The easiest way to save three lives: the Red Cross

The American Red Cross “is the nation’s largest blood collection organization, supplying more than 40 percent of the blood and blood products used in our country.”

Giving blood with the Red Cross is the easiest way to save someone’s life! Every year 4 million people give 6.5 million units of blood to those who need it. Giving blood helps accident victims, cancer patients, surgical candidates, and children with blood disorders. 

If you want to give blood there are a few things you’ll need to do before you do so.

  1. Hydrate: you’ll want to be fully hydrated so there is less of a chance to pass out or get sick during the process
  2. Wear something comfortable: Wear clothing with sleeves that can easily be rolled up above the elbow.
  3. Maintain a healthy amount of iron before donating: include iron rich foods in your diet before donating

On the day of your donation:

  1. Bring an ID!
  2. Bring a friend!
  3. Relax!

There are countless stories on the Red Cross website telling of how they saved someone or were saved themself. One woman writes, “When our infant son was diagnosed with a life-threatening heart defect called Hypoplastic Left Heart Syndrome and rushed to intensive care, he needed blood during open-heart surgery. He couldn’t have survived without that blood supply. Many thoughts went through my mind those weeks in the hospital with him, and one of them was how grateful I am to those who donated blood and how much I’d previously taken the supply of it for granted. He is now six years old and, after two more reconstructive surgeries, is doing well and enjoying life. I now donate blood regularly, knowing the supply is not guaranteed, and that it is one way I can do something meaningful in life.”

If you want to learn more about giving blood and saving someone’s life check out The American Red Cross! There is a donation center close to you! 

What about you? Have you ever given blood? Have you ever considered giving blood?

The numerous children involved in the Syrian conflict

The Syrian War is getting significantly more deadly with the death toll of March at 6,005 men, women and children. According to CNN, the number of those who are killed will only continue to rise. The 6,005 of people killed in March does not include those in detention centers or those who have been kidnapped by rebels. The total number of deaths has been more than 70,000.

CNN states, “March’s documented death toll, the observatory says, includes 298 children, 291 women,1,486 rebel fighters and 1,464 government soldiers.” The war has been raging since March 2011, and many believe it is time to stop.

A small non profit organization called War Child located in UK is determined to help the suffering children. War Child has “… established six ‘Safe Spaces’ in schools in northern Lebanon and we’re supporting almost 300 children. Our trained counsellors will use art and music therapy as a means of helping the young children express their emotions in a healthy way.”

They want to “help 400 children enroll into schools in Lebanon so they don’t miss out on their education. We’ll be providing catch-up lessons to help them follow the local curriculum.

If and when it is safe enough for the children and their families to return to Syria, our projects will follow them back home and help them reintegrate back into their schools and communities.”

War Child is one of the few charities out there motivated to help the children in Syria and all the children who are hurting in the world. Get Involved with War Child and help save a child today! 

Have you heard of the Syrian Conflict? Did you know that the death toll was so high? What are some practical ways we can help as Americans? 

La Amistad, a non profit that mentors young Hispanic children

With all this talk of non profit organizations, you may be wondering if I am involved with one! I recently applied for an internship at a non profit called La Amistad. This particular organization exists “to support Latino and first-generation students and their families through tutoring, mentoring, and programming that promotes academic, physical, and personal growth.”

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After going to Mexico several times, I am ecstatic to be able to work with such an amazing non profit and being able to spread the love of Jesus to these precious children

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I first went to Mexico when I was in fifth grade, and the people, culture, community and language captivated me. I was able to return all throughout high school to a children’s home known as the City of Children. The kids there captured my heart, and I was able to return again and again. 

I am thrilled to be able to spread the love of our Savior to these kids who need some love and some friendship. 

 

What about you? What are your plans for the summer? Have you thought about interning with a non profit? Or have you done so in the past?

Get involved in a Nashville non profit: The Well Coffeehouse

ImageOne of my favorite local non profit organizations is the Well Coffeehouse, located on Richard Jones Road, about a mile from Lipscomb University. I discovered this place last semester and I immediately fell in love! The Well uses all fair-trade coffee, and even the furnishings are fair trade (which basically means not made by slaves). I interviewed the owner of the place, Rob Touchstone, last semester for a school project. I ended up coming back and back because of the atmosphere, awesome music, delicious coffee and the wonderful cause behind the coffeehouse. 

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Rob told me that he wanted to create a place where people can help others and talk to them about Jesus without the atmosphere feeling constricted or forced. The Well makes coffee, pays itsemployees and then gives all of their money to another local non profit called Blood:Water Mission

Blood:Water Mission exists to end the water and A.I.D.S. crisis in Africa. This organization was actually founded by Jars of Clay, a famous Christian band. 

So next time you’re looking for a great cup of coffee (I suggest the Mayan Mocha) and want to talk about Jesus AND help others at the same time, check out the Well Coffeehouse! Image

Have you ever been to the Well? Have you ever heard of the Well? What are some other creative ways to bring Church into a more relatable way?

Let’s end modern day slavery

One of my biggest passions in life has recently become helping eradicate modern day slavery. I believe that God has called me to help end this global epidemic. A practical way to begin ending slavery is raising awareness. Simply drawing a red X on your hand can get people talking. There are currently over 27 million slaves in the world. 

A few facts about human slavery

  • Humans can be sold for as little as $90
  • Slavery is present in 161 countries
  • 80% of people trafficked are women
  • Every 120 seconds a child/man/woman is sold into slavery
  • 50% of humans trafficked are children
  • There are currently 200,000 slaves working the US

Fortunately, there are quite a few non profit organizations that are active in ending slavery. The Passion Conferences have begun their own non profit called End it Movement. End It believes SLAVERY IS WRONG.

YOU KNOW IT. WE KNOW IT. AS A COUNTRY, WE’VE OFFICIALLY KNOWN IT SINCE 1863. BUT HERE’S SOMETHING YOU MIGHT NOT KNOW — SLAVERY STILL EXISTS. WE WANT EVERY MAN, WOMAN AND CHILD TO KNOW THAT THERE ARE 27 MILLION MEN, WOMEN AND CHILDREN, JUST LIKE THEM, LIVING IN THE SHADOWS. IN BROTHELS. IN FACTORIES. IN QUARRIES. WORKING AS SLAVES. IN 161 COUNTRIES. INCLUDING OUR OWN. WE ARE HERE TO SHINE A LIGHT ON SLAVERY. NO MORE BONDAGE. NO MORE SEX TRAFFICKING. NO MORE CHILD LABORERS. NO MORE, STARTING NOW.” 

Another non profit that helps end slavery is International Justice Mission which to

“brings rescue to victims of slavery, sexual exploitation and other forms of violent oppression. IJM lawyers, investigators and aftercare professionals work with local officials to secure immediate victim rescue and aftercare, to prosecute perpetrators and to ensure that public justice systems – police, courts and laws – effectively protect the poor.”

What about you? Have you heard of the 27 million slaves? Have you done anything to help or have you thought about volunteering with a non profit that deals with slavery? What are some practical ways as college students that we can end slavery?

Donating old items to Goodwill changes lives.

This past week I had the wonderful opportunity to go behind the scenes of a commercial shoot for Goodwill. DVL, a public relations and advertising company located here in Nashville] shot the commercial a few miles away from Lipscomb. Amelia Curtis’ step-father, Jimmy Chaffin, invited Amelia and I to come to the shoot. 

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“Goodwill works to enhance the dignity and quality of life of individuals and families by strengthening communities, eliminating barriers to opportunity, and helping people in need reach their full potential through learning and the power of work.” 

The commercial centers around an older gentlemen who has collected thousands of classical records. The man began to give the records to Goodwill, and Goodwill found out about the man. They decided to center on this particular man for their next commercial. 

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When you give it to Goodwill, you are providing someone a job. You are saving space in the landfills. You are boosting the economy. You are helping those who are less fortunate. 

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Giving old items to Goodwill is an easy way to help out, and is free and practically requires no time!

Seeing the way a commercial shot was an amazing experience, and it really puts it into perspective how much goes into a thirty-second slot on television. 

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Have you ever donated anything to Goodwill? What has been your favorite thing you’ve bought? Have you ever bought anything from Goodwill?