Featured Monthly Nonprofits
Real Austin Texas is a proud supporter of worthy Austin nonprofit organizations (and sometimes those outside of Austin as well).
In fact, one of the most fulfilling aspects of owning and operating an Austin-based website is getting the opportunity of directly giving back to the community that the site celebrates in the first place.
Why Give? A Short History of Real Austin Texas
This site began in earnest in the spring of 2009. In September 2009, I committed to making a nominal (and modest) contribution each month to a different Austin nonprofit organization (trust me, we're not talking about major corporate underwriting here).
But I do believe in giving back and contributing when possible to those organizations that make your world, and in this case, my own community, a better place.
I also decided to share the list of Austin nonprofit organizations this site has supported in order to encourage others - whether you operate a commercial website or not - to do something similar.
Again, the amounts I contribute aren't going to get my name engraved on anything anytime soon, but if everyone contributed their own nominal and modest amounts, they won't have to.
So I challenge you to create your own list of worthy organizations whose values you share and whose work you can commit to supporting. Here is mine . . .
Austin Featured Nonprofit of the Month:
May 2010 - The Austin Young Men Business League's Sunshine Camps has been the longstanding beneficiary of the popular annual Schlotzsky's Bun Run SK. The Sunshine Camps organization was formed in 1928 and provides year round programs (including a real summer camp experience) for low income and at risk youth.
Schlotzsky's Bun Run/Austin Sunshine Camps
This month's contribution (like last month) is via registration for the underlying fundraising event: the 28th annual Schlotzsky's Bun Run benefiting Austin Sunshine Camps.
Previous Featured Nonprofits - 2009-2010
April 2010 - This month is the 12th annual Mighty Texas Dog Walk, a fun and barking event that raises funds for this month's nonprofit of the month - Texas Hearing and Service Dogs. THSD "trains dogs to assist Texans living with hearing or mobility challenges." The dogs and (humane) dog training are provided for free to qualifying individuals.
This month's contribution is in the form of registration for the 12th annual Mighty Texas Dog Walk.
March 2010 - This month I'm selecting two worthy nonprofits since February went by a little too fast for me and I failed to make an official selection.
SafePlace is committed to, according to their mission statement, "ending sexual and domestic violence through safety, healing and prevention for individuals, families and our community." The organization provides shelter, counseling, and other resources for those who have experienced and been impacted by forms of violence that no one should ever be exposed to. Additionally, each April, SafePlace organizes a SafePlace Field Day and Festival fundraiser at Fiesta Gardens.
Hospice Austin has been serving Austin and Central Texas with compassion and dignity since 1979. In addition to cash donations, the hospice also maintains a wish list of items on their website for their pantry, patients' homes, and for Hospice Austin's Christopher House.
February 2010 - Although I'd like to blame it on the short month, the real culprit here was my faulty time management skills. In short, I dropped the ball and failed to make to select a nonprofit of the month or make a donation to anyone this month. But I "caught up" in March by highlighting and donating to two Austin nonprofits. See above.
January 2010 - KMFA - 89.5 FM ("Classically Austin") is this month's featured nonprofit. KMFA celebrated its 43rd birthday in January not only as Austin's classical radio station, but also as one of the best classical radio stations in the country. Click on the link above to see why I love it. I am pleased to wish KMFA, which is almost entirely dependent upon listener support, a Happy Birthday by naming it the Real Austin Texas featured nonprofit for January 2010.
December 2009 - Children's Art Project (M.D. Anderson Cancer Center) - The Children's Art Project is one of my favorite nonprofit fundraising programs. The program sells Christmas cards, gifts, and other artwork created by pediatric cancer patients at M.D. Anderson in Houston. The money is used to fund various patient programs including: educational programs, scholarships, week long camping trips, ski trips, writing and music therapy, and several others.
Christmas cards are typically available seasonally in Austin at HEB, Central Market, and Randalls grocery stores as well as CVS pharmacies. You can also view the entire (and extensive) product line at the link above or view/request the free catalog.
November 2009 - The Fisher House (@ Fort Hood, Texas) - Most of the time, it's fun to give. This month's contribution, however, is in response to a terrible tragedy - the mass shooting on November 5th at nearby Fort Hood that left 13 dead.
From the Darnell Army Medical Center website: The Fisher House is a "home away from home" for military personnel (both active and retired) and their families during a medical crisis. The house has a warm, compassionate environment where families and caring friends can nurture one another in times of need. It offers families a clean, safe, low-cost respite from the stress of worrying about loved ones. The house was a gift to the Fort Hood community from Zachary and Elizabeth Fisher of New York.
October 2009 - Room to Read - Room to Read partners with local communities throughout the developing world to provide quality educational opportunities by establishing libraries, creating local language children's literature, constructing schools, and providing education to girls. The Real Austin Texas selection of and contribution to the Room to Read's Austin Chapter was done in a sort of back door manner via participation in the very cool Austin Makes a Book Project coordinated by Austin's Phenix & Phenix Literary Publicists.
September 2009 - KOOP Radio - KOOP radio (pronounced "co-op") is a community radio station, operated and broadcast entirely by volunteers. The mission of KOOP (per its Mission Statement) is "to provide high quality, innovative, and diverse community-oriented programming to Austin with an emphasis on those communities that are ignored or underserved by mainstream media..."
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