Altruism Today

Dog Bless You

June 2nd, 2012  |  Source: Facebook

For every 1,000 "likes" to this page through July 4th, we will donate a service dog to a war veteran!


Dog Bless You: To Champion the Selfless Acts of Animals. 

A message from Charlie Annenberg, founder of and Dog Bless You: 

"The mission of is to champion the selfless acts of others, to create a portal into the soul of humanity and to inspire life long learning. What is the easiest way to do this? Through dogs - they see our souls like no other. That is why as we build Dog Bless You, I believe that its mission should be to champion the selfless acts of animals." 

Please feel free to share your stories about how your dog uplifts the human spirit. 

Dog Bless You. 

Charlie and Lucky

Multi-foundation effort generates $3.5 million for PBS NEWSHOUR

May 30th, 2012  |  Source: PBS

The participants in the initiative are Carnegie Corporation of New York, the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, The Rockefeller Foundation, and the David and Lucile Packard Foundation.

“For many television stations, advertisers are a lifeline.  But for PBS, viewers are the lifeline,” explained Vartan Gregorian, President of Carnegie Corporation of New York.  

“Today, as harsh economic realities continue to take a toll both on the quality and quantity of news sources, the NewsHour remains dedicated to the highest standards of journalism around both national and global issues and events.  Carnegie Corporation, which helped to create public television, is proud to continue its tradition of supporting excellence in the public realm by joining with other foundations in funding the invaluable and irreplaceable NewsHour.”

More here:

One Million E-Books Headed to Africa With FC Barcelona’s Help

May 25th, 2012  |  Source: Mashable

Non-profit Worldreader kicked off a campaign Thursday aiming to put 1 million e-books in the hands of children across the planet, with a little help from players on one of the world’s most popular sports teams.

This may sound like a crazy goal, considering the widespread absence of books from African classrooms, but the organization is aleady well on its way.

So far, Worldreaderhas donated 100,000 books to 1,000 students in Ghana, Kenya and Uganda.

The non-profit now wants to expand its reach throughout sub-Saharan Africa and has enlisted some capable help — the world-renowned players on FC Barcelona (Barça).

Read on here:

From Tweet to Street: Anti-Poverty Campaign Takes Supporters' Messages to Camp David

May 18th, 2012  |  Source:

Political magnates on their way to the G8 summit at Camp David near Thurmont, Maryland today may barely notice the scenery —mostly freshly planted fields and historic homes—of a small town on a spring day.

Yet there's one attraction designed to catch their eye: an activist "chalkbot" whose golden-hued messages about taking action on global poverty now coat the pavement leading to the presidential retreat and leaving from the White House. 

The "Street Tweeter" is the work of anti-poverty nonprofit ONE. A "hydraulic robot" towed by a pickup truck, the machine culls Twitter for messages that mention the handle @ONEStreetTweet, and uses 80 jets full of nontoxic paint to take the text to the streets. ONE is asking its supporters to send along 40-character notes encouraging the G8 to take a stand on poverty in Africa and throughout the developing world. 

“We urge the G8 to create a new global framework for agriculture and nutrition, centered on investment in smart, country-owned plans,” Michael Elliott, ONE's president and CEO, said in a press release for the project. Elliot says Africa is positioned to become a leader in global agriculture if it gets the "smart and highly targeted aid" and investmentsfrom African governments and the private sector it needs. 

Smile Train Achieves Milestone of 750,000 Free Cleft Surgeries

May 18th, 2012  |  Source:

Smile Train is the world's largest cleft charity, with over 2,200 partner surgeons operating in over 1,100 partner hospitals across 76 countries.

It has a unique model of empowering local medical professionals to provide free, safe and quality corrective cleft surgery.  This work provides a child with a second chance at life through surgery that costs as little as $250.

Founded in 1999, Smile Train provides free cleft lip and palate surgery to children from poor families that give a child not just a new smile, but also a chance at a new life.

For additional information, please visit

10,000 Comforters to be Donated to US Military Families

May 16th, 2012  |  Source: The Company Store

The Company Store®,one of America’s largest home décor and bedding companies for more than 100 years, is proud to announce the launch of its “Kids Design Contest” in which children nationwide will have the opportunity to design comforters to be donated to military families.

This year, The Company Store has partnered with Operation Homefront, an organization that provides emergency financial and other assistance to the families of the United States’ service members and wounded veterans, to give away more than 10,000 comforters to military families in need across the nation.

Last year, First Lady Michelle Obama and Dr. Jill Biden launched the Joining Forces initiative to mobilize all Americans to 'step up and do what they do best’ to support veterans, service members and their families. Roughly 75% of the military families served by Operation Homefront live at an income level 80% below the median income for the communities in which they reside.

“The Kids Design Contest is a way for a child’s creativity to brighten the spirits of thousands of military families facing difficult times,” said The Company Store Director of Marketing Karen Feldman. “We couldn’t think of a better way to engage children to support these incredible servicemen and women by giving them the comfort and care that they so deserve.”

The contest begins on Memorial Day Weekend May 28, 2012 and runs through June 22, 2012. Voting will take place on Facebook from June 23-30, 2012 and the winner will be announced on the 4th of July 2012. The winning design will be made into thousands of comforters and will be donated to the families of servicemen and women around the nation.

In addition to the creation of the winning comforter, the three “designers” with the most votes on Facebook will also win a gift card as a token of The Company Store’s appreciation.  Those interested in participating can get more information by going to and clicking on the tab “Kids Design Contest” to view the official rules. 

MIT and Harvard form $60 Million Venture for Online Courses

May 2nd, 2012  |  Source: Bloomberg


Harvard University will team with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology to offer online courses from their faculties to students around the world that will include quizzes and certificates upon completion.

The nonprofit venture, called EdX, will be funded with $30 million from each of the universities and will begin offering courses this year, the Cambridge, Massachusetts-based schools said today in a statement.

MIT, which has put course material online for a decade, in February introduced MITx, an online program of courses with homework, exams and discussion forums. The new venture with Harvard will be based on MITx’s technology platform, according to the statement. Other universities may join them in offering courses, the schools said.

“EdX gives Harvard and MIT an unprecedented opportunity to dramatically extend our collective reach,” Harvard President Drew Faust said in the statement.

EdX will be run by Anant Agarwal, director of MIT’s Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory, who led the development of MITx.

April Is National Greyhound Adoption Month

April 12th, 2012  |  Source: For the love of dog tales


Tens of thousands of greyhounds are bred every year for the 27 racetracks in the United States, according to the U.S. Humane Society.

They’re intentionally over-bred so there will be ample to replace old and underperforming greyhounds at the tracks. Each year, thousands of these retired dogs do not find a home; they are killed.

April is National Greyhound Adoption Month, a reminder for animal lovers that there is an industry that “throws away dogs like they are defective products,” says retired police officer Irvin Cannon, a dog lover whose new book, For the Love of Dog Tales (, gives voice to man’s best friend.

“These dogs have feelings and intelligence, but they are treated like racing slaves so people can gamble,” Cannon says. “Who is the winner in this scenario?”

The Humane Society estimates thousands of retired racing dogs are put to death every year. Rabbits are another industry victim; thousands are maimed or killed in the race-training process.

ALEC’s Push for “Stand Your Ground” Laws Sends Coca-Cola Running

April 6th, 2012  |  Source: NPQ


Source: Florida Independent

The tragic death of Trayvon Martin has spurred a reexamination of “stand your ground” laws and the national nonprofit organization promoting them—the conservative American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC). Coca-Cola has ended its partnership with ALEC and ColorOfChange—an organizing group led by former Obama administration official Van Jones—is claiming credit, though the group’s campaign target has more to do with ALEC’s support of voter ID laws (which NPQ has previously noted). ColorOfChange is also claiming that Coke’s competitor, PepsiCo, has also dropped its partnership with ALEC.

ALEC works very closely with corporations and state legislators to draft model legislation for state government enactment. The official board of directors of ALEC is comprised of state legislators, but ALEC also has a corporate board—called its “private enterprise board”—that clearly ensures that corporate messages and priorities make it into ALEC’s legislative initiatives.  If one wants to get a sense of the conservative political activism of the U.S. corporate sector, the board membership gives you some taste of which corporations are most invested in guiding state legislatures toward corporate-friendly policies.  Some of the corporate board members have well recognized corporate philanthropic track records, including State Farm, ExxonMobil, Kraft Foods, Pfizer, Reed Elsevier, Bayer, Wal-Mart, AT&T, Altria, UPS, and, not surprisingly, Koch Industries.

Some groups have long challenged ALEC as a front for corporate interests that lacks the bona fides that would justify its 501(c)(3) public charity status. ALEC’s reach into conservative political arenas such as shoot-first laws and laws that might suppress the vote may be just the non-corporate agenda items to help ALEC resist attacks on its (c)(3) status—but exactly the non-corporate avenues to drive ALEC’s corporate supporters, like Kraft, Coke and Pepsi, away from the organization.

Social Media for Social Good

March 19th, 2012  |  Source: Nonprofitorgs

Recommended reading:

Based on more than 15 years of experience in nonprofit communications and 15,000+ hours spent utilizing social and mobile media, Social Media for Social Good: A How-To Guide for Nonprofits, written by Heather Mansfield and published by McGraw-Hill, is a comprehensive 268-page hardcover book packed with more than 100 best practices covering Web 1.0, Web 2.0, and Web 3.0 nonprofit communications and fundraising.

From building your e-newsletter list to finding your “Twitter voice” to launching a mobile website and texting campaign on a small budget, this guide presents a step-by-step strategic plan for launching and maintaining successful social media and mobile marketing campaigns.

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