Entries Tagged 'Weekly Charity Match' ↓

Weekly Charity Match #011: Amnesty International

I apologize for the late entry; I’m on a work trip this week and it’s thrown off my entire schedule. It’s been a chaotic weekend for the Trump administration as well, with his National Security Advisor, Michael Flynn, resigning over substantiated allegations of significant ties to Russia, and the admission that he had lied about conversations with the Russian government. This is hopefully the first among many resignations from the Trump administration – including, ideally, Trump himself…

Last Week: CAIR

Thanks to Maria E., Madeleine B., and our anonymous matcher, we raised a total of $180 for CAIR last week!

This week: Amnesty International

With Trump’s refusal to participate in the international efforts to aid refugees from Syria and elsewhere, the work of NGOs becomes even more important. Amnesty International‘s work in support of human rights is known around the world, not only assisting refugees but also fighting against torture, capital punishment, and other abuses.

Donations to Amnesty International are handled by the individual national sections that make up the organization; from the main website, click the “Donate Now” link in the upper right and select your country.  Forward your donation receipts to matching@pyrlogos.com; I’ll match the first $100 donated (regardless of section), and enter you into February’s art giveaway as well.

Call to Action

The chair of the House Oversight Committee, Jason Chaffetz, claims that there is no need to further investigate Michael Flynn’s ties to Russia because the problem is “taking care of itself”. I disagree. If anything, Flynn’s resignation demonstrates the validity of the criticisms leveled against Trump himself since even before the election – that he is beholden to the interests of a foreign government.

Please call your representatives and ask them to continue the investigation into the Trump administration’s ties to Russia, and also to demand Trump’s tax returns and other documentation about his assets and holdings, which he has still not made public. These two things are connected, and the picture they paint is not a pleasant one.

 

 

Weekly Charity Match #009: ACLU/CAIR

Trump’s executive order to ban Muslims from entering the country is dangerous and wrong on so many levels.  It’s immoral, it threatens Americans abroad, it will be used as another recruitment tool for ISIS, and its overly wide ban prevents even long-time non-citizen residents of the US – holders of green cards, workers’ visas, and others – from returning to the homes where they have lived and worked for years.  In many cases, his order keeps people from their families currently living legally in the US.  Not content to ignore the existing refugee crisis, Trump is actually creating more refugees with this order.

Even given his erroneous justifications, this is still badly implemented policy.  Of the four countries of which the September 11th terrorists were citizens – Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Egypt, and Lebanon – none were included.  Trump has business interests in Saudi Arabia, Egypt, and the UAE, as well as Turkey and Azerbaijan, two other Muslim-majority countries not included in the order.  This is not to suggest that the order should be extended – it should be rescinded – but rather to demonstrate that the only thing restraining Trump’s Islamophobia seems to be his own greed.

And unlike most of Trump’s reprehensible policies, this one became a crisis for thousands of people with a stroke of Trump’s pen.  So that’s why I’m starting this week’s match early, and increasing its scope.  There’s still time to donate to the Disrupt J20 legal fund as well.

This Week: ACLU and CAIR

I’ve raised money for the ACLU here before, and while I was intending to go a little longer before repeating an organization, the Muslim ban is an immediate emergency.  The ACLU has filed a lawsuit against Trump on behalf of two people detained on that order, and is also helping many other people who found themselves stranded as a result of the ban.  Donate to the ACLU here.1I mentioned ACLU’s peculiarities with respect to tax deductions last time.  The legal work they’re doing here, including the lawsuit, can be supported through donations to the ACLU Foundation as well.

I am also including a second organization this week: the Council on American-Islamic Relations.  They have been on the front lines of the fight against Islamophobia for over two decades, and today they announced a federal lawsuit challenging the constitutionality of the ban.  They are also assisting American residents currently stranded outside the country by the ban.  Donate to CAIR here.

Due to the gravity and immediacy of this problem, I’m increasing my matching limits as well.  We’ll match the first $500 in donations to each organization.  EDIT 1/30: Another anonymous donor has contacted me with matching funds; the first $100 to each organization will be double matched, for a total of $1,200 in available matching funds this week – just forward your donation receipts to matching@pyrlogos.com.  As usual, each donation to either organization2This is an exception to the one-entry-per-week rule; donating to both organizations means two entries in the giveaway. will also count as an entry in the monthly art giveaway.

Call to Action

Call your representatives and senator – here’s a handy tool to find them – and make it clear that you oppose Trump’s anti-Muslim executive order.  Tell them the stories of legal residents of the US leaving the country and suddenly learning they couldn’t come back.  Point out that those residents have effectively been deported without due process.  Raise the moral question of our refusal to admit refugees; remind them that Anne Frank was denied a US visa that would have saved her life, and that in her case, as in thousands of others, the United States’ refusal to admit refugees was literally a death sentence.  Point out that the ban doesn’t affect the countries where Trump owns real estate.  Whatever you need to do to convince your congresspeople that this is an immoral, illegal, and unjustifiable act.

We need to fight this, and we need our Congress fighting it too.

Footnotes   [ + ]

1. I mentioned ACLU’s peculiarities with respect to tax deductions last time.  The legal work they’re doing here, including the lawsuit, can be supported through donations to the ACLU Foundation as well.
2. This is an exception to the one-entry-per-week rule; donating to both organizations means two entries in the giveaway.

Weekly Charity Match #008: Disrupt J20 Legal Fund

So, the inauguration happened.  Then, the Women’s Marches happened.  At least 2.5 million people, on seven continents – that movement is still in its infancy, and has a lot of growing to do (see the ongoing arguments about intersectionality), but we’ve put the Trump administration on notice, and it’s time to follow that notice up with action.

Last week: Islamic Center of Eastside

Thanks to donors Carrie E., Rebekah C., Maria E., and Eric A., we raised a total of $280 for the Islamic Center of Eastside to rebuilt their arson-damaged mosque.  Thank you, everyone!

This week: Disrupt J20 Legal Fund

Over 200 protestors were arrested at the inauguration.  Many of them will face “felony riot” charges, carrying a maximum sentence of 10 years in prison and $25,000 in fines.  The Disrupt J20 Legal Fund will be helping the protestors fight these trumped-up charges.  It takes a lot of courage to risk protesting an authoritarian president in the nation’s capital, and I do not intend to leave behind the people that took that risk and found themselves in a jail cell at the end of the day.  As usual, I’ll match the first $100 in donation receipts sent to matching@pyrlogos.com.

Call to Action

The organizers of the Women’s March are launching an action campaign to follow up the marches across the world.  Continue making your voices heard.

Weekly Charity Match #007: Islamic Center of Eastside

One of the many disturbing facets of Trumpism that I haven’t yet talked about here is Islamophobia.  Trump’s insistence that Muslims are categorically dangerous to America has inspired a rash of hate crimes and bolstered the xenophobic outlook of his supporters.  This week, I want to combat that with a clear demonstration that we welcome and support our Muslim neighbors.

Last week: ProPublica

Thanks to donors Abigail W., Eric A., and their matching employers, last week we raised a total of $350 for ProPublica and its mission of independent journalism.  Thank you so much!

This week: Islamic Center of Eastside

For our next charity, I’m focusing a little closer to home than usual.  Early on the morning of January 14th, a fire devastated a mosque in Bellevue, Washington; investigators believe it was the result of arson.  The mosque, the Islamic Center of Eastside, has been vandalized repeatedly over the last six months.  The Islamic Center is now raising money to rebuild; they estimate it will take half a million dollars to fully recover from this attack.

As usual, we’ll match the first $100 donated; go to LaunchGood to donate, and forward your donation receipts to matching@pyrlogos.com.  In addition to the matching donation, each donor is also entered into the art giveaway drawing at the end of the month.

Call to Action

The Affordable Care Act is in danger – and with it, millions of Americans’ access to health care.  The Republicans have claimed to be following a “repeal and replace” plan, but seven years after the ACA was passed, they still don’t have anything even resembling a replacement plan.  Put simply, if the ACA is repealed, thousands of people will die.  That said, Congress’ recent attempts to circumvent ethics rules, which they were forced to backtrack after public outcry, shows that they will react to a sufficiently large and vocal opposition.  So: call your Congresspeople!  Bustle has some scripts you can use.

Weekly Charity Match #006: ProPublica

The first few days of the 115th Congress include an attempt to dismantle the House’s ethics office, Republicans trying to rush through confirmation on Trump’s Cabinet nominees before their ethics investigations and background checks are completed, and the long-expected effort to revoke the health insurance of millions of Americans.  It’s hard to keep on top of it all, especially since most corporate media has no interest in criticizing the Trump regime in any depth, so this week’s non-profit is deeply necessary.

More on that after we review our impact from 2016.  And read on to the end to learn about the new donation incentive: a monthly art giveaway!

Year Five Weeks In Review

Last week’s donation from Rebekah C. plus our match resulted in $50 donated to NARAL.  That brings us to a total of $1,475 raised for five charities in November and December last year!  Thank you to everyone who has donated so far.

If we can do that in five weeks, what can we do with the fifty-one weeks left this year?  I’m going to be ambitious and set a goal of $20,000 raised through the Weekly Charity Match this year.  Let’s get started!

This Week: ProPublica

From their website:

ProPublica is an independent, non-profit newsroom that produces investigative journalism in the public interest. Our work focuses exclusively on truly important stories, stories with “moral force.” We do this by producing journalism that shines a light on exploitation of the weak by the strong and on the failures of those with power to vindicate the trust placed in them.

They’ve got a lot of work ahead of them.

When you donate to ProPublica this week, send your donation receipt to matching@pyrlogos.com, and we’ll match the first $100 in donations.

New: Monthly Art Giveaway!

To further incentivize donations, it’s time for me to pull out my art supplies again… In addition to the matching program, every forwarded donation receipt, regardless of the amount1Limit one entry per person per week; you don’t need to split your donation up into multiple smaller donations just to generate more receipts., will count as an entry into a monthly art giveaway.  I’ll draw a custom portrait for a randomly drawn donor, and mail them the original art.  (I’ll post a scan here too, unless the donor asks I do otherwise.)

Call to Action

We’ve seen recently that the combined voices of many can sway Congress’s decisions, simply by letting them know that we’re paying attention.  This week, via @derekcnel on Twitter, a request to call your Senator and ask them to allow the ethics review process to continue:

Footnotes   [ + ]

1. Limit one entry per person per week; you don’t need to split your donation up into multiple smaller donations just to generate more receipts.

Weekly Charity Match returns January 9th

While I liked the “Matching Monday” name (because Alliteration is Awesome!), it’s not just a Monday project; donors have contributed on every day of the week, and I usually make my matching donation sometime over the weekend.  So, the “Matching Monday” series will be called “Weekly Charity Match” going forward.

And while I’d hoped that the holiday vacation would be somewhat refreshing, even with the travel involved, I hadn’t counted on both of my kids catching various illnesses, and one of them spending nearly the entire 11-day trip sick.  So I’m picking this project up again next week.  (I am, of course, still accepting donation receipts for NARAL.)

Finally, I’ll be announcing a new donation incentive next Monday as well.  Stay tuned!

Matching Monday: Off for the Holidays

Thus far, I have not received any donation receipts for NARAL, which has me questioning the future of Matching Monday just a bit.

I don’t want to lose momentum on this project.  I also don’t want to get frustrated with it.  The holidays are an expensive time of year between gifts, travel, and the various minor expenses of winter; they’re also a busy time for much the same reason.

We’ll be back on January 2nd with another charity to support, and during the break I’ll still continue collecting donation receipts for NARAL; even if I have nothing to match I plan to make a donation to them anyway.  But I’d much prefer to have my match maxed out again.

I’m also going to be thinking about ways to improve the project; if you have any thoughts, feel free to comment!

Happy holidays, everyone, and I hope what’s left of the year is an improvement on what we’ve seen of it so far.

Matching Monday #005: NARAL

It’s been a rough week for me personally, in addition to the ongoing sociopolitical problems we face.  A lot of my motivation in writing this at the moment is simply wanting to live up to the commitment I made of doing one of these posts every week.  Five weeks in, and I’m sure many if not most of us are already tiring of the fight.  A wise lady on one of my favorite blogs1Seriously, Making Light is one of the only places on the Internet where the usual “don’t read the comments” advice for high-readership blogs doesn’t apply, thanks to an invested community and careful, compassionate moderating. has some advice on how to keep up the resistance without burning ourselves out.

(And for those of you who were following my Dragaera posts and wondering what happened to them – my post on Dragon is nearly complete.  Should have it up later this week.)

Last Week: ACLU

Thanks to Maria E., David B., and Eric A., we donated a total of $355 to the ACLU.  Thank you, everyone!

This Week: NARAL

With new anti-choice legislation being pushed in Indiana, Ohio, and Texas, it is clear that opponents of women’s reproductive freedom have been emboldened by Trump’s victory just like other factions of his supporters.  NARAL Pro-Choice America is on the front lines of the fight to allow women to have control over their bodies.  Like the ACLU last week, NARAL participates in lobbying efforts as well as public outreach, so while donations to NARAL itself are not tax-deductible, donations to the NARAL Foundation are.  In spite of that, this week I intend to make my matching donation to NARAL itself since so much of the battle over abortion rights is still being fought in state legislatures across the company; I’ll still include donations to either entity in the amount I match (up to $100 as usual).

NARAL will accept donations in honor of others, so this week I’m recommending we “honor” Rep. Tom Price, consistent anti-choice legislator and Trump’s pick to head the Department of Health and Human Services.  You can have a notification of your contribution sent to him at:

Congressman Tom Price
85-C Mill Street, Suite 300
Roswell, GA 30075

And, as always, forward your email donation receipts to matching@pyrlogos.com to have them counted!

Call to Action

Last week, Shaun King announced the Injustice Boycott, aimed at pressuring the cities of New York and San Francisco to address their racial injustice issues, and at defunding the Dakota Access Pipeline and divesting from companies that support it.  Read the announcement and join the boycott; while the boycotts in NY and SF are planned to start on January 17th, they are working on defunding DAPL immediately, and it’s easy to help out.

Footnotes   [ + ]

1. Seriously, Making Light is one of the only places on the Internet where the usual “don’t read the comments” advice for high-readership blogs doesn’t apply, thanks to an invested community and careful, compassionate moderating.

Matching Monday #004: ACLU

We finally got some good news yesterday; the Army Corp of Engineers has denied Dakota Access a necessary permit for the pipeline at Standing Rock, and they intend to issue an Environmental Impact Statement.  Alternate routes for the pipeline will be considered.  The fight isn’t completely over, but this is an important victory nevertheless.

Last Week: Trans Lifeline

Thanks to donors Maria E., Eric A., and Rebekah C., we donated a total of $330 to Trans Lifeline!  Maria included a note as well:

I would like this to be in honor of a brave friend of mine, “MB”, who was very open about his transition in order to help others not feel so alone. He brings light and strength and love to this world.

This Week: ACLU

The past few days have seen a number of alarming statements from Trump.  His baseless assertion that millions of votes were cast illegally is a pretext for continuing the voter suppression efforts that already disenfranchised hundreds of thousands of people, while his desire to not only jail flag-burners but also strip their citizenship displays ignorance of, or indifference to, our First Amendment rights.

More than ever, during the Trump administration we will need the American Civil Liberties Union working to protect our rights.  The ACLU’s efforts in court cases, legislative advocacy, and public outreach help defend the civil rights of all Americans.

Because of the fact that some of the ACLU’s efforts include lobbying, donations to the ACLU itself are not tax-deductible.  However, donations to the ACLU Foundation are tax-deductible; those gifts support everything except the lobbying efforts.  You can read more about the difference here; for the purposes of Matching Monday (and my usual $100 match) I’ll happily consider donations to either entity.1I’ll be donating my matching funds to the Foundation regardless, both for tax purposes and because I expect the outreach and litigation work to be more important and more effective than the lobbying work over the next couple years.  Forward your donation receipts to matching@pyrlogos.com.

If you’d like another way to help, artist Mary Capaldi is selling some beautiful enamel pins with 25% of the price going to the ACLU, through next February.  If you love butterflies, art pins, and/or civil rights, this is a great way to contribute, get something pretty, and support an independent artist at the same time!

Call to Action

A friend of mine created a Social Activism Advent Calendar for December.  We’re a couple days in, but it’s never too late to start!  The linked PDF is full of ideas (and links to other similar resources) for things you can do every single day – including attending local events, donating to charities, educating yourself on the issues, and doing things to protect yourself as needed.

Footnotes   [ + ]

1. I’ll be donating my matching funds to the Foundation regardless, both for tax purposes and because I expect the outreach and litigation work to be more important and more effective than the lobbying work over the next couple years.

Matching Monday #003: Trans Lifeline

Week three, and I’m heartened to see that we’re still fighting.  My greatest fear is that we will collectively normalize Trump’s behavior – that we’ll start acting like this is just the way things are now, rather than continuing to push back against what is already proving to be the most corrupt administration in the history of this country.

Last Week: SPLC

Thanks to donors Maria E., Tina H., Lorna Q., Jami K., and Eric A., we donated a total of $410 to the Southern Poverty Law Center in Steve Bannon’s honor.  The SPLC has its own matching program going on as well at the moment, including a double match for Giving Tuesday that started sometime last week, so our total impact is somewhere around a thousand dollars.  Let’s keep it up!

This Week: Trans Lifeline

Transgender people were already at significantly higher risk of suicide than the general population before November 8th, and Trump’s election has compounded the problem.  In addition to the transphobia and hate crimes that Trump’s campaign has stoked and emboldened, transgender people now also face threats to their medical treatment, thanks to the Republican promise to repeal the Affordable Care Act; both of these dangers have resulted in a sudden increase in transgender suicides.

Trans Lifeline is a crisis hotline for transgender people.  While their primary focus is on preventing suicide and self-harm, they are open for any transgender person in need.  The line is staffed by transgender people, so callers know they can talk to someone else who understands their experiences.

This week, rather than making donations in honor of one of the transphobes in the upcoming administration, I’d like to keep the focus on the memories of the loved ones we have lost, and on the experiences of those who remain.  When you forward your donation receipts to matching@pyrlogos.com, if you’d like to add a sentence or two about the person or people you honored with your donation, I’ll include your note in next week’s wrap-up post.  (I’ll match the first $100 in donations.)

Calls to Action

The spreadsheet I linked last week now has a script for calling to support the protesters in North Dakota who are fighting against the Dakota Access Pipeline.  The Army has announced plans to “close” the lands the protesters are occupying on December 6th and restrict protests to a “free speech zone”, in violation of treaties and the First Amendment, so the tribes gathered at Standing Rock need our support now more than ever.

Beyond that, if you are able, I’ll ask you to stand up for someone.  If you see someone being abused because of who they are – whether verbally or physically, whether online or off – do what you can to protect them.  Make sure that both the abuser and their target know that electing a hateful bigot and misogynist to the Presidency doesn’t make harassment and abuse okay.  (This is something I’m still working on myself, since social anxiety makes confrontation difficult for me – but even just drawing the victim into a more positive conversation can help stop harassment.)