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The three of us who make up the writing and editing team, and many if not all of us at Jolkona, were brought into the world safely without any major set backs.

However, this is not the case for many women and children across the globe. One of our partners is hosting a project which assists those who face problems within the labor process in Palestine, and in honor of them and our 10 Days of Giving, the writing and editing team would like to highlight and support their cause.

The Scoop

Because of recent conflict that still continues today, the Israeli military has placed heavy restrictions on free movement. Due to several road closures in the West Bank, women in labor have been having difficulty traveling to hospitals safely. The United Nations estimates that around 2500 women face fatal or life-threatening complications while en route to receive assistance with labor. Consequently, the number of women who give birth without any proper medical attention has increased at the same time.

What We’re Doing About It

The writing and editing team here at Jolkona has created a campaign to help mothers and their children, while reducing these numbers. Lucky enough to have experienced safe births, the team is ready to help other mothers undergo healthy, successful deliveries while ensuring their children’s safety in the process.

The goal for the campaign is to raise $300 and provide six mothers and their children with these safe birth kits in an effort to support them in this difficult time.

Check out the video explaining what the campaign is all about:

How You Can Help

Support Safe Births in Palestine: Our partner, MADRE, has created a project to assist these women and children. Donations to the campaign start at $5, however, with your gift of just $50 you can provide a complete safe birth kit to a mother and child. As proof of who your donation has been helping, you will receive the mother and child’s name, as well.

MADRE, a partner of ours since 2009, is an international women’s human rights organization that works with community-based women’s organizations worldwide. Since the organization began in 1983, it has provided women in various countries around the globe with more than $25 million.

Support the Cause

Women and children in Palestine are in great need of our help with facilitating easier labor and deliveries. We invite you to join MADRE and us at Jolkona, with special help from the blogging and editing team, in supporting women and children in Palestine through our new campaign. Just in time for our 10 Days of Giving, a donation to the campaign is a great way to give back to the global community this holiday season.

Like Jolkona on Facebook, follow us on Twitter , and check us out on Pinterest to keep up with all of our ongoing projects.

Make a difference while showing you care this season with a Jolkona gift card.

With our gift cards, you will provide the recipient with a chance to give back to any one of their favorite Jolkona projects.

This season, we have rolled out new holiday gift card designs, and with a style to suit any personality, you can’t go wrong.

Give a friend, loved one or family member a gift that will bring smiles to more than just one face. It’s just the right gift for someone who has it all!

Like Jolkona on Facebook, follow us on Twitter , and check us out on Pinterest to keep up with all of our ongoing projects.

Blackbuad, a software supplier that frequently works with nonprofits, recently conducted a Donor Perspective survey in an attempt to find out more about how donors are giving to various nonprofits and philanthropic causes.

The study found a few major issues donors are having with the giving process–and we’re working to solve them.

The Scoop

In the study, a total of about 4,000 individuals from the US, the UK and Australia answered questions related to their giving habits.

According to the results, the second most reported reason donors stopped giving, right behind a change in their personal finances, was that they didn’t fully know or understand exactly where their money was going.

One of the other more staggering results of the survey was the reported difference in giving between those above the age of 35 and those below it. The study found that people between the ages of 18 and 24 gave about $463 in the last 12 months, while people ages 25-35 gave $800 on average. The 35-44 age group gave at an average of about $1,390 in the past year.

What We’re Doing to Help

According to Blackbaud, “[by] tracking the impact of contributions and communication that impact back to donors, nonprofits can increase the number of regular donors and ensure they are not losing the regular donors they have.”

Here at Jolkona, we hope to do just that for donors by providing them with proof of what their donation has done, while attempting to appeal to people under the age of 30 by making mobile donations easy at the same time.

By following up with donors after they give to any of our projects, we are proud to provide a name, photograph or more about the person or people their gift has impacted. In doing so, we aim to provide donors with not only complete transparency, but with the confidence that their gift has truly made a great impact, as well.

Moreover, we hope that our mobile site and project pages will work to make giving easier for a younger generation who is always on the go–with a cell phone in tote. By making mobile donation easy to complete, we hope to appeal to all donors and their specific giving needs.

We Owe it to You

Our strides to make giving easier would mean nothing if we didn’t have our wonderful donors’ support. We would like to say a big thank you to all of those who have helped us and our projects out, and will continue to work to make your giving process even easier.

Like Jolkona on Facebook, follow us on Twitter, and check us out on Pinterest to keep up with all of our ongoing projects.

It is estimated that a staggering 33.3 million people are living with HIV globally, and having killed over 25 million people between 1981 and 2007, HIV/AIDS has become one of the world’s most life threatening diseases, according to WorldAIDSDay.org.

The pandemic has been globally recognized once a year since the first world AIDS day was held in 1988, marking the creation of the first global health day. This Saturday, December 1, marks the 24th World AIDS Day, and a time when we should all reflect upon the millions of lives that the disease threatens and take action to fight the pandemic.

Phot credit due to worldaidscampaign.org

What You Can Do

Provide Medicine to HIV infected Kenyans with our partner Slum Doctor Programme (SDP). In Kenya, the government provides those infected with HIV/AIDS certain medicines to help fight the disease, but not with all the treatments that are needed. With a gift of $30 you can provide an infected individual in Kenya with two weeks of HIV treatment, or 1 month for $60. With your gift, SDP’s Tumaini Clinic program will help give free antiretroviral therapy that the government does not provide to Kenyans living with HIV.

Based out of Bellingham, WA, SDP also works locally to educate kids in middle school and high school with education about the HIV/AIDS epidemic.

Give Care to HIV Infected Cambodian Children: Cambodia is home to the highest number of HIV/AIDS in Asia.  Our partner New Hope for Cambodian Children (NHCC) works with orphaned children who are infected with HIV and often are not adopted because of their infection. By giving just $75 to NHCC you can support the medical needs of one HIV infected child for 6 months.

Promote Health Awareness in Kenya through Soccer: Our nonprofit partner Village Volunteers hosts a Kick it With Kenya program in which you can sponsor one child’s opportunity to gain health knowledge while having fun. While attending the soccer program, the child you sponsor will receive a health and HIV screening along with medical care, room and board, and a chance to take part in the fun, community-oriented soccer event.

You can also give a donation to the National AIDS Trust, or start a fundraiser of your own on their website, or begin a campaign on ours. The projects above, along with World AIDS day and everyone working to fight the disease worldwide will also work to accomplish one of the UN’s Millenium Development Goals, which is to combat HIV/AIDS, malaria and other diseases.

Take Action

Whatever you do, we invite you to take action with us here at Jolkona and our sponsors around the globe who are working to fight the disease both today and throughout the year. Don’t forget to wear red in support of World AIDS Day and the fight against the pandemic on December 1 and give back to one of our campaigns to show your support!

To get more information on AIDS/HIV and learn the facts about the disease and World AIDS day, visit Worldaidsday.org and take the “Are you HIV aware” online quiz.

Like Jolkona on Facebook, follow us on Twitter, and check us out on Pinterest to keep up with all of our ongoing projects.

With Thanksgiving just around the corner, it is easy to get excited about the great food and good times ahead, but it is also one of the most important times of the year to give. As a youth during the holiday season, my parents, along with people at my church and school, took the time to donate canned goods and money to various food drives.

Jolkona works with a multitude of projects year-round to eradicate hunger world wide, but for this special time of need we have created a compilation of some of these projects–and our very own holiday food drive.

Feeding into the Holidays: Give thanks and give back.

You Can Help

Provide Healthy Meals to Ugandan Children– Due to an increase in commodity costs, the price of a meal in Uganda has risen drastically. Through our partner, the Children of Uganda, your donation of just $55 will be used to feed a child for an entire week. You will help give children regular meals of rice, beans, and posho, a kind of porridge made with maize which is supplemented with vegetables, fruit, eggs and beef when available.

Give Fresh Produce to Children in School in Ecuador 40 percent of the Ecuadorian population consists of children ages 17 and under–and 70 percent of those kids and adolescents live in poverty according to UNICEF. Help our partner, Ecuador Children’s Hope Organization, ensure that kids in school receive the nutrients they need by giving them fresh produce. Your small gift of $65 will provide 300 children with fruits and vegetables for a week. By giving up a little, you will help hundreds gain so much.

Feed a Hungry Family in NicaraguaMADRE, an international women’s human rights organization that has partnered with Jolkona since 2009, has put together a project to give women in Nicaragua a gift that keeps on giving: gardening knowledge and tools. For just $50 you can give one woman the chance to grow food for her family by providing organic seeds. With their own gardens, women in Nicaragua can provide continuously for their families. Give today and help for months to come.

Build an Energy Efficient Stove for a Nepali Family More than 82 perfect of all Nepali households rely on firewood as a source of power; however, in the high altitudes of the country, trees grow slowly, and individuals must travel further and further each day as trees that can’t grow back quick enough are chopped away. With only $40 you can help families spend more time productively, and less time searching for firewood by helping build a full stove. Your gift will contribute good meals and some ease of comfort through our partner, Himalayan Healthcare. Instead of giving food for a week, help a family create nutritious meals for years to come.

Share What You Have

Most of us enjoy great food and treats throughout the holiday season, whether it is just one day of turkey, or a daily seasonal latte to help shake off the cool weather. However you enjoy this time, it is important to remember to help others find joy in these special days, and all throughout their lives.

Like Jolkona on Facebook, follow us on Twitter, and check us out on Pinterest to keep up with all of our ongoing projects.

On December 14, 1954 the United Nations’ General Assembly suggested each country adopt a Universal Children’s Day, and today, November 20, is the day that is now recognized as such.

The day also marks the date the UN’s Assembly enacted the Declaration of the Rights of a Child and the Convention on the rights of the Child, the former in 1959 and the latter in 1989.

In recognition of this day, on which great accomplishments have been made for the world’s youth, we would like to highlight some of our projects that work to give back to kids everywhere, everyday.

Support the Cause

Help Families Fleeing from Famine in Somalia-Somalia is in a declared state of famine, due to the drought in the African Horn, which is the worst the nation has seen in 60 years. Those fighting famine are more prone to dehydration and the contraction of diseases; children are especially susceptible. With your donation of $50, our partner MADRE will provide 5 health kits to a family. Through your gift you will not only be supporting kids on this year’s Universal Children’s Day, but the families that help provide for them.

Support an Orphan in Kenya: More than one million children have been orphaned in Kenya due to high mortality rates from HIV/AIDS, leaving them without many basic necessities. Your $30 donation will provide one child with an outfit, and you will receive a photo of them wearing the clothes you gave. Any gift you decide to give will be provided to our partner, Global Roots, and to the Baraka Orphanage, which has successfully worked to find homes for over 1,800 orphans in the area.

Provide Maternal and Child Healthcare in Guatemala: With a high infant mortality rate, women in Guatemala are in need of assistance in the execution of healthy deliveries and infant care—the country’s infancy mortality rate is 33 per 1,000 live births, and is even higher in rural areas. With your gift of $166 you can provide a mother and child with one week and pre- and post-delivery care. Our partners program, Project Concern International’s (PCI) Casa Materna (Mother’s House), focuses on preventing disease, improving community health, and promoting sustainable development. Help us and PCI support children and mothers in Guatemala through this great opportunity.

Give an Overnight Experience to Underserved Youth in USA: Inspire our country’ youth to learn: by providing $30 to the Ron McNair Camp-In, you will give one child a partial scholarship to attend an overnight event at the Pacific Science Center, our partner who works together with Blacks in Science to host the event. The child you sponsor will receive the partial scholarship along with three meals during the event, and your donation will help cover the costs of the workshops, educators and supplies for the children.

A Global Gift

In support of both the UN’s Universal Children’s Day and its eight Millennium Development goals, we hope that you will help us celebrate this year’s Children’s Day by giving back to the youth of the world it celebrates. According to UNICEF, children directly benefit from at least 6 of the 8 of the UN’s Millennium Development goals, and are indirectly helped by the remaining two. Take a second to look at any of our projects, which address at least one of the goals in some way, and give back to our kids however you would like.

Like Jolkona on Facebook, follow us on Twitter, and check us out on Pinterest to keep up with all of our ongoing projects.

Social media and the Internet have made it incredibly easy to give gifts to friends and family members, as well as donate to charities. Soon, Internet users may be able to do both in one stop. Either way, it is clear that online giving is a medium that has shown much potential.

The Scoop

Facebook has recently launched a new test feature which allows users to make a donation on behalf of a family member or friend through the website. The Charitable Contributions section in its soon-to-come Gifts application helps facilitate online charitable donations for the nonprofits it partners with.

So far, 11 nonprofits are working with Facebook, including the American Red Cross, Blue Star Families, the Boys and Girls Clubs of America, Donorschoose.org, Girls Inc., Kiva, LIVESTRONG, Oxfam America, Rainn, St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital, and Water.org. Donators can either choose which foundation they would like to donate funds to, or let the person on whose behalf they are donating decide.

The Facebook Gifts application is not yet available to all users, but is expanding to more users, according to the site.

To learn even more about Facebook Gifts and Charitable Contributions, take a look at the Facebook Newsroom.

A Popular Choice

Gaining more and more worldwide acknowledgement, online donations have become a way for nonprofits and other organizations to get people’s attention–and receive contributions. And the platform, it should be noted, has been quite successful at doing so.

According to NPEngage.com, “[o]nline donations are a larger percentage of giving every year, both in total revenue and number of donors.” The site also points out that online contributors tend to be younger, and give more both in their first donations and overtime.

It is no surprise then that the social media giant has tapped into to this resource, and we applaud the attention it will draw to online charities and contribution sites.

The application is a testament to both a platform that Jolkona has utilized for years, and the work the foundation has done to consistently attract young contributors to support our partners.

Keep Giving

We hope that the growth of applications like Facebook’s will continue to encourage people everywhere to contribute online to nonprofits like ours and to social causes all over the globe. Jolkona believes that our online contribution platform will add to the success of the goals of our non-profit partners, as well as to the betterment of the planet in its entirety, and is excited to see how the medium will expand in the near future.

Like Jolkona on Facebook, follow us on Twitter, and check us out on Pinterest to keep up with all of our ongoing projects.

As a recent college graduate, I understand how important proper employment training is. The US economy has created a dog-eat-dog competition style in the job market where every ounce of experience and knowledge is incredibly valuable.

That’s why I have created a campaign with the goal of assisting at least 10 students in getting a month’s worth of various employment education classes in order to help increase their chances of getting a job after graduation.

Students are constantly being reminded about how tough the job market will be for them after graduation by the press, educators, peers and parents. Action needs to be taken now to support students and lift them up in an economy threatening to tear them down.

What You Can Do

Prepare Kids in USA to Become Employable Adults–The poor job market and status of the United States’ economy is a highly debated topic that is not likely to disappear anytime soon. Regardless of one’s opinion on how to best turn the economy around, it is clear that too many Americans are out of work.

Soccer in the Streets, who has partnered with Jolkona since 2010, conducts a project titled School of Life, which teaches the country’s youth about resume building, employment preparation, community service and much more.

The organization started in 1989 and has since positively influenced the lives of over 125,000 people. It is a member of the United Soccer Collaborative in the United States, and streetfootballworld internationally.

By giving a gift of just $25 to Soccer in the Streets School of Life program, you will help one student gain the skills needed to become employable upon graduation. A month’s worth of supplies will be provided to the School of Life program in order to help teach these skills.

Do Even More

For $150, you can provide a student with six months of life skill training programs and empower their future.

To help further, your gift of $300 will be used to sponsor a student in life skills training programs for an entire year, after which you will receive a video from the student describing all of their successes.

Let’s make good jobs a reality in our youths’ futures, not a dream.

The Bigger Picture

Although there seems to be nothing more important to some Americans than landing a good job during this time of economic disarray, this project contributes to a larger cause: achieving the United Nation’s goal of eradicating hunger and poverty by 2015.

With your small gift, you can help the UN reach this huge end by making sure our youth has the means to support themselves in the future, while influencing younger generations to give back to their communities.

Learn more about Soccer in the Streets by checking out its website, following them on Twitter, or liking them on Facebook.

By learning and teaching others about this amazing program, we can work to lower future unemployment rates–without relying on empty campaign promises. Take action for tomorrow today, right now.

Help my campaign, Jolkona and the UN accomplish our goals of creating a better future by giving to our youth.

Like Jolkona on Facebook, follow us on Twitter, and check us out on Pinterest to keep up with all of our ongoing projects.

The gift of an education was the greatest thing anyone could have given me as a child and young adult. It’s what has allowed me to write this–and you to read it.

Here at Jolkona we know that learning leads to better lives and better communities, and have partnered with local, national and international projects working not only to make sure the youth of every country has primary education, but to take learning a few steps further wherever possible.

In recognition of UN week, we would like to highlight some of our partners that contribute to the accomplishment of at least one of the UN’s Millennium Development Goals: to provide universal primary education by 2015.

What You Can Do to Help

Provide education to girls in Liberia: The More Than Me Foundation works to get girls in Liberia and West Africa into schools and helps to provide students with books, scholarships, and more. More than 61% of the most impoverished school aged girls in the Liberia are not receiving an education. The foundation has begun to help by already successfully putting more than 100 girls into schooling with full support.

You can give two girls a year of school supplies for only $25, or give four girls mandatory uniforms for only $50. If you want to take your generosity one step further, $100 will give a girl an education for a semester, and $250 will give the gift of education for an entire year.

Give books and education to children in Myanmar: Our non-profit partner Education Empowerment works to help provide kindergartens in rural areas with libraries full of books tailored towards the students’ reading levels. According to UNICEF, 70% of children in Myanmar who are able to attend primary school do not finish, and 33% never even begin.

Your small gift of $25 helps stock a library in Burma, and $50 will provide class materials for 50 Burmese students for 1 year. Either gift will give on for a lifetime.

Support Youth Led Journalism in the United States: Ashoka Youth Venture Seattle’s project, the Beat, tackles primary education with hands-on leadership by helping aspiring young reporters, photographers, illustrators and writers in the Issaquah area get published, and more importantly, noticed.  Through the Beat, teens publish a self-made page in the Issaquah Press.

Youth Venture is already inspiring young locals to get involved intellectually at the public level.

Through the course of extensive research required for writing about issues for the Beat, I hope to develop my own understanding, wrote Nitin Shyamkumar of Skyline High School in one of his articles for the Beat.

With $50, you can sponsor one student’s story and provide them with real-world working experience and understanding. For a $500 donation, you will sponsor an issue of The Beat and receive a digital copy, while helping the youth establish a more active voice in their community.

Help Educated Underserved Youth of Color in USA: Less than 25% of children of color in Washington State in the 8th grade receive a score of Proficient or higher on national math and science tests. The Technology Access Foundation is working to help increase that percentage by preparing underserved 6-12 graders in the fields of science, technology, engineering and math for an on-track high school graduation and college beginning.

Your gift of just $30 will provide a student with headphones needed for Techstart, and for $35 you can provide headphones for language classes. You can also give an entire language arts class literature curriculum for a year for just $50, or help purchase robotics kits for students for the same amount.

Take Action

Give to these great projects or any of our other partners working to accomplish the UN’s goal today and help provide universal education to the youth across the globe. It may just be the best gift you give this holiday season.

Follow us on Twitter, like us on Facebook, and check out our Pinterest to stay up to date with what’s happening all of our projects.

GET INVOLVED!