Our people must learn to do good by meeting the urgent needs of others; then they will not be unproductive.~ Titus 3:14, NLT

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Tuesday, January 31, 2012

The Alex Smith Foundation Forward Progress for Foster Teens in Transition

The Alex Smith Foundation provides foster teens with the tools and resources needed to transition to successful adulthood by developing and promoting Mentoring, Education Housing Internship, Job and Advocacy programs. By providing five-year scholarships, year round housing and extensive individual guidance and support, the Guardian scholars program provides the opportunity to change individual lives, realize true independence and reach their full potentialhttp://www.alexsmithfoundation.org/

You can make a difference!

Anyone can be a champion for foster youth by supporting this great cause!
Contact them to find out how you can make a difference in a foster youth's life today!

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Don't Throw away your expired coupons. Send them to our military families overseas.

Coups For Troops

Clipping Coupons For A Cause
Commissaries overseas accept manufacturer coupons up to six months past expiration.  You can help by adopting a military family through their Direct Mail program or by sending your coupons to their satellite location closest to you. Go to their donate page for more information. http://www.coupsfortroops.com/

Monday, January 30, 2012

Don't Pay a Fortune for Printer Ink. How I get mine for so much less!

I use a TON of printer ink. Here's how I get my ink for way less than most people.

First go thru your Big Crumbs account to get 19.6% cash back. (If you haven't signed up yet, do so here: bigcrumbs.com)

Then shop at 4inkjets.com where ink is up to 76% OFF regular store prices http://www.4inkjets.com/
To get cash back, start on the Big Crumbs home page and search for 4inkjets . Then click shop now.

You can also use coupon codes for an additional discount!!!! Most of the time there is a 10% OFF + FREE Shipping coupon code. Visit http://www.retailmenot.com/view/4inkjets.com to get an updated code!

"like" me on facebook for even MORE deals, tips and ways to help others! CLICK HERE and then click "like".

The Homeless Challenge

Below is an article that a friend of a friend wrote. In it she describes some of the problems with the system designed to help the people that need it most. I encourage all of you to read it. Sadly, homelessness amongst children is on a rapid rise. Often we might see someone on the side of the road and we automatically jump to the conclusion that they are lazy or have a drinking or drug problem. Yes, that may be the case at times, however, there are a lot of good honest people that really could use all the help they can find. Often the ones that need it the most are the ones that don't ask for it. Life took an unexpected turn, and they find themselves on the streets. Their poor children have lost their hope, and don't even expect better things to come their way. I ask you all to seek them out and help them in anyway. It could be a hot meal, clean clothes, a warm blanket, but most importantly give them hope. http://hamptonroads.com/2012/01/invisibility-cloak-homelessness

Imagine how hard it would be to live in a minivan for eight months, through heat and bitter cold, covered in hives, hygienically challenged, recoiling from reality so deeply that you rarely speak or eat. You slowly accept wearing the invisibility cloak of the chronically homeless.
That's not imaginary; that's Chelsea, 16, of Norfolk, and she's not the only one.
This past Christmas my family and friends embarked on a do-gooder mission to bring toys and food to a family in need. It wasn't Chelsea's family. She popped up on my radar at the last minute, via a website called Freecycle, where people normally trade objects and sometimes favors. Her mom's request: "A good meal for my daughter for Christmas Eve." We met in the parking lot of The Virginian-Pilot.
The mom thanked me as she swiftly packed bags into the van, which contained their worldly goods, plus blankets and pillows. She admitted the van had been home since June. Then they were gone. Something felt hinky.
This is not a heartwarming story about a mom in distress, but a child being raised as a homeless person. It's not Chelsea's fault that the adults in her life, for whatever reason, are unable to work within the system and make choices to provide for Chelsea. She is deserving but hard to help.
Homeless kids like Chelsea are ghosts in the scholastic machine, wandering in a post-traumatic stress-disorderly fog. They change, deteriorate, and nobody sees or recognizes it.
I didn't hear another word from the mom until just recently, when she emailed a thank-you note. I had to ask if they were living in the van and whether her daughter was in school.
Chelsea, she replied, attends a local high school but is barely eating, not speaking much and failing two classes. The mom said she'd heard Chelsea say to a friend that she wished she could see Hunter Hayes, a 20-year-old singer, at the NorVa next month. Just a wistful wish. Not a request. I filed it away as far easier than getting them a place to stay. Which would turn out to be accurate.
Two friends and I made a four-part plan for one Saturday: 1. Get mom and Chelsea to Norfolk Karate Academy to teach Chelsea self-defense/street safety. 2. Gather intel from mom. 3. Work phones to arrange services and shelter. 3. Feed them both. 4. Work a Nashville miracle with Hunter Hayes.
Our initial YWCA shelter plan fell apart rapidly. Mom has no money for gas, food, phone and limited access to a computer, but to get help she must deliver signed letters, drive to appointments and obtain documentation of her situation. That fairytale farm girl had a better chance of spinning straw into gold.
And despite my own tenacity, and with two of Norfolk's most formidable activist-moms at my side, within 48 hours we were all ready to cry with frustration over fatal glitches built into the systems charged with helping homeless kids.
You need a permanent address to send out a Child Protective Services team. You need to get a straight story out of mom or child. It takes more than establishing that a child has been living in a motor vehicle for months, has wasted away and is covered in sores.
When the shelter plan disintegrated, a For Kids benefactor paid for a hotel until Monday.
I called the management team of Hunter Hayes. Three hots and a cot are for prisoners. Homeless children deserve more.
The team instantly responded, on a Saturday, with two tickets and backstage passes for Chelsea. That made her almost smile, and it gave her something to focus on in the smothering fog of homelessness and cold.
That Monday, after a basic intake process that allowed them into emergency overnight care, Chelsea was back in the van. Her mom said she had freaked out at the prospect of being in a group shelter and chose a friend's home and the van in 34 degrees over a place full of strangers.
I wrote this story because kids like this aren't just falling through the cracks, they're crawling into them and getting comfortable, retreating from resources, like fugitives. Chelsea told us she could not understand why we were paying attention to her. "I'm not the only homeless kid at (my high school). Other kids need help more than I do."
I was moved by my friend Amy's reply: "You're the one I'm looking at right now."
Guest columnist Lisa Suhay is director of Norfolk Initiative for Chess Excellence and volunteers with The LiveSafe Foundation of Norfolk. Email: Lsuhays2@cox.net.

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Saturday, January 28, 2012

Help a Family in the Adoption Process

Kevin and Christy Kraus (Courtney, Caity, and Chloe too!)
The Krauses are adopting a little boy from Ethiopia (0-4 yrs.).  They are currently waiting for a referral from their agency, which they are anticipating to be several more months....but "God's timing is perfect!"  The financing they need is for travel...2 trips to Ethiopia....3 people on the first trip, 4 people on the 2nd trip. You can follow their story on their blog: http://www.tastinggodsgrace.blogspot.com/
They are selling cookbooks ($10 each) contact christy.kraus@gmail.com
You may purchase coffee with proceeds benefiting their adoption fund. https://justlovecoffee.com/about/beneficiary/thekrausfamily/
You can now make a tax deductible donation thru The Boaz Project. Just make sure you give them the Krauses full names http://www.boazproject.org/

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Friday, January 27, 2012

Experience Giving

Bethany Christian Services has designed a webpage that aims to help ease the donation process. They have many ways that you can help and all you have to do is click. Learn more here: http://giftcatalog.bethany.org/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=54&Itemid=107

Bethany Overview - Short from Bethany Christian Services on Vimeo.

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Help Earn FREE Books for Others

Read a book. Give a book.
Combining the joy of reading with the power of helping others

We Give Books offers over 100 children’s books that you can read for FREE with your child online. After you read it, they donate a book to one of several campaigns that you can choose from that give books to children than may not have them otherwise!

"like" me on facebook for even MORE deals, tips and ways to help others! CLICK HERE and then click "like".

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Make sure you look to the left of the posts at my various pages.
 I will be adding more and more to each of them as I learn about various ways to help. 

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Follow Changing the World Pebble by Pebble on Facebook

You can follow Changing the World Pebble by Pebble on Facebook for updates on ways to save and help others.

Click on the link above, or go to the left of the posts on my sidebar to "like" us on facebook.
Do not click on the image below, facebook keeps adding it to my post :( 

A New Hobby for Others

I never thought I'd have a blog. 
Being a private person I couldn't imagine what on Earth I'd share. 
Besides, who would want to read anything I have to say?
But then it dawned on me. I hadn't fully realized the potential found in a blog. 
Here sat an amazing way for me to change the world!
My goal is to use this blog to spread awareness of various causes, help individuals learn how to save money and resources, 
and inspire people to use what they have to help others. 
I may not be able to change the whole world, but I just might be able to affect a single pebble. 
My hope is to change the world pebble by pebble. 

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