All Women's Talk

7 Lesser-Known Charities You'll Want to Support ...

By Teresa

There are so many huge, great charities out there, but there are a bunch of lesser-known charities that deserve a little praise as well. Because it’s the holiday season, and giving is one of the greatest parts of the holidays, I thought it would be a great time to let everyone know about a few of my favorite lesser-known charities that hold a special place in my heart. Hopefully after reading, they’ll hold a special place in your heart as well!

1 Ronan Thompson Foundation

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The Ronan Thompson Foundation is a charity I’ve held near and dear to me for over a year. Ronan Thompson was diagnosed with neuroblastoma when he was three years old. His mom started a blog chronicling their journey, and after his passing it became a blog where she writes letters to her little boy. Her blog is beautiful, and will undoubtedly leave you in tears. The Ronan Thompson Foundation gained popularity when Taylor Swift wrote and performed a song called “Ronan” at a Stand Up to Cancer event in 2012. If you haven’t heard the song, I sincerely suggest looking it up. It’s a beautiful tribute to a little boy more beautiful than words could ever explain. Neuroblastoma is an absolutely horrific cancer, and gets very little assistance, so personally, this is one of my favorite lesser-known charities.

2 The Ryan Ferguson Fund

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You’ve probably heard of Ryan Ferguson but you may or may not remember his story. If you don’t, it’s summed up pretty easily. Ryan Ferguson is a 29-year-old man who was convicted of a murder he didn’t commit when he was 19. Many people question whether or not he was innocent, but spending ten minutes researching will clear up any doubts you may have. His DNA wasn’t found at the scene, and the only evidence used to convict him was based on two witnesses, one of which said it was a “dream-like memory.” Both witnesses have since recanted their accounts, and finally Ryan Ferguson is free. After spending ten years in prison, he has no possessions. Thankfully he has a group of supporters who have come together to help him start his life!


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3 Autism Speaks

Donate to Autism Speaks here
Donate to WEC here

Autism is a disability that is often in the media, but as a cause it doesn’t receive much of the limelight. Autism Speaks works very closely with one of my favorite shows, which is how I first found this charity. You may remember World of Jenks, a show on MTV that takes the saying “walk a mile in their shoes” and puts it into action. Chad is a young man with autism, and was featured on both season one and two of the show. He went to a school that helped him and many other students with disabilities get the education they need to properly function as adults in a safe setting and environment. His school is on the brink of closing, but it’s definitely a worthy cause. In a world where one in eighty-eight children are diagnosed with autism, we desperately need schools like the Westchester Exceptional Children’s School. Chad’s school is just one of many schools and institutions that need our help. Yes, autism may be in the media fairly often, but there’s so much more we can do.

4 Newborns in Need

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As their website says, 2,000 babies are born into poverty every year in the United States alone. Newborns in Need are out to change that. They provide basic needs such as baby blankets, clothes, diapers, and soap, to families with newborns born into poverty. The United States is a country where babies are being born into poverty every day, and that’s often overlooked because it’s not a typical country to have such problems. Still, it’s happening, and all babies deserve something as simple as a blanket, so this is definitely a charity worth donating to.

5 The Heidelberg Project

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Being from Michigan, The Heidelberg Project is a non-profit that I hold close to my heart. The Heidelberg Project is basically a huge art project to help children and the neighborhoods of Detroit. Many schools are getting rid of their art programs, so The Heidelberg Project gives children in Detroit another outlet to be creative, as well as keeping the kids from getting into bad crowds. Besides the good it does for the community, it also serves as a tourist spot, which is of course a positive.

6 The Little Market

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The Little Market was recently founded by Lauren Conrad to help women in developing countries. If you’ve had the opportunity to go to a developing country, you’ve probably noticed the amazing goods that women make to sell to tourists, whether it’s accessories, blankets, or other beautiful products. Lauren personally went and found all of the amazing products on the website, and is simply providing an online marketplace for the women. They’re great as gifts, or simply for you. Either way, you will be helping a woman in a developing country!

7 The Left to Tell Charitable Fund

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If you’ve never heard of Imaculée Ilibagiza, I suggest a Google search is in order. She is one of the strongest women I’ve had the pleasure of meeting, and deserves more praise than I can even put into words. She was a part of the Rwandan genocide in 1994. She hid in a bathroom for three months. When she was finally safe, she learned that most of her family had been killed in the genocide. She is strong beyond words. She now travels the world telling her story through many different media outlets, but also raises money for the children left without parents or homes after the genocide. If that’s not a worthy cause, I really don’t know what is.

What are your favorite charities? Let me know a few of your favorites in the comments!

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