In looking over my past blog postings, it occurred to me that aside from my friends and family (and the occasional rant) I have been strictly talking about myself. So, I decided to share a little bit about some people out there who are doing great things for others. While it would be nearly impossible for me to pick my five favorite organizations, here are the five that regularly get some of my money (in alphabetical order). Check them out if you are interested.

1) AIDS Care Ocean State– Until dedicated medical professionals find a cure for this devastating disease; AIDS Care Ocean State and other organizations like it are providing support and care for people affected by HIV/AIDS. In addition to counseling, case management and medical care, they provide the only assisted living facility for people living with HIV/AIDS

2) JNF– My support of JNF is not about politics or religion or statehood. It is about planting trees in the desert and providing clean drinking water to people the who need it. It is about reminding myself not to take the green parks in my neighborhood or the water that comes from my tap for granted.

3) The Honor Flight Network– I first came to find out about this organization as I was waiting for a flight that had been delayed two hours in Baltimore. The terminal was full of World War II era veterans in matching t-shirts, some with war medals proudly pinned to their chest. I discovered that the Honor Flight Network is an organization that takes WWII veterans FREE of charge to Washington DC to view the new WWII monument. In addition to getting my money, this organization is presently getting some of my time (often more valuable). If the thought of proud men sitting together sharing stories of life, loss and their role fighting for our country is not enough to make you melt, all the volunteers wear shirts that say this: “We can’t all be hero’s. Some of us have to stand on the curb and clap as they go by.”

4) Sloan-Kettering– I have had the misfortune of spending time praying for two parents in the waiting room of Sloan-Kettering, and had the great fortune of having them both walk out. This is due in no small part to the phenomenal medical and support staff at this hospital which specializes in cancer care. From the moment you walk in, as a patient or a family member, you are greeted by warm and friendly faces and you know that they are doing everything they can for you and your family member.

5) Susan G. Komen – My first experience with the Susan G Komen foundation was four years ago, when I signed up and completed the 60 mile breast cancer walk. That was two blissful years before a dear friend of ours was diagnosed with stage 4 breast cancer. I know that life is never fair, but in this case it seemed particularly unfair. Susan G Komen is just one of the many organizations trying to find a cure for this vicious and brutal disease. As long as women every where suffer through chemo and radiation and wake up every morning to keep fighting, I will happily keep sending them my contribution.

These are just five organizations that are important to me. What is important to you? Who (besides the federal government) gets a part of your money?

Bloggers Note- As many of you know I presently work for a non profit organization and sit on the board of directors for another. I truly respect and support both missions, but I felt it would be too self serving to mention them.