Giving Back, Part I: 4 Simple Ways To Support Oregon’s Kids This Holiday Season

Autumn maple leafAs we head into the Thanksgiving week, we’re reflecting on the many clients, partnerships, and community connections that have helped make 2015 a great year for the BSB re-launch!  A true highlight, no doubt, has been the opportunity to support and work with so many non-profits through client collaborations, community workshops, and through social media story-sharing.  We also enjoyed week celebrating the launch of  #OregoniansGive last week with a fun event hosted by
our friends at Impact Flow– along with Albina Community BankBuoy Beer Company, WhyIGiveand WVDO.  We came away so inspired to see so many diverse organizations doing great things for our community, and excited for the impact we can each have to help them in the year ahead.

And so…we’re pleased to share Part I of our Giving Back series, which offers some ideas on organizations we’re especially inspired by this holiday season for their great work supporting local kids and families.  Whether you can donate funds, do some hands-on volunteering, or simply help share their stories across your networks, below are 4 suggestions we hope you will strongly consider!. And stay tuned next week for Part 2 of this post for some terrific organizations serving the broader community needs, too!

1. HARPER’S PLAYGROUND: HELP MAKE PLAY ACCESSIbLE TO ALL!

harpers-playground-logoI’ve been a fan of Harper’s Playground since my first visit there last Spring with close family friends. This inclusive playground, located in North Portland, is truly changing the paradigm of play for children of all ages and abilities, and the broader community, too. Their  mission is to ensure that every playground is fully accessible to people of all abilities and all socioeconomic levels.  Why is this so important? Read more here. They are also working on building two new inclusive playgrounds in Portland—one at Gateway Park and one at Couch Park—and beginning to advise on projects elsewhere in the Pacific Northwest, too. Donor support, especially through this year’s Give!Guide, will help support these efforts and help Harper’s Playground to spread their message of inclusive, nature-based play far and wide to communities around the country. And, stay tuned for our more detailed Big smallTalk with this incredible team in December!

2. YELLOW SCOPE + GIrls Inc: DOUBLE YOUR IMPACT ON THE FUTURE OF GIRLS AND SCIENCE!

yellowscope-logoWe’re so thrilled to see one of our favorite locally-built brands, Yellow Scope Science Kits for Girls  partnering with a non-profit we love: Girls Inc.. Between now and #GivingTuesday, when you buy two Foundation Chemistry Kits, Yellow Scope will donate a kit to Girls Inc. of the Pacific Northwest. We love that Girls Inc. pairs girls with mentors to develop their skills and knowledge to set goals, overcome obstacles, and improve academic performance. What a great partnership!  And, it comes as no surprise to us that Yellow Scope has been selected by the Toy Industry Association as finalists for the 2016 Toy of the Year Awards. You can learn more about their incredible vision to expose girls to STEM in our recent Big smallTalk, and hope you’ll take a second to vote for them here. This is a true go-to gift for every future scientist on your list!

3. MAKE-A-WISH ORegon: DONATE MILES + HELP A DREAM TAKE FLIGHT!

Oregon-PMS293Looking for a unique and impactful way to give back ? We’re also big fans of the Make-a-Wish Foundation’s Wishes in Flight program; you can donate your airline miles to Make-A-Wish Oregon and help send local wish children to the destination of their dreams. There are more than 200 local children with life-threatening medical conditions who are waiting for their wishes to come true right now, and about 80 percent of those wishes will involve travel. Your donated miles will help Make-a-Wish Oregon grant wishes like learning to surf in Hawaii, seeing the “Lord of the Rings” movie set in New Zealand, visiting New York to watch a Broadway play, and collecting seashells in Sanibel Island, Florida. Once donated, your miles never expire and will go a long way in bringing hope, strength, and joy to kids in our community. Get more information on how you can make wishes take flight!

4. First Book Portland: WINE-ING FOR LITERACY, AND A LOT MORE!

First_Book_Portland_logo_whiteFirst Book is a national nonprofit dedicated to providing access to books for children in need. Locally, First Book Portland was formed in 1998 to serve children from low-income families in Multnomah, Washington, and Clackamas counties. Since then, their all-volunteer Portland team has provided more than 50,000 brand new books to programs in the tri-county area, an achievement made possible by generous support from Portland citizens, businesses, and foundations. The group’s largest annual fundraiser, Wine-ing for Literacy, falls on December 1 this year, making it a perfect way to celebrate Giving Tuesday.  Whether you attend the event and bid in the silent auction or make a donation from the comfort of your armchair, every dollar you donate goes directly to the purchase of books.

GET MORE RESOURCES + SHARE SUGGESTED ORGANIZATIONS!

Stay tuned post-Thanksgiving  for Part 2. In the meantime, the Impact Flow team has rounded chat-bubblesup a great toolkit/guide for businesses looking to get involved in #GivingTuesday. Check it out here!  And I’d love to hear about any local groups you feel passionate about, too. What little-known organizations should be on our radar, this holiday season or in the year ahead? I invite you to get in touch so we can help share their stories, too.  Happy Thanksgiving, all!

 

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