If you still have money left over once your holiday shopping is done, please consider making a donation to a worthy cause that benefits women and girls.
Since 1998 Girls Write Now has provided guidance, support, and opportunities for New York City’s high school girls to develop their creative, independent voices, explore careers in professional writing, and learn how to make healthy choices in school, career, and life. One-on-one mentoring relationships are at the heart of Girls Write Now; mentors act as real-life examples for their mentees of who they can be as women, as writers, and as professionals.
Women For Women provides direct financial and emotional support to women survivors of war. Their year-long program of direct aid, rights education, job skills training, and small business development helps to move women toward economic self-sufficiency. Make a simple donation or sign up for the Sponsorship Program. Sponsors pledge to contribute $27 per month to support one individual woman in Women For Women’s year long program. That support provides the tools and resources a woman needs to rebuild her life after war and help her to obtain basic necessities for her family. Sponsors are asked to write letters to their sisters, as well.
Bans on Medicaid funding for abortion deny the right to abortion to thousands of women and most severely affect poor women, women of color, and young women. The National Network of Abortion Funds is a network of over 100 grassroots groups in more than 40 states that help women pay for abortion services.
At the invitation of local women’s organizations, Women on Waves sails to countries where abortion is illegal and provides early medical abortions on a ship.
The premiere online sexuality resource for young people, Scarleteen provides free, inclusive, comprehensive, positive sex education. Scarleteen does not receive any federal, state or local funding. In order to meet its goals for 2010 and beyond, Scarleteen is asking for donations from its supporters. Please consider giving whatever you can so Scarleteen can continue doing such vitally important work!
An obstetric fistula develops over many days of obstructed labor, when the pressure of the baby’s head against the mother’s pelvis cuts off blood supply to delicate tissues in the region. The dead tissue falls away and the woman is left with a hole (fistula) between her vagina and her bladder and sometimes between her vagina and rectum. This hole results in permanent incontinence of urine and/or feces. In many developing countries where there are few hospitals, few doctors, and poor transportation systems, obstructed labor often results in death of the mother. When a woman survives, there is a good change she will develop fistula. The Fistula Foundation raises awareness of and funding for fistula repair, prevention, and educational programs worldwide. If her surgery is performed by a skilled surgeon, a fistula patient has a good chance of returning to a normal life with full control of her bodily functions. A donation to the Fistula Foundation directly assists in restoring health and dignity to women suffering from fistulas.
And of course, there is always your local Planned Parenthood, rape crisis center or women’s shelter. If you have other ideas, please leave them in the comments. Happy holidays!