Guest Author - Jeanette Stingley
Tax time is one time a year that most of us have a little extra money in our pockets. Some people spend their returns on big purchases such as a down payment on a car, paying off some debts, or starting a savings account for the family vacation later in the summer. Have you ever thought about giving just a little to help someone who is less fortunate then you or someone who is trying to start life anew after a rough patch in their life? Even if you can only contribute $25, this can make a huge difference in someone’s life. When I was striking out on my own after my abuser was put in jail, $25 is what I needed to keep the electric on for me and my kids. I turned to a local charity for assistance in paying this bill. Imagine the joy in my heart knowing that I would have electricity and natural gas to cook dinner and bathe the children for at least one more month!
If you look in your local telephone book, I am sure you will be able to find a charity that helps victims of domestic violence and rape. A phone call can help you get connected to the right people to make your donation. Donating to a national organization can help as well because they often distribute monies to smaller shelters and charities around the country. For a look at some resources in your state that may take donations, find you state here then see the resources I have listed for you state.
The following are organizations that always need help. See their websites for more information.
Battered Mothers Resource Fund, Inc.
“Battered Mothers Resource Fund, Inc. (BMRF) is a nonprofit tax-exempt organization dedicated to assisting battered mothers and their children find safe haven and locate community resources to help them make a fresh start. “
The National Domestic Violence Hotline
This is one of the first resources many victims turn to when in need of help. I have donated to them for several years now. This is also the first place most police officers will tell you to contact after they have made a visit to your home.
Family Violence Prevention Fund
This site focuses a lot on teaching boys about non-violence. I have learned a lot from looking at this site over the years!
Shelter Alliance Cellphone Program
This is one of many charities that collects used cell phones for victims and survivors of domestic violence. What they do is clear the phone’s memory completely, set up a cell phone service provider, and give the phone to a victim or survivor for emergency use or until they are established in a home of their own and able to obtain a home phone.
The National Coalition Against Domestic Violence & 1-800-CHARITY CARS
A charity that takes used cars and refurbishes it to give to victims and survivors of domestic violence. I am not 100% sure if this is one of those tax deductible donations.
And lastly I am listing the charity that helped me the most when I got away from my abuser. I had a domestic violence advocate by my side through the court process and child custody issues, I received counseling, referrals to other services for what they couldn’t help me with, etc.
If you ever question the legitimacy of a charity, you can check with the Better Business Bureau. Did a charity help you? What was your experience like? Share your thoughts in the forum!