CAUSES TO SUPPORT // MEMORIAL DAY EDITION

While I do not support the idea of war, I appreciate all the men and women who really have sacrificed so much for their country and all of us.  Not only do they put their lives on the line, they leave their families and loved ones behind, have to live in a completely foreign country, and experience physical, emotional, and mental hardships.  They truly are brave and incredible individuals.

While we BBQ and hang out with friends and family and enjoy a day off this Memorial Day holiday, let’s stop to remember and honor all of the fallen soldiers that are no longer with us physically but are remembered in our hearts.  Let’s honor them and thank them by supporting the servicemen and women and Vets who are still with us.

Here are a few great organizations that help in different but all very important ways.  Round up some buddies tomorrow at that party or gathering you are attending and choose a cause to support together in honor of all the men and women who have served this country!

The G.I. Go Fund

                The GI Go Fund Logo

I first heard about The G.I. Go Fund on this episode of Secret Millionaire (you can also watch clips on their about page).  The G.I. Go Fund, based in NJ, provides assistance to all military veterans, with a focus on veterans from Iraq and Afghanistan, by helping them find employment, access housing, and secure their educational and health benefits.

The GI Go Fund has created a model for providing unparalleled support to our military veterans, leading the way with innovative services for veterans to help them with employment, homelessness, and connecting to their benefits. In each area, we have established the blueprint for how veterans should be treated and assisted when they return home, and we are now expanding our innovative methods to major cities throughout the country to provide them with the support they need for them and their families.

Learning about The G.I. Go Fund really made me realize how many Veterans come home from fighting wars for this country only to become homeless due to financial emergencies / issues, PTSD, and lack of support.  We cannot let this happen after all that they have done.  Learn about how you can get involved here or make a monetary donation here to support their work.

PS: I LOVE Secret Millionaire, it makes me cry every time and I always learn of amazing non-profits and the important work they do.  You can find the show on Hulu.

Dignity U Wear

Dignity U Wear Logo

How many times have you looked at a closet full of clothes and thought, I have nothing to wear!  I know it’s something I do pretty often, but I try to catch myself and be grateful that I have clothes to wear at all.  Many people don’t have the luxury of having that complaint.

Dignity U Wear’s goal is to positively impact the lives of children and their families in need by providing brand new clothing.  I really love what Dignity U Wear is doing– clothes can make a huge difference, not only by physically covering you, but giving you pride in your appearance which can help an individual gain confidence.  I also like that they are providing brand new clothes– just because someone is in need doesn’t mean they don’t deserve something new and unused.

They have two programs for Veterans, Suits for Soldiers and The Homeless Veterans Program.  Check out their infographic on how this organization works and learn more on how to give here.  Maybe every time we decide to go shopping, we put some aside to donate to DUW, a little bit can eventually add up to a lot and help to make a difference.

Dignity U Wear Graphic

 

The Wounded Warrior Project

I’ve definitely heard of The Wounded Warrior Project but had never checked out their site or find out more info on what they do, but I am glad I finally did.  The WWP serves veterans and service members who incurred a physical or mental injury, illness, or wound, co-incident to their military service on or after September 11, 2001 and their families.  I can’t imagine what it is like to return home from a war with PTSD and then also be physically injured.

The Wounded Warrior Project takes a holistic approach when serving warriors and their families to nurture the mind and body, and encourage economic empowerment and engagement. Through a high-touch and interactive approach, WWP hopes to foster the most successful, well-adjusted generation of wounded service members in our nation’s history.

There are lots of great ways you can help support WWP.  You can make a donation, shop, host an event, or participate in one of the many events that benefit WWP which may be something you wanted to try out anyway (such as Tough Mudder)!  Find out more on their Give Back page.

Hope this gives you some inspiration for giving back this Memorial Day!
Have a good Monday!

CAUSES TO SUPPORT // FREELY IN HOPE

Eunice

Eunice In Class

I’d like to introduce you to 24 year old Eunice.

She is resilience, she is hope, she is determination, and she is strength.

She is a student, a mother, and a survivor.

Eunice was raped, became pregnant, and has overcome many incredibly difficult hardships in her life. While she has been through terrible things, it is her courage and inspiring story that deeply touches me.  Please visit Freely In Hope to read Eunice’s story, I cannot do it justice by summing it up.

With the support of Freely In Hope, a non-profit working in Kenya to help fight against the issues oppressing women such as sexual abuse, lack of educational opportunities, and forced labor, Eunice and women like her are able to pursue their education, achieve their goals, and secure a sustainable future for themselves and their families.  The work they do is truly life changing and life saving.  Many of these women have nowhere to go and nobody to turn to in a time when what they need most is support– emotionally, physically, and mentally.  Freely In Hope helps them get back on their feet by helping them find housing, providing medical care and counseling if needed, and giving them the opportunity to pursue their education which not only benefits the women themselves but their communities as well.

“I am a student and a proud mother of Eugene who is 4 years old. I’m currently studying at Kenya Polytechnic University so that I can finish my degree in Counseling Psychology. My hope is to counsel other young women who, like me, have experienced trauma. To other raped women—I encourage you not to abort. That child might be your source of happiness, just as my son is for me.” — Eunice

atiliay’s second Cause For A Cause edition, featuring floral cards, prints, and paper goods for Mother’s Day will be benefiting Freely In Hope and help mothers in Kenya who are survivors of sexual trauma receive an education.

Eunice + Eugene

49% of proceeds from all block print and watercolors will be donated as well as 5% from all other items from the floral collection.

6 prints will provide schools supplies and uniforms for high school.

100 prints will provide a year of high school education.

200 prints will provide a year of college education.

To purchase a card, please visit atiliay’s Etsy shop.

If you would like to learn more about Freely In Hope and support their work, please visit their website, www.FreelyInHope.org.

All photos courtesy of Freely In Hope