Yes, 2016 was a terrible year, but I’m not giving up and neither should you. There are still lots of good organizations out there doing vital work and they deserve our support. Herewith a few thoughts for those of you considering end-of-year charitable donations. I’m thinking about the following needs: strong and free press, refugees, climate science, agroecology, education, and women’s reproductive health. Below are eleven good outlets for your resources, ranked in no particular order.
1) Oxfam International
Oxfam is deeply involved helping refugees but they also do important advocacy and policy work.
2) American Refugee Committee
This is a local group to the Twin Cities that works internationally on refugee issues.
3) Groundswell International
One of my favorite NGOs working in partnership with local communities in the Global South on agroecological approaches to farming.
4) Africa is a Country
This is an alternative news source (the name is satirical) for those interested in Africa.
5) Planned Parenthood
Providing vital healthcare to women. This group will surely be under assault by the incoming administration.
6) National Public Radio
We need a strong, independent media. Donate to your local NPR affiliate. Mine is Minnesota Public Radio.
A good non-profit , local news source in Minnesota. If you’re not from Minnesota, you likely have something similar. As above, we need a strong, independent media.
8) The College or University of your choice
We need strong educational institutions now more than ever. Here I’ve got to mention Macalester College (my employer) and Carleton College (my alma mater).
9) Progressive religious organizations
One example is Catholic Charities’ Dorothy Day Center in downtown St. Paul. Lest we forget that there is a core social justice mission in many progressive religious traditions (something that is often lost or forgotten amidst the fundamentalist clamor).
An organization supporting a grass roots climate movement with attention to the realities of science and the principles of justice.
11) Friends of African Village Libraries
This group works with local communities in various African countries to create village libraries.
I am sure there are many other well deserving outlets, but that is all my addled brain has to offer for now (way too much grading for this professor at the end of the semester). Happy Holidays!