It’s our favorite time of year here at Change Gangs: Virtual Giving Circles. Every 3 months we find great charities to donate our pooled donations. Here are the charities we chose this time around.
People for Pets Chooses Marley’s Mutts
Marley’s Mutts rescues, rehabilitates, trains and re-homes death row dogs from Kern County’s high-kill animal shelters. The charity itself is based out of Tehachapi which is in the interior of California about 35 miles east-southeast of Bakersfield and west of Mojave. It is a low income area, but they have a big impact on their community due in part to the founder, Zach Skow, whose recovery from drug addiction gives him credibility and a connection with the community. They remove about 40 dogs per month from the area’s high kill shelters and adopting out around 30 of those each month. In the year since launching their low cost spay and neuter clinic, they have fixed over 1,500 dogs. The recent reports by the local animal shelter is showing declining euthanasia rates, and they believe that is due in large part to their low cost spay and neuter program.
Poverty Busters Chooses the Youth Empowerment Program
The Youth Empowerment Project engages underserved young people in New Orleans through community-based education, mentoring and employment readiness programs to help them develop skills and strengthen ties to family and community.
For example, in their Community Reintegration Program (CRP) they provide intensive, individualized case management and support to reintegrate juvenile offenders returning from detention facilities back into their community. The youth’s advocates have face to face contact with the youth three to five times per week at home, school and in the community. The advocates also speak regularly with the youths’ teachers, guardians and parole officers. YEP serves up to 120 youth per year through the Community Reintegration Program. According to an 2011 external evaluation of the program, 91percent of all Reintegration youth were not revoked and did not return to the OJJ system.
Veterans Givings Circle Chooses Intrepid Fallen Heroes Fund
The Intrepid Fallen Heroes Fund is helping military personnel suffering the effects of traumatic brain injury (TBI) and psychological health (PH) conditions by constructing a series of facilities, called “Intrepid Spirit” centers, in which these injuries can be diagnosed and treated.
Once each center is completed it is turned over to the local military base for operation, and from that point forward the military pays the costs for operating the center, including staffing, equipment and maintenance. The Fund does not provide any further contributions toward those centers. All money collected by the Intrepid Fallen Heroes Fund goes toward building future centers. 9 centers were planned. 5 are completed and the final 4 are scheduled to be completed by the end of 2016.