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Ask Corina: Gift Registries That Make a Difference

What gift registries do you recommend for helping charities?

Recently I’ve been looking into alternative gift registries and came across an organization and website called UniversalGiving. It is a social entrepreneurship non-profit whose mission is to make giving and volunteering a natural part of our everyday lives. Their web service connects donors and volunteers with worthwhile organizations all over the world working to protect the environment, children, animals, and much more.

If you’re like me, you may have an aversion to giving over the internet because you’re just not sure where that money is going. What I like about this service is their obvious transparency and wide variety of projects to pick from. Through UniversalGiving you can help reduce trash in Africa for $25, help send one million books to Sierra Leone’s children for $75, or contribute to the building of a rural school in India

As a green wedding consultant I help my clients look at alternative gift registries, which I’m happy to see UniversalGiving has! They offer gift registries and gift packages starting at $30, and the ability to send gift packages in someone’s name. You can adopt an orphaned chimpanzee in Cameroon, West Africa in the name of your best friend for just $15 a month. They would receive an 8×10 photograph of their chimpanzee, a full biography, periodic updates and a certificate of guardianship, and of course the satisfaction of making a real difference!

I think they do a really nice job making the cause projects transparent, easy to access, and the website simple to understand. It is tangible and realistic– making the whole giving experience feel great for you and your fiends. So when you’re planning your next birthday party, wedding, bar mitzvah, or anniversary please consider making a difference by registering through UniversalGiving. Have your family and friends get involved in helping to make our planet a safer, cleaner, and more compassionate place for our future.

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