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Not for profit… but definitely for a good cause!

Got some spare cash and thinking of doing something good? There are millions of charities and not-for-profit organisations worldwide. But there are some which set themselves apart form the rest in terms of their creativity and the nature of the issues they are addressing.

Have a look at some of these I found:

1. Free Rice.com

Free Rice.com is an interactive way to feed the world’s hungry! Their website contains games in subject areas like English, Math, Science, Geography, History and so on. The idea of the site is to pick a subject and answer the questions correctly. For every correct answer, Free Rice.com will donate 10 grains of rice. The more you play (and obviously the more answers you get correct), more rice is donated (in countries where rice is a staple part of the diet, the average needed to feed a person is 400 grams (with 48 grains of rice per gram). This provides 2 meals per day).

The rice is donated by sponsors – when you enter a correct answer, you will see the sponsors at the bottom of your screen. This advertising pays for the rice., which gives Free Rice.com the ability to feed the hungry in countries like Cambodia, Haiti, Bangladesh, Uganda, Nepal and Myanmar.

Have a look at this video on The Freerice Phenomenon:

2. Kiva.org

Kiva - Loans that change lives

Kiva.org act as an intermediary – they lend your money to entrepreneurs from developing worlds (properly vetted, of course!) to enable them to start their own business.

All you need is a PayPal account and $25 – but you can donate as much as you want. Kiva.org will lend the money to the relevant person, and you will get periodic updates of their progress. They will then collect it back in small installments and re-pay you after a certain period of time.

3.Pajama Program

This will definitely touch your hearts! This children’s charity donates new warm pajamas and “comforting” books to children who need them. They work with various agencies to locate and send these children their pajamas. The program has since been expanded to assist needy children in Armenia, Brazil, South Afria, Uganda and Kenya.

4. Matter of Trust

Matter of Trust aims to “mimic” natural ecological cycles and use natural abundance and renewable resources to preserve the environment.

Dubbed “freecycling,” their first program was matching donations with donors of an unusual nature. Companies with a “natural surplus” of a particular item can donate it to another organisation to creatively solve a problem and eliminate their wastage. For example, the VeggieVan uses grease from fast-food restaurants to fuel its trips across the country for its educational programs.

Another example are oil Spill Hair Mats – apparently oils from your skin are naturally collected by your hair (hence the dreaded oily hair). Your hair can also absorb petroleum products spilled in tanker accidents – Matter of Trust has salons which help them collect hair clippings and ship them to their partner companies who make the mats. How? Check out this video:

5. The Smile Train

A cleft lip or palate is caused by abnormal facial development during gestation, and is a major problem in developing countries. Many of them cannot eat or speak properly, and are not allowed to attend school or hold a job. Cleft correction surgery is out of the question as they are too poor to pay for it.

The Smile Train empowers local doctors in developing countries to perform the surgery, and connects donors to doctors to help children in 78 of the world’s poorest countries.

Have a look at this trailer for “Smile Pinki” – it’s actually been on TV a few times!

So there you go – some of the more unique charities and not-for-profit organisations in the world today. Do you guys know of any more? It’s great to read abut such creativity ☺

NJ

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