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08 August 2018 @ 03:37 pm
Mostly About Charity  
Celebrity Death Watch: In a rather belated item, Richard Siegel, who was one of the co-editors of The Jewish Catalogue died in mid-July, but I missed seeing his obituary until this week. Tommy Peoples was a Donegal fiddler who played with The Bothy Band. Moshe Mizrahi was an Israeli film director, best known for Madame Rosa. Charlotte Rae was an actress, probably best known for her television roles on Diff’rent Strokes and The Facts of Life, but also significant for playing Mammy Yokum in the Broadway musical, Li’l Abner. Joel Robuchon was a French chef, who had the most Michelin stars of any restaurateur. Stan Mikita played hockey for the Chicago Blackhawks.

Avoiding Whininess: I wrote a rather kvetchy entry yesterday, mostly about the level of chaos in my life. I decided not to post it. Instead, I did get some decluttering done when I went home, including finding the most urgent thing I was looking for (new auto insurance card). And, more importantly, I figured out a way to sort some things out so I can tackle them in a more orderly manner. In other words, it is still chaos, but I feel more optimistic about coping with it.


Charities: A lot of people use social media (particularly facebook) to solicit charitable donations to celebrate their birthdays. I have reservations about this, as it seems both ineffective and pushy. But I will note that my birthday approacheth (as do the Jewish High Holidays, a traditional time for extra charity). So I thought I would recommend a few charities I think are worth giving to:

Mines Advisory Group – focused on removing unexploded ordnance in various countries. I have seen the good they have done in southeast Asia (Cambodia and Laos) and am particularly impressed with their efforts to educate children not to handle bombs they may find. They are also active in several countries in Africa. Not rated by Charity Navigator because much of their funding comes from government grants, versus individuals.


SOME – serves poverty and homelessness in Washington, D.C. Their services include affordable housing, as well as food, clothing, health care, job training, and addiction treatment. Rated 4 Star by Charity Navigator. You might also look for similar organizations where you live.


Women’s Prison Book Project – provides free reading materials to women and transgender persons in prison. Focus is on books with specifically relevant topics, including women’s health, law, and education. Not rated by Charity Navigator.


I also donate heavily to my alumni association, earmarked for scholarships. I also recommend donating to local arts organizations (e.g. I donate to Signature Theatre in Alexandria, Virginia). In general, it is better to donate larger amounts to fewer organizations, in my opinion.

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