No Kid Hungry This Summer

no kid hungry

Summer can be the hungriest time of year for many low-income families. When schools close, students no longer get school meals, and families struggle to put food on the table. Families struggling to make ends meet are forced to make unthinkable decisions between whether to buy a bag of groceries or pay rent, whether to pay the electric bill or buy enough food. This places a huge burden on children who deserve to be carefree and healthy in order to succeed and revel in their recess.

Luckily, No Kid Hungry has set out to bring some peace of mind to those kids. They have implemented a texting hotline that provides information about when and where free summer meals will be served in any given area. By texting “FOOD” to 877877, families in need will receive a message with the locations closest to them, serving free summer meals by providing their zip code. Spanish speakers are also able to text “COMIDA” to the same number. This information is also accessible by dialing the hunger hotline: 866-348-6479.

Last year, No Kid Hungry’s efforts served 177 million free meals at 47,816 sites across the U.S. through the Summer Food Service Program and they hope to reach many more this year. If your family does not need this service please consider sharing this with your friends and those in your community who may be struggling to put food on the table this summer. 

Share and Enjoy

How You Can Help Teachers {And Win A Chance To Meet Katy Perry}

Staples Katy Perry Print PSA_2

I’m proud to be partnering with Staples this back-to-school season to share about some great things they are doing in the community.

Did you know that most teachers spend their own money to equip their classrooms? The Education Market Association estimates that they spend more than $400 per year buying things they need. Staples wanted to do something to support teachers across America and help them as they start preparing for the upcoming school year so they made a $1 million donation to is a charity that has funded more than 700,000 classroom projects for teachers and has positively affected more than 18 million students across the country.

Katy Perry, who has previously supported Staples commitment to education in the past, has joined in to help support teachers across America. She says she believes in “education as a foundation for a great life” and wants “to make sure that students across the country are inspired by their teachers and afforded every opportunity to realize their dreams.” Perry knows “firsthand how desperately teachers need our support.”

In the video above, Katy Perry shares about an inspiring project she made as a 4th grader in music class that helped her express her dreams for her music career. She thinks about how she may not have had that chance to create her vision board if her teacher hadn’t had the materials and goes on to talk about the harsh reality that many teachers face on a daily basis, having to spend their own money to provide adequate supplies and equipment to students. Staples and Katy Perry hope their PSA will encourage viewers to help support teachers by making their own donations at a local Staples store or online at

Staples is also hosting a sweepstakes. Beginning June 26th through September 10th, fans who spend $25 or more in any Staples store will receive a unique entry code on their receipt to enter the sweepstakes online at One grand prize winner will win a $50,000 scholarship plus a trip for two to Los Angeles to meet superstar, Katy Perry. Four first prize winners and one guest each will also win air travel to Los Angeles, two nights stay and spending money to meet Katy Perry at the VIP Winners Celebration. (Visit for official rules.)

Teachers make such a difference in the lives of children and together we can help them make an even bigger difference this back-to-school season. By donating at a Staples store or online, anyone can help a classroom in need. Donations help teachers with books, art supplies, field trips, technology and other resources they need to help children learn.

Will you join me in supporting this important cause?


Share and Enjoy

How to Be a Benevolent Role Model: Raising Generous Kids Through Example

image 1

Disclosure: The following is a guest post.

Kind, compassionate, caring, charitable ― there are qualities every parent wants to see in his or her kid. However, most kids won’t naturally develop these altruistic traits without help from parents and guardians to develop charity.

Many experts ― let alone parents ― are divided when it comes to strategies for imbuing goodness and generosity in children. Financial gurus stress the importance of teaching financial literacy, which will inevitably allow kids to generate the resources to give back; meanwhile, psychologists value empathy-building conversations regarding other peoples’ wants, needs, and feelings. Yet, one method whose efficacy nearly every expert agrees upon is being a good role model.

Children naturally look to their parents as examples for how people should act, so behaving generously will encourage your kids to do so, as well. Here are some tips to help you display more benevolence in your daily life.

Demonstrate Emotional and Physical Self-Control

A famous study from Stanford University found that children who demonstrate willpower are destined to do better later in life. In the experiment, researchers gave kids between the ages of 3 and 5 the choice between a single treat now or a better treat later, if the kids were able to wait. The kids who demonstrated restraint and held out for the better treat were found in later studies to achieve higher academic degrees and live healthier lifestyles into adulthood.

When your kid screams, you probably want to scream, too. However, as a mature adult, you have the responsibility to demonstrate self-control to your children. Willpower takes many forms, from moderating your intake of junk foods to calming your emotions when they threaten to boil over. By refusing to succumb to your urges, you express to your children the necessity of inner strength and self-will, which are essential to becoming benevolent.

Respect Others and Command Respect in Return

Children learn respect directly from their parents, which means you must strive to demonstrate respect in every social interaction you have around your children. You should avoid casting negative judgement on others, especially those with fewer privileges than you and your family, and you should strive to use appropriate language in all social situations.

Just as important, you should expect everyone around you to treat you the same, which demonstrates the concept of self-respect. By being positive, polite, trusting, and caring to everyone you meet, you will teach your children how to be respectful ― and more importantly, that everyone deserves respect.

Be Willing to Part With Your Possessions for Others

It is only natural that children believe their needs and wants are most important; after all, their thoughts and emotions are the only ones they hear and feel. However, it is vital that as your kids get older, they recognize that those around them also have thoughts and emotions, and that sometimes, others’ needs and wants are more important.

Undoubtedly, you have boxes full of possessions stored in your home; you might even have large items taking up space, like an old vehicle that doesn’t run. When you have no use for an item, you should donate it to a worthy cause to show your children that owning things doesn’t increase happiness. Crucially, you must explain your choices to your children and telling them how your donation will benefit someone else.

Volunteer Your Time and Effort to Worthy Causes

More than your behavior and your donations, generosity is the action you take to make the world a better place for those around you. Volunteering in your community allows you to interact directly with those in need, which gives you (and your kids) a better sense of what more you could do to help others.

There are hundreds of ways to volunteer and demonstrate benevolence, from baking treats to sell for charity to visiting food banks and homeless shelters, so you have plenty of opportunities to learn all the ways people need help. From a young age, your children can accompany you on your volunteering adventures, so as they age, they will view volunteering as a normal activity.

Share and Enjoy

Gifts For Kids That Give Back

Screenshot 2016-05-04 at 1.07.21 PM

I love purchasing products that give back to charity and throughout the years some of my favorite items have been part of Kohl’s Cares® collections. I’m happy to be working with them to share about their newest collection that is here just in time for Summer.

Kohl’s Cares® donates 100 percent of the net profits of the collection to children’s health initiatives nationwide. The children’s books and soft toys are priced at just $5 each so the sets make great gifts. The summer collection of Kohl’s Cares books and plush is available now through June 26 at Kohl’s Stores nationwide and online at

The collection includes:

  • Penguin on Vacation book, Penguin’s Big Adventure book and penguin soft toy
  • Board Book Set and clownfish soft toy
  • Found book and bear soft toy
  • Stormy Night book and dinosaur soft toy

To date, Kohl’s has raised nearly $300 million through the Kohl’s Cares program which they have donated to hospitals across the country. The donations fund hospital outreach programs focused on children’s health initiatives and address the specific issues needed most in each hospital’s community. These tailored programs provide vital resources to families at no cost and include topics such as injury prevention, asthma awareness, dental care, and fitness.

Share and Enjoy

Ways To Help The Boys & Girls Clubs Of America This Season

(Disclosure: I participated in a campaign on behalf of Mom Central Consulting for Boys and Girls Clubs of America. I received a promotional item as a thank-you for participating.)

The Holiday season is in full-swing! We are all busy with parties, decorating, gift buying and everything else that goes along with it but I think it’s also important to give back during this time as well. There are many good causes to support but I wanted to share about one specifically today.

The Boys & Girls Clubs of America serve nearly 4 million youth, but millions more need the life-changing programs and positive guidance Clubs provide. You can help create Great Futures for kids by making a gift to Boys & Girls Clubs of America this holiday season. The easiest ways to support BGCA is to volunteer, donate or shop at a store that donates proceeds to them.

Other fun things you can do on the Holiday website include:

Isn’t that fun!? I especially love the tips they offer for parents on helping kids get in the giving spirit.



Share and Enjoy

Child Sponsorship Works

We sponsor a little girl through Compassion International named Rita. I found this infographic online and thought it was interesting so I wanted to share. Often times we think “I’m just one person, what can I do?” but we can make a big difference to a child.

Compassion International Child Sponsorship Works

Infographic from Compassion International.


Share and Enjoy

Join The Flash Flood For Good

flash flood for good

Everyone should have access to clean, drinkable water but they don’t. Unsafe drinking water is a struggle for 1 billion people worldwide. Water supplies are often contaminated with parasites and diseases, making diarrhea a leading cause of death among infants and children in the developing world. In fact, more than 2,000 children die every day from dirty water, more than malaria and HIV/AIDS combined.

World Vision is working to change this and there is a super easy FREE way you can help this month. I’m posting to urge you all to join me in the Flash Flood For Good. Through Flash Flood For Good we’re going to turn social currency into real currency to help clean water and save lives.

For 72 hours, starting September 24 at the Clinton Global Initiative Annual Meeting, World Vision will focus the world on clean water. If you add your Facebook and Twitter feeds to Flash Flood For Good, you’ll post together with World Vision and millions of others around the world. Hundreds of millions of people will see our message and can donate instantly. A $10 donation will give one child a year of clean water.

I hope you will join me! Find out more at

(Images and information courtesy of World Vision and Flash Flood For Good.)

Share and Enjoy

World Vision Experience: Kisongo Trek {Free Nationwide Tour}

world vision experience

I recently had the opportunity to check out the World Vision Experience tour bus when it stopped at my Church. It was just a short 15-30 minute experience but I really wanted to go on the bus as a family. We sponsor a little girl named Rita through Compassion International (another Christian ministry) and she also lives in Africa so I thought it would be great to show the boys how she may live. Images and visuals are 10x better than just words alone. I could never describe, in words, living arrangements or what her village is like in a way that they could understand because they live in a middle-class neighborhood in the United States. This bus really helped them experience life in Africa the best way possible until they can physically go visit the country.

Here’s what the website has to say about the experience:

Through Kisongo Trek, the newest World Vision Experience, you can “travel” to Babayetu’s home and hear the real-life story of how his village moved from poverty to hope with help from World Vision. This immersive experience brings the sights and sounds of Africa to life using innovative technology, state-of-the-art cinematography, and captivating imagery — all in the back of a mobile semi-truck. You’ll go on a bus ride down the roads of Tanzania, get an up-close glimpse of what it’s like to live in poverty, and discover proven solutions that help families build a better life. Kisongo Trek gives you and your entire community the opportunity to step into a world where poverty is in the past and children can look toward a bright future.

Find out where the bus will be next here.

Share and Enjoy

Hunger In America {And How We Can Help}

unilever cross off hunger

One in six Americans does not have access to enough food to sustain a healthy life.

One in six.

In America.

I’m not talking 3rd world countries here, I’m talking in this nation that I live in and most of you, my readers, live in as well. This country where myself and so many others go to our fridge, open it up, look upon all the food in it and close it declaring “there’s nothing to eat!”. What we really mean is there is nothing we feel like eating.

Never again.

Never again will I look into that fridge full of food and say I have nothing to eat because there are many people in my town, and in your town, that really don’t have anything to eat. They could only wish to have near the amount of food that I do.

When I think about how many go hungry every day it hurts me and I am moved to do something about it. Thankfully there are companies that want to do something about hunger, too. Unilever is one of those companies.

Unilever is committed to donating more than two million meals to families in need with Feeding America and every item on your shopping list counts.  Show your support by adding Unilever brands to your cart next time you shop.  Together we can help to Cross Off Hunger.

How will I show my support? By purchasing some of my favorite brands this season!

Ragu Sauce for pasta


Imperial Margarine for Santa’s cookies


Axe Shower Gels for stocking stuffers

Another way you and I can help those who are hungry is by learning more about food banks and providing items that they need. When I thought of food banks before I always assumed they only accepted food items but I recently learned that’s not the case. According to an article I read about the top 10 needs of food banks, personal care items and baby items are also greatly needed.

Volunteers at food banks and soup kitchens are needed as well, so that’s another way that you and I can make a difference and help cross off hunger.

What are your ideas to help those who are hungry?

(Disclosure: I am a member of the Collective Bias®  Social Fabric® Community.  This shop has been compensated as part of a social shopper insights study for Collective Bias™ and  Unilever  #CBias #SocialFabric #BetterTogether )

Share and Enjoy

Maternity Worldwide- Save A Life This Christmas

maternity worldwide


Having a baby should be a time of great joy and hope. But every year across the world 287,000 women die in pregnancy and childbirth. That’s one mother dying every 2 minutes, 800 each day. These women do not need to suffer and die; most lives could be saved relatively easily and cheaply. Many mothers die as a result of conditions which would be treated routinely in other parts of the world, for example complications from high blood pressure and hemorrhages at delivery.

This year for Christmas you can give the gift of life to a mother in sub Saharan Africa. For less than $25 you can sponsor a safe birth. Want to sponsor an emergency caesarean for a mother? You can do so for around $80. Wouldn’t that make a great gift for someone who has just given birth themselves or for the person who seems to have everything? You can find out more about Maternity Worldwide here.

(Disclosure: This is not a compensated post. I am a proud member of the Global Team of 200 which is a highly specialized group of members of Mom Bloggers for Social Good that concentrates on issues involving women and girls, children, world hunger and maternal health.)

Share and Enjoy

Giving Tuesday: 5 Unique No-Cost Ways To Give Back


World Homeless Day

Today has been designated as “Giving Tuesday“. It’s the Tuesday after two huge shopping days (Black Friday & Cyber Monday) and a day to give back to others. I’d like to share 5 creative ways that you can give back to others. These 5 ideas from Call 2 Recycle won’t cost you a penny but will greatly bless another.

1.       Offer a Veteran a Ride

The Disabled American Veterans’ Voluntary Services Program provides numerous opportunities for men and women of all ages to help make a difference in the lives of disabled veterans:

2.       Spend time at a Shelter

You don’t have to be an animal expert to help out at your community’s shelter. You just need to have the time and desire to lend a helping hand:

3.       Help safeguard the environment

It is as simple as recycling batteries. The kind that get recharged, like the ones in laptops and cell phones, contain mercury and lead, heavy metals that can contaminate the air, topsoil, and water if they’re tossed in the regular garbage.  Call2Recycle has partnered with major recycling facilities in the United States and Canada to process and reclaim materials from rechargeable batteries and cellphones. You can find a Call2Recycle recycling location here:

4.       Declutter and Donate

You might not think so, but you can donate your old running shoes (they’ll recycle them!), same with your old mattress, and much more:

5.       Offer to babysit for free, it could be a friend or relative

There are a few things you can do to help out families in your neighborhood and even your own that would be much appreciated:

Share and Enjoy

World Autism Awareness Day

The month of April is Autism Awareness Month and today, April 2nd, has been declared as World Autism Awareness Day. I will be wearing blue today as I join in on the Light It Up Blue Campaign.

What is autism? According to “Autism is a disorder of neural development characterized by impaired social interaction and communication, and by restricted and repetitive behavior. These signs all begin before a child is three years old. Autism affects information processing in the brain by altering how nerve cells and their synapses connect and organize; how this occurs is not well understood.”

What amazed me was reading how many children were affected by Autism. According to Autism Speaks- “one in every 110 children is diagnosed with autism, making it more common than childhood cancer, juvenile diabetes and pediatric AIDS combined.” Wow, and this site says that in the United States (where I live) the “current estimates” are that ” one out of 70 boys is diagnosed with autism“. That number seems so high to me and this website says that the number of children being diagnosed is growing each year!

So once I learned a little about what Autism was and how many of our children it’s affecting I wanted to know the warning signs of Autism. I found this list of “red flags” to look for. This site, and many other ones that I have looked at, suggest that if your baby shows a couple (or more) of these “signs” then you should take your child to the doctor for an evaluation.

I will do another post later this month about Autism and will hopefully have a special giveaway related to Autism then, too. As for now let’s all wear blue to raise awareness for this cause that is affecting more and more children every day.

Share and Enjoy

Earth Hour 2010

earth hour

Just wanted to remind everyone that tomorrow night the World will celebrate Earth Hour by “going dark” for one hour.

Here is the link to the US website with all the information: Earth Hour 2010.

Earth Hour Commercial:

Why Go Dark?:

Earth Hour 2009-Countries Around The World:

Are you celebrating Earth hour? Let me know in the comments. I’d love to know your reason for participating (or not participating). My family WILL be participating this year if we are home :)

Share and Enjoy