I don’t want to be too picky when it comes to charity. After all, the important thing is that people give to those in need when they can. There shouldn’t be any parameters on generosity. That said, as I enter a more mature decade, I wanted to approach charity in a mature manner. I don’t want to spread myself too thin by giving a little here and a little there. I would rather take the time and choose one cause that I truly care about and devote all my efforts there. I am not rolling in cash so I can’t give a ton and I figure if I funnel all the energy to one place, it has a fighting chance of making more of an impact.
Since I was deciding to put all my eggs in one basket, I spent a lot of time choosing the right cause to champion. I wanted to pick something that was personal to me so I wouldn’t get bored with it. The idea is that this cause will receive my support for years to come so I shouldn’t just be “ho hum” about it. After much consideration, I have chosen the Joyful Heart Foundation.
Founded by Mariska Hargitay (yes, Olivia Benson from Law & Order: SVU), Joyful Heart Foundation aims to end sexual assault, domestic violence, and child abuse and to help victims heal. You can see some of their efforts embodied in the recent No More campaign, featuring NFL players in the wake of the Ray Rice scandal. I chose this charity for several reasons. First, I like the approach to healing, which goes beyond shelters and quick fixes. They offer retreats and a holistic approach that I think benefits survivors. Secondly, they work to stop abuse before it starts. By working to engage men in the fight and throwing much support behind No More, they are trying to make sure the community at large is aware of domestic abuse and its perils. Finally, it’s great to talk about this stuff, but there needs to be a change in policy as well. Joyful Heart Foundation is working to end the backlog of untested rape kits and advocated (successfully) for the reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA).
I was going to post this in October, which is Domestic Violence Month, but I thought today would be more appropriate because it’s Giving Tuesday. After two days devoted to consumerism and sales on Black Friday and Cyber Monday, this is a holiday that is the opposite of “me me me”.
The fight against domestic abuse is personal for me, but that’s a story for another day. The point is that I found something that is important to me, so much so that I want and need to help the cause with both my voice and my wallet. I would love if you found this cause important as well; however, I mostly care that you find something important enough to support.
Date of Completion: 12/2/14