you would like to give away, here are some resources:
The mission of The Holiday Project is to spread cheer among people in nursing homes and hospitals by arranging visits and bringing the holiday spirit directly to the residents. Participate in visits on Thanksgiving and sing-a-longs in December.
I Think I Can
Capitol Area Food Bank has several opportunities to give back throughout the upcoming months. Give canned goods and other nonperishable food items at Giant or Harris Teeter, or purchase a $5 bag of wellness items at Shoppers. All events are happening through November and December.
While the holidays are a wonderful time to donate your energy to helping others, the need for volunteers is year-round. Do not be discouraged if an organization has reached its maximum number of volunteers around this time of year. Your help after the new year will be just as beneficial as it would be in November and December. Do good feel good!
This blog was compiled by Daily Do Good interns Daria Craciun and Dajzia Fratiello
Hi everyone! My name is Dajzia, and am I a fall intern at Do Good LLC. I am from Rhode Island and am studying Public Relations at the University of Rhode Island.
I have an outgoing personality, and I love being adventurous and trying new things. I enjoy music, hanging with friends and discovering new restaurants to enjoy. As a first timer in DC I plan to experience as much as possible. From dining out to seeing the historic monuments, I can't wait to see what to city has to offer.
Being a new member of the Do Good team is an exciting journey for me that I can't wait to embark on. As part of a company that is creative and thriving, I know I will learn so much from this internship.
My name's Daria, and I am an intern for Do Good LLC this fall. I'm from New York City, and I’m a senior Communication major at the State University of New York at Geneseo.
I'm very excited to spend this semester in Washington, D.C. pursuing my interests in marketing and event planning. This is my first time in DC, so I hope to do as much exploring as possible while I am here for the next few months.
A little bit about myself: I love biking, snacking, going to concerts, and watching movies. I am passionate about traveling and have been to more than 10 countries so far. I consider myself an adventurous person who is always up for a good time to see something new or try something different.
I look forward to working with the team at Do Good LLC this fall and inspiring others to get involved in the community.
My name is Benjamin Lawrence and I am an intern with Do Good LLC. Originally from Milwaukee, WI, I transitioned into the DC area in 2008 to go to Howard University. After graduating Howard, I pursued and received my graduate degree with the Chicago School of Professional Psychology in Industrial/Organizational Psychology with a focus on consulting.
These experiences have led me to this wonderful opportunity with Do Good LLC. With my time here, I am looking to expand my expertise in the field of helping nonprofit organizations and adding that to my consulting experiences.
I look forward to my time with the Do Good team and everything that I can learn from the team while I'm here.
Upon first glance, D.C. can be seen as a city full of power-hungry politicians and business people rushing to their next oh-so important meeting. The arts are probably the last thing people think of when discussing D.C.’s normal activities. Although D.C. is a bustling city with a knack for brunch and yoga, the performing arts scene is growing and is quickly becoming a favorite D.C. pastime.
Finding good live art that also has a philanthropic base can be a hefty feat. That being said, we have put together a comprehensive list of nonprofits that all give back to their community in some way.
The Forum Theatre -- Offers accessible, affordable and entertaining plays that inspire conversation surrounding issues that are relevant in local, national, and global aspects. Using a pay-what-you-want ticketing system, The Forum celebrates and welcomes people from all walks of life. They encourage their audience members to pay whatever price they want in return for entertaining and well-done theatre. Keep up-to-date on upcoming shows via Forum-Theatre.org or their Facebook page.
Young Playwrights’ Theatre -- All young artists deserve the chance to showcase their creativity. Young Playwrights’ Theatre empowers children through developing confidence, critical thinking, and language skills in order to create beautiful works of art that they can be proud of. By encouraging their students to take control of their academic and creative success, YPT kids are able to visualize how their work can influence the communities around them. Every student has a voice to showcase his or her story, and YPT creates that space in order for every young artist to develop that story. YPT just concluded their final performance for the season on June 13. Check out their website, Facebook page, and watch clips from past performances on their YouTube channel.
This is My Brave, Inc.- “One day we will live in a world where we won’t have to call it “brave” when talking about mental illness. We’ll just call it talking.” This is My Brave is a community that seeks to break down the stigma surrounding mental illness through original song, poetry, and essay which is then published onto their blog and YouTube page. They believe that mental illnesses have been in the dark too long and that it is time to shed light on these issues.
Only Make Believe- Only Make Believe is an interactive theatre group that seeks to bring joy and inspiration to hospitalized children struggling with chronic illnesses. The troupe of ten actors travels to different hospitals in the D.C. area to create a little magic in those stuffy hospital rooms. OMB is always seeking volunteers to help sew costumes, set up the playrooms, or even just be a helping hand.
THEARC- THEARC is run by Building Bridges Across the River, which is a nonprofit organization that works to improve the lives of those who live east of the Anacostia River. THEARC provides access to educational, cultural, recreational, health, and social service programs. Everyone deserves a chance to engage and participate in theatre and art, and THEARC hosts various theatrical events in their space, including plays, musical productions, round table discussions, and more. THEARC has many shows playing in July. To find out more, check out their website.
About the Author: Madison Kendrick is a summer intern at the Daily Do Good. She studies marketing and political science at Belmont University in Nashville, Tenn. Madison is a longtime dancer and arts enthusiast.
I did not know what to expect on my first day as a dog handler volunteer at an adoption event for Lucky Dog Animal Shelter, but my overall experience was uplifting. I pictured myself walking and playing with the dogs all day, but I found that the reality was much different as soon as I was given my dog, Mayzie. From the moment Mayzie arrived at the adoption event, she was full of excitement, curiosity, and love. Her tail never stopped wagging a million miles per second and she always had a slobbery smile on her face. Mayzie is a black Labrador Terrier who is looking for a furever home. She is about two years old, weighs 50 pounds, and loves to play outside. I never learned how Mayzie ended up in a scary animal shelter, but I cannot imagine anyone wanting to give her away. As a dog handler, my responsibility was to keep Mayzie calm and to answer any questions potential adopters may have about Mayzie.
The day was very challenging for me because Mayzie would not stop barking and charging other dogs for the first hour of the event. She was very hard to control and I had to keep her away from the other dogs. I was nervous that I would spend the entire event separated from everyone else. Although Mayzie’s intentions were good, the other dogs took her eagerness to make friends the wrong way. This usually resulted in both dogs loudly barking while growling and snarling through their teeth. I realized that not all dogs were going to be happy and full of life like Mayzie. Most of these dogs have deep-rooted emotional hardships due to their past experiences.
My favorite dog I met during the adoption event was named Dante. He is very special because he has an extraordinary story and an amazing spirit. Dante is a two-year-old Belgian Malinois Mix who weighs about 40 pounds. He was living on the streets in Puerto Rico when he was hit by a car. Luckily, the volunteers there found Dante and took him to a hospital where he was treated. Unfortunately, a bacterial infection grew in the bone and his leg had to get amputated. I was speaking to his foster mom at the adoption event, and she told me that Dante is the fastest dog she had ever met and he continues to play and live life like any other dog. Dante needs an active lifestyle and I hope that potential adopters do not overlook him due to his uniqueness.
My best friend, Miranda, volunteered with me and the dog she handled for the day was named Jack. Jack is a two year old Border Collie Labrador mix who weighs about 50 pounds. He is the complete opposite of Mayzie. Jack is mellow, cuddly, and was completely calm during the whole adoption event. Jack was a stray who was found on the side of the road. Whoever found Jack brought him to a kill shelter and he was eventually saved by being put in the foster system.
I am so excited to volunteer at future adoption events with Lucky Dog Animal Rescue during my summer here in Washington D.C. There is at least one adoption event every weekend and I hope all of you can volunteer and give these dogs the love and support they deserve!
About the Author: Julia Alspach is an intern with the Daily Do Good.
Play with a Purpose
HIA stands for History in Action. This DC-based company features action figures based on real people, such as aviatrix Bessie Coleman. Combining fun and education, HIA Toys offers teaching guides along with each figure. Call it “play with a purpose.” Get 25 percent off Dec. 17 and 18.
Eat (and Learn!) Your Veggies
DC Greens “connects communities to healthy foods in the nation’s capital.” Through programs like Fruit and Vegetable Prescription and Cooking With Kids, DC Greens works to increase access to, and education about, healthy foods. We love their colorful, seasonal recipe cards.
Coffee lovers, rejoice! Get delicious, locally roasted coffee from Café Los Sueños (translation: Coffee Dreams). Dedicated to supporting education and to improving the lives of coffee farmers. Café Los Sueños has partnered with Cup for Education to support schools in the coffee communities of Central and Latin America.
Cheers to Hope
hat could be better than a cold winter night and a delicious glass of wine? How about knowing that proceeds from wine you’re drinking are helping to support the troops, end childhood hunger, fight Alzheimer’s, or so much more? Check out One Hope Wine. Fifty percent of profits and 100 percent of donations to OneHope Foundation go to partner charities.
Windows in need of some good treatment? Budget Blinds of Silver Spring is offering a 15 percent discount to DDG readers (that’s you!), as well as to non-profit organizations and associations, through March 15, 2015.
For Little Global Citizens
Alexandria-based Aloetree strives to fight child trafficking and encourage children to give of themselves. The adorable Square characters that appear on bright t-shirts and onesies share stories of doing good. Founder Anbinh Phan has partnered with Chab Dai, a Cambodian-founded nonprofit addressing human trafficking and exploitation.
A Joyful Lifestyle
TransElated is “a socially conscious fashion and lifestyle brand created to unite people.” The DC-based company uses recycled and organic products to design positive attire. TransElated has partnered with Kollegebound Learning to provide mentorship to children living in homeless shelters in the U.S. and abroad. TransElated also donates a portion of proceeds to charities including Water.org, Scholarship America and Keep A Child Alive. Find TransElated products at the Fenton Street Market Holidaze through Dec. 23.
You’ve seen the bumper stickers. Yes, those ones, with multiple religious symbols. But do you know what they’re about? Coexist goes beyond the bumper sticker to raise funds for communities with a history of conflict. Coexist creates working environments where those who have been at opposition work together. Profits from Fair Trade coffee grown in Uganda go to local schools. Profits from clothing go toward Indian community schools.
Give the Gift of Laughter
It might be the most wonderful time of the year, but the holiday season can also be stressful or lonely for a lot of people. We agree with the adage that laughter is the best medicine, which is why we were thrilled to find Jason Weems. A kindergarten teacher by day, comedian by night, Jason is guaranteed to give you belly laughs, even if you're in way better shape than Santa. Check out his store now for discounted apparel and DVD's.
We all want to do good, right? But not all of us have the time to volunteer at our local charity. If you’re like me, you’re a broke college student. You barely have the funds to eat anything other than ramen every night let alone make a donation.
Fortunately, in the digital age we live in, there are a lot of apps that can help you do good, you guessed it, digitally! That means you can do good in your pajamas or during the bathroom breaks in between meetings and classes.
What you should be extra excited about is that many of these companies even have corporate sponsors that agree to make monetary donations for you.
Here are a few apps that will help you do good, feel good, and (hopefully) eat good.
Want to make sure you’re being socially responsible? This is the app for you. Good Guide lets you search for, scan, and browse through products that are healthy, green and socially responsible. Good Guide scientists rate products and companies on a 0 - 10 scale for their health, environmental and social impact. Now you can rest assured that your Good Guide- approved toothpaste is keeping your teeth and your conscience clean.
Are you a selfie queen? We’ve found the do-good app for you. With Fotition, you can support different campaigns by participating in fun photo challenges! For each fote you make, brands donate real dollars to the cause of your choice. Your fote also get special filters placed over it, so when you share the photo on social media you’re helping spread awareness for a great cause. Use those selfie skills for good and download the app today!
If you’re all about the foodstagram, look no further than Feedie. Snap a photo of your meal at any of the participating restaurants, and that restaurant will donate a meal to The Lunchbox Fund, a non-profit organization that provides daily meals for disadvantaged school children in South Africa. Talk about having your cake and eating it, too.
There really are so many benefits to living an eco-friendly lifestyle, and Recyclebank knows it! With this app your green deeds can get you great deals at stores and businesses around you. Completing an interactive feature (i.e. taking a quiz or reading a slide-show) that gives your tips on how to be eco-friendly earns you points. These points can then be exchanged for coupons and discount deals! With Recyclebank, living green keeps more green in your wallet.
Alright….so technically this isn’t an app, but I promise you can still use your phone -- sort of. The UNICEF Tap Project challenges you to go a few minutes without your phone. For every 5 minutes you spend away from your phone, UNICEF’s sponsors donate one day of clean water to a child in need. To help make an impact & give your texting fingers a break, go to uniceftapproject.org on your phone’s web browser.
About the Author: Alex Lacson is a DDG intern and senior at American University.
This is a picture of me and my sister with our grandfather in 1988. His name was Dr. Marvin Arnold Jolson. Everyone called him Marv, or M.A. We called him Poppop.
Marv was an extraordinary man, as average men go. He was an admired professor of business and marketing at the University of Maryland, having received a PhD at age 47. He'd moved from being a door-to-door encyclopedia salesman to a senior vice president at Encyclopaedia Brittanica, and was named the inaugural winner of a lifetime achievement award from the American Marketing Association.
In his personal life, he was an avid golfer, world traveler and Orioles fan. He was also a devoted husband, father and grandfather. When I was small, he would take me for walks and play a game called "Candy Store." The rules were pretty simple: I was the proprietress of a candy store. He was my customer. I'm guessing it was a lesson in entrepreneurship cloaked in play and sugar addiction. He taught me how to drive when I too young to be driving. Poppop was a hero to his grandchildren, children, nieces and nephews.
Parkinson's disease changed him. Once active, simple movements became challenging, then difficult, then almost impossible. I had to tap each of his legs to encourage him to shuffle his feet an inch forward. His brilliant mind was struck by Parkinson's dementia. He couldn't remember things. He was no longer able to play golf, to drive, to teach. A proud, capable man, he was no longer able to care for himself.
Parkinson's took its toll on my family as well. My grandmother was never the same after he got sick, and she was worse after he died in 2001. Parkinson's can rob a person of body and mind, and can exhaust his family.
At present, there's no cure, no way to reverse the progression of symptoms, and no real way to prevent it. Research can help that. And in the meanwhile, advocacy and resources like the Parkinson's Disease Foundation and the Michael J. Fox Foundation provide support for Parkinson's patients and their families.
About the Author: Holly Leber is the content & communications director for Do Good LLC.
In March 2016, in celebration of Women's History Month, we put out a call for nominees to our #GirlsWhoDoGood award. A girl who does good is a woman who demonstrates dedication to serving others, whether in her professional work, as a volunteer for a charitable organization, or simply as someone who makes it her personal mission to be kind to others, and to never treat anyone as 'less than'. In essence, she is a lady who demonstrates the #dogoodfeelgood spirit.
Thank you to everyone who submitted heartfelt and impassioned testimonials of the #GirlsWhoDoGood you know! Meet the ladies we've selected:
Nominated by both her mother and her husband, Melissa Sullivan has dedicated herself to helping underserved individuals in DC for nearly a decade. She has mentored first generation Latina-American college students, served homeless individuals at So Others Might Eat, and has passionately advocated for the spouses, caregivers and veterans of the U.S. Armed Forces through her work as a volunteer and fundraiser for Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors (TAPS), the Honor Flight Network, and the Armed Forces Retirement Home (AFRH). "Simply put," said her husband, "Melissa is selfless in her pursuit of service. Melissa is committed to going the extra mile, if it means she is able to assist someone in need."
Sharnikya Howard brings passion and drive to her work as a volunteer for Calvary Women's Services. "Many women at Calvary have lost their sense of confidence in the midst of the trauma of homelessness. When Sharnikya comes to Calvary, she greets women as equals, laughs with them, embraces them, and creates an environment where they can relax and feel more like themselves," wrote Amanda Griesser, communications associate at Calvary. By organizing activities such as a spa day and a Valentine's dinner hosted by some of DC's star chefs, Sharnikya shows the women at Calvary that they are worthy of feeling beautiful and special.
Kate Glantz is the founder of Heartful.ly, an online gift registry for good. Instead of registering for candlesticks and gravy boats, couples raise awareness and money for a cause or development project that's important to them. Celebrants gift the cost of specific items, such as $60 for a semester of health care for a student in Tanzania, where Kate served as a Peace Corps volunteer. She was inspired by witnessing how members of a poor community celebrate life, welcoming even strangers to wedding celebrations, according to the Heartful.ly website.
"Kate’s unwavering drive and genuine desire to do good and dedication to the cause sets her apart," said Kyle Freudenberg. "Her do good spirit is engulfing."
In 2010, accountant and businesswoman Veronica Eyenga founded My Girlfriend's House, a mentoring program designed to serve and empower underserved young ladies in the DC area. "The mentoring program has grown and is doing amazing things in the community," said nominator Marcelle Green. "I think what Ms. Veronica has done is phenomenal. Some of us talk about doing good, but Ms. Veronica embodies this each day as she selflessly continues to give of herself and her money." Amazing things include organizing a spring break college tour, renovating communal spaces in shelters, and helping girls develop self-confidence and leadership skills.
Stephanie Bailey, program coordination intern at Access Youth, describes Israela Brill-Cass as a "living embodiment of the power of following your dreams and encouraging others to do the same." A professor of conflict resolution at Emerson College in Boston, Israela has dedicated herself to following her passions and teaching others to advocate for themselves. She is the founder of fixeerrr, a platform that teaches people to navigate difficult conversations from salary negotiation to resolving workplace conflict. "She is the first person I go to when I need advice, and also the first person I go to when I have good news," Stephanie, a recent Emerson graduate and former student of Brill-Cass, said.
It's Women's History Month! Nominate a lady you know who embodies the #dogoodfeelgood spirit. Tell us how she's a girl who incorporates kindness, giving and good-doing into her daily life. We'll choose five women to feature. Share this post on social media and hashtag it #girlswhodogood.
This is Scott Kelly. He’s the first American astronaut to complete a 340 day mission in space. (You can watch the events of his return on the “Return to Earth” story on Snapchat!).
Kelly, along with Russian cosmonaut Mikhail Korniyenko, was sent to space nearly a year ago to help researchers collect data vital to the future of human exploration of our solar system, and determine the effects that outer space has on the human body. This information is particularly important when you consider the recent efforts to establish the first human settlement on Mars.
USA Today reported that Kelly has grown two inches since being in space. This change, however, is temporary. As his body readjusts to the gravity pull on Earth, Kelly’s spine will contract to its original height.
In an interview with CNN, Kelly said that he became an environmentalist during his time in space. “There are parts of the Earth that are covered with pollution all the time. I saw weather that was unexpected. Storms bigger than we've seen in the past. This is a human effect. This is not a natural phenomenon.”
There really is so much that space travel can do to help us learn about ourselves, our planet and everything that surrounds it. Even if you’re not planning to become an astronaut anytime soon, there are still ways you can contribute to the exploration of the final frontier.
Buzz Aldrin’s ShareSpace Foundation is a nonprofit organization that inspires children to realize their passion for Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) by designing and sharing activities and curriculums with schools and museums across the nation.
Want to support STEM education and future astronauts? You can do just that by making a donation to this great organization or by purchasing some snazzy new merchandise from their store.
About the Author: Alessandra “Alex” Lacson is a senior at American University. An island girl at heart, Alex prefers warm weather, but is always down to build a snowman. She’s passionate about LGBTQ rights, feminism and racial equality, and is a huge fan of the Chipotle burrito bowl. Alex is an intern with the Daily Do Good.
Or fashionisto? What's the way to say a dude who loves clothes? The Beau Brummell? Anyway, your stylin' folks...Read More
DC-based Bazaar Spices creates handcrafted spice blends. In addition to being a part of the local food scene and supporting the cultural culinary education, the company owners make regular contributions to local arts organizations.
Pennsylvania-based Riverside Design Groups created Plates With Purpose to support a variety of nonprofit organizations while bringing beauty to the table.
Theo Chocolate, the only fair trade chocolate producers in the U.S., partners with World Bicycle Relief and Eastern Congo Initiative to support economic and educational opportunities in Africa. The chocoholic in your life will love this Greetings Gift Collection, which includes bars, drinking chocolates and holiday flavored caramels.
A gift from the National Wildlife Federation supports efforts to protect wildlife and their habitats. We quite like this fox nightlight to add a warm glow on dark winter nights.
Recommended by local animal lovers and advocates, Big Bad Woof partners with animal rescue organizations, and sponsors clinics to help pet guardians learn about best care practices. Style your pet for cold weather.
A bird feeder from Farm Sanctuary will provide hours of peaceful entertainment for your favorite budding orinthologist.
Let’s adopt a polar bear. Oh, wait. No room. Are you just going to give up? Or will you adopt an endangered animal through World Wildlife Fund ? This fun and educational adoption kit includes a plush replica of the animal you’re helping to protect.