Are you software-savvy? Sign up to teach older adults computer and technology skills through SeniorNet (seniornet.org). Helping our elderly with tech skills is so rewarding. I have seen grandmothers go from never having emailed before to loving the world wide web and contributing their own wisdom, one tweet at a time.
Thursday, August 11, 2022
Tuesday, August 9, 2022
Studies show pets provide both a psychological and physical boost to their owners- so donate to petsfortheelderly.org to help a senior get a dog or a cat. The unconditional love of a pet can make a life that much sweeter.
Monday, August 8, 2022
Friday, August 5, 2022
Have you ever heard of the Bolinas Free Box? This institution began 30 years ago by accident. As the story goes, a young couple was departing the shores of Bolinas, California, and dumped some boxes of extra belongings behind at the community center as they left. The rather nice assortment of clothes, books, and household utensils drew some interested residents to have a look. By the end of the day, several other people had brought free stuff down to share. The Free Box took up residence in a shed between the health food store and the community center and has been providing all comers with all kinds of free fare ever since. The era of the free box was born.
Thursday, August 4, 2022
The gift economy is a really helpful concept for the budget-conscious, and it can help you, too. It may be time to reexamine everything you thought you couldn’t do and see if there is another way. Vacationing is a good example- you can trade homes and explore what you could not afford before, while offering the same in return. This free accommodation exchange will give you a really unique and much more personal view of a new place as well as a way to connect with people who live there. The idea is not new; Servas International (servas.org) was founded in 1949 and is recognized by the United Nations as a hospitality network. Check out the wildly successful and well organized CouchSurfing (couchsurfing.org) and Hospitality Club (hospitalityclub.org). And take time to look around the web; there are many similar, smaller initiatives online catering to the budget traveler or people wanting to take a volunteer vacation in another hemisphere.
Wednesday, August 3, 2022
Redistributing surplus has been the driving force behind many nonprofit organizations serving local communities. One of my favorite initiatives is the Scrounger’s Center for Reusable Art Parts, otherwise known as SCRAP. SCRAP has been operating in an industrial district in San Francisco since 1976. Donations of paper, paint, and all kinds of arty bits and pieces are the mainstay of SCRAP’s inventory. I’ve seen reams of embossed ribbon, plaster casts, tubes of glitter, and circuit boards. They offer art supplies at very low cost and provide free materials for art projects. Go over there and get inspired to create! Learn more information about SCRAP, a source for the resourceful, at scrap-sf.org