how to stop poverty
Poverty in the world is a topic constantly present in the news, media and everyday life. With nearly half of the world’s population living on less than $1.25 a day, it can be discouraging to say the least when asking how to stop poverty.

Researchers estimate that it would take $60 billion annually to completely end poverty, which would only be a fourth of the income from the top richest billionaires in the world. But what can be done when there is not as much money to give? Fortunately, there are multiple ways every person can help end poverty.


The most common but just as helpful step is donating. Multiple websites accept donations to help end poverty. Websites such as Self Help Africa, Habitat for Humanity, and Save the Children use donations to help build new homes, provide clean water and food and help when disaster strikes.

Many of these organizations allow people to volunteer and work hands-on in the program, but if this isn’t an option, donating is a great way to help out. Try searching around for different organizations! There are a lot of programs that work on poverty, and they should state exactly where their donations go.

Talk to Your Representatives

Congress is made up of multiple representatives and senators from all over the country who are there to represent their constituents’ worries, wants and where they believe action should be taken. Calling your representative is a very simple action with huge impacts — plus it only takes about thirty seconds to complete!

You can find the representatives for your area right on the Borgen website. If talking on the phone is a bit stressful, emailing Congress works just as well! Email and/or call every week to continuously encourage Congress to support fighting poverty in foreign countries.

The representatives need to make note on what issues are called in about, and the more calls an issue gets, the more attention and action it will receive at the legislative level. 

Clean Out that Pantry and Closet!

No one likes clutter, but it can be difficult to motivate oneself to go through all of those old clothes in the closet. However, by donating, one can remember that it is all going to a good cause! Haven’t worn that sundress in a few years? Do those jeans just not fit right anymore? Give them to someone who could use them!

Sometimes it can be difficult to get rid of things that have sentimental value, but by donating you can be reassured that your old favorite outfit will have another life with someone who could really use it.

The exact same thing can be done with food as well! Check through the cupboards for non-perishable foods that you won’t use and give them to a food bank. This website can help locate the closest food shelf, their hours and how to contact them!

Buy Fair Trade products

There is an unfortunate and dangerous power imbalance between international trade and large corporations. Fair Trade Products, however, works on improving worker conditions, higher wage for the farmers and workers, and works against child and forced labor. The website also includes a list of products, brands and retailers certified under their name.

When asking how to stop poverty, simply switching up the brand of morning coffee or going to a different grocery store is one simple way to help farmers and workers get the living wage they deserve.

Demand Action

Poverty has been a huge crisis in the world for a very long time, and people often find themselves asking how they can stop it. While the question of how to stop poverty is a loaded one with multiple elements, there are little things that anyone can do everyday to help. Donating, volunteering, helping at a food shelf, switching coffee brands — all of these are ways that everyone can help.

As discussed, talking to local representatives and bringing their attention to important issues like poverty is a huge step to helping end it; but sometimes the task can be overwhelming. However, working together, getting involved and communicating with local government can all be catalyzed by just one person. Don’t be discouraged — demand action.

 – Marissa Wandzel

Photo: Pixabay

Where should I donate money
There are many charitable organizations that do good work when it comes to global poverty issues — almost too many, in fact. Thus it can be an overwhelming process when it comes to deciding where you want to donate your money, and that all depends on the global poverty issues that matter most to you. Are you interested in serving global health issues? Finding technology and solutions? Maybe you want your money to go toward global education and businesses. What’s important is finding where your passion is in the deep pool of global poverty issues, and that will make it a little easier in deciding where you’d like to donate your money.


3 Places Where You Might Want to Donate to


1. The Adventure Project

With a focus on businesses, The Adventure Project helps families escape global poverty by recruiting local people to become entrepreneurs. By teaching them how to sell products and services to their communities, they become pioneers in their own local economies to help everyone venture forward. Your donations will have a transformative impact by providing local partners the means to educate and support people living in poverty so they may become profitable entrepreneurs. Thirty dollars can fund one month of job training, and with $360, you can fund someone’s chance to have a business for an entire year.

2. The Girl Effect

Launched in 2008, The Girl Effect began its unique movement empowering adolescent girls to end poverty for themselves, their families and their communities. By providing girls with powerful resources and investing in development practitioners who are committed to advocating for female empowerment, there is a better chance of preventing global health issues, such as child marriage, HIV/AIDS and teen pregnancy. With 250 million adolescent girls living in poverty, why wouldn’t you invest in this global poverty issue? The Girl Effect is created by the Nike Foundation in collaboration with the NoVo Foundation, United Nations Foundation and Coalition for Adolescent Girls.

3. One Day’s Wages

It all started when two people fell in love in Seattle and decided to donate their 2009 income to alleviate global poverty. Eugene and Minchee Cho took it one step further by encouraging families and friends to donate their “one day’s wages” and be part of a global grassroots movement of people who are committed to renewing their pledge monthly, quarterly, yearly or even on their birthdays. One Day’s Wages promotes and provides sustainable solutions through partnerships and small organizations in developing regions. Your donations directly enable the Board and Staff to fund small NGOs and CBOs to invest in people and communities in the developing regions.

Chelsee Yee

Sources: The Adventure Project, Girl Effect, One Day’s Wages


“The Borgen Project is an incredible nonprofit organization that is addressing poverty and hunger and working towards ending them.”
– The Huffington Post


Learn about The Borgen Project


how much should I donate
How much should I donate? It’s a common question. Even if you have sworn off Facebook and eschew trendy news sites, you have most likely heard about or even witnessed the Ice Bucket Challenge, a social media craze that has resulted in more than $10 million being raised for the ALS Association. The nonprofit, which devotes its time and money to resolving amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (otherwise called Lou Gherig’s Disease), is benefiting from a challenge that tasks participants with donating $100 to ALS or pouring a bucket of ice water on themselves.

While people may simply relish vaguely altruistic deeds or experience a rush from partaking in the same event as Bill Gates and Kermit the Frog, contributing to the Ice Bucket Challenge can accomplish both an admirable goal and leave you better off financially at the end of the year.

The ALS Association’s designation as a 501(c)(3) charitable organization enables people to write off their monetary contributions on their tax forms. While there are numerous rules dictating how much you can donate, as long as the donations are made to the right organization, you can receive a significant tax break.

Let’s say you make $30,000 for your Adjusted Gross Income, or AGI, or net income. If you make a $15,000 monetary donation to the ALS, you can deduct $15,000 from your taxable income/AGI.

Still not clear? Let’s delve a little further. Your AGI is separated into different brackets. The amount you are taxed depends on your marital status, whether you are filing jointly and if you are the head of the household. For our purposes, you are single and making $30,000, slightly greater than the per capita average income from 2008-2012 in the U.S.. Using the tax percentages from 2011, you would pay 10 percent of the first $8,500 and 15 percent for the next $21,500. That means you owe $4,075 in taxes this year.

If you included a $15,000 cash donation to an eligible charity, the greatest amount possible, you would decrease your AGI to $15,000. Overall you would now owe $1,825 in taxes. While you don’t receive a 1:1 tax reduction for charitable donations, Trent Hamm from The Simple Dollar calculates that donations lead to a 25 percent return.

While donating fifty percent of your income to a charity may be a reach, keeping track of all your small donations throughout the year can add up. If you have ever donated old clothes to Goodwill, books to a library or money to a church, you can write them off as charitable contributions so long as you provide documentation.

There are many, many rules to tax-deductible charitable donations, the most important of which is determining a charity’s eligibility. Generally churches, nonprofits and any organization bearing a 501(c)(3) designation qualify as recipients. If you are still unsure, the IRS provides a search tool that documents which organizations are eligible to receive tax-deductible charitable contributions.

There are also rules about how much you can donate. As discussed previously, cash donations to public organizations may reach up to 50 percent of your AGI. Any additional donations can carry forward for up to five years. Private organizations have different rules and may only constitute 30 percent of your AGI.

For non-cash donations, the IRS permits goods in “good condition or better” to be deducted at their fair market value or the price at which both the buyer and seller agree.

Documentation is needed in these instances as well. Even if you give money, stocks or used goods to a qualified organization, you must provide an itemized list of the donations, proof that the transaction occurred and acknowledgement from the receiving organization if the price of the item exceeds more than $250. Items in excess of $500 must file form IRS Form 8283. Donations in excess of $5,000 may require a qualified professional to appraise their value.

Finally, motive plays a factor. Forbes journalist Tony Nitti wrote an article that examines donor intent and tax breaks. He assures readers that as long as the amount you deduct from your taxes does not exceed the benefits received from donating in the first place you are fine. For example, if you donated $100 to a charity dinner, but the dinner itself was worth $50, then the most you could deduct would be $50, not $100.

Donations to charities may seem like a desirable but imprudent decision to many people. However, if executed wisely and documented clearly, donations can benefit both the donor and the recipient. In short, you can donate however much you would like to charities, but do your research first if you want to guarantee a return on your taxes.

Emily Bajet

Sources: ALS Association, How Stuff Works, IRS 1, IRS 2, Charity Navigator, TurboTax, MoneyChimp, The Simple Dollar, U.S. Census, Forbes, About Money
Photo: which country?

The image of the starving college student or struggling young adult seems to juxtapose the image of a citizen willing to give part of their hard-earned salary to nonprofit organizations. However, the Millennials (roughly described as those born between 1979 and 1994) are actually more willing to give to causes they believe in than you would think. Although only seven percent of adults believe that the younger generation is more generous than the previous ones, statistics have shown that Millennials have been unselfish in donating both their time and money.

In 2011, 75% of young people aged 20-35 donated monetarily, 63% donated their time and 70% raised money for nonprofit organizations. In 2012, this increased to 83% that donated financially to an organization while 52% were interested in monthly donating.

We ask ourselves though, what is the motivation driving the younger generation to give? According to a report composed by Achieve titled “The 2013 Millennial Impact Report,” the top four reasons are:

  • They are passionate about a cause or issue.
  • They feel like they can make a difference.
  •  Getting involved gives them an opportunity to connect and network with like-minded people.
  • They can utilize their professional skills and expertise to help others.

Although it was found that the younger generation give relatively small amounts, this can actually be positive because it means they are more concerned in seeing the efficacy of each dollar donated.

“If they can give, I can too!”

You’re absolutely right! There are so many ways to give back to organizations both in your community and internationally:

  • Make a list of causes you care about and set aside a predetermined amount per year you plan to donate.
  • Give clothes you haven’t worn in years or clothes you don’t need to charity.
  • Sell items you don’t use on EBay or host a yard sale and give the profits to a cause you care about.
  • Find volunteer opportunities near you. ( is a great place to start!)
  • If an organization doesn’t already exist for the cause you care about, create your own nonprofit.

The reasons to give are endless. Even donating a small amount can give you a sense of community when you see the collective efforts of your small donation combined with the donations of others all contributing to a larger cause. Donating any amount makes you more grateful for what you have, and you are given a sense of wealth by being able to share what little you have with others.

When you donate, it inspires those around you to donate, too. Create a movement among your friends to volunteer together, or pool your money for a cause you all care deeply about and see the effects of your efforts working to make the world a better place.

Whether it’s providing people in developing countries with water, donating to breast cancer research or volunteering at a local soup kitchen, get involved and know that even the smallest donation of time or money can help.

– Kimberly Tierney

Sources: Family Share, Huffington Post, Millennial Impact Report, Philanthropy, Stay Classy, USA Today, U.S. News, World Vision

Photo: Chillicothe

5 Easy Resolutions to Make a Difference in 2014
Once again, the end of the year is fast approaching and entertainment media is filled with encouraging epithets for the coming year. Titles like 2014 is Your Year and Achieve Your New Year Weight Loss Resolution headlines grace magazine racks in grocery stores nationwide.

Each year, millions of Americans make superficial promises to themselves from losing weight to paying off college loans. Often, these goals are made with the utmost level of optimism and determination but after several weeks, motivation wans and soon, the dumbbells lie in the corner, forgotten.

But, what if you could achieve every resolution made for the coming year without the expected time commitment or sweat stains? If you are determined to do everything you set your mind to this year then this list is for you. Here are 5 easy resolutions to achieve while give something back in the process.

1. Shop More

The New Year is the perfect time of year to reinvent yourself. Wanting to try a new look but not sure if you want to make the jump? Do it. Clean out the closet and donate to a nearby clothes drive. Just because the holidays are over, does not mean that winter is. Thousands of individuals worldwide are in need of warm clothes.

And remember to say yes when the cashier asks for a donation at the department store.

2. Make Time for Yourself

The long holiday season can make the most organized party planner stressed. Make sure you take time to decompress before returning to the normal 9 to 5 struggle. Relax. Go to the movies. Take a walk. Don’t have the extra time? Make normal activities exciting, even showering. Philosophy’s line of bath products provide the perfect sensory vacation.

The newest addition, To Believe, is a blend of cranberry and currant  — additionally, each purchase goes to whyhunger, an organization committed to ending world hunger.

3. Have a Playdate

Work days can drag on forever. Remember to take small breaks. Stand up and stretch. Take a second to stop by the coffee machine. If you feel confined, don’t be afraid to take your break outside. Still bored? Play a game.

Between iTunes and Google Play, there are thousands of apps and games to occupy your time. Some apps even allow you to donate to a charity, for free.

And the internet is full of great sites like, which allows players to complete crosswords to earn money for a cause.

4. Pack Extra for a Trip

Have a trip coming up in the new year but don’t know what to pack? No worries.

International nonprofit, Pack for a Purpose, tracks children in need around the world. So whether you are traveling for business or pleasure, they will tell you exactly what to toss in your suitcase. A global partner to hotel chains worldwide, donors only have to drop off a suggested item upon check-in.

5. Put Unlimited Texting to Good Use

Due to the overwhelming use of social media, nonprofit organizations have become as tech savvy as global corporations. Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Instagram and other sites have become standard in marketing practices across the board. Phone companies have also joined the movement, as potential donors can merely text a company in order to make a donation.

In short, making a difference is only as hard or simple as you want it to be. So, challenge yourself to change the world, it may only take one click.

– Jasmine D. Smith

Sources: PhilosophyCharitiiPack for a Purpose
Photo: Vintage 3D

10 Ways to Make a Difference
The world is a big place filled with billions of people. It is easy to think that one person can’t possibly do enough to change the world. When the weight of global issues simply feels too huge for one person to handle, we have to remember that we do have power to make a difference, even if it starts on a small scale. Listed below are 10 ways to make a difference that may not change the whole world, but will be sure to change someone else’s world.


Do Good: 10 Ways to Make a Difference


1. Smile! Being friendly to others is a great way to brighten someone else’s day. Whether it’s at the store, work, or simply walking along the street, a nice gesture like a smile could go a long way for someone having a bad day.

2. Do Some Volunteer Work. Volunteering is an amazing experience that gets us out of our daily routines, and makes us turn our efforts outwards. Go out and help feed the homeless, volunteer at local events, even picking up trash in your city is a great way to give back to the community!

3. Sponsor a Child. There are tons of organizations looking for people to sponsor children in need in countries around the world. These organizations are literally only a click away, and don’t take much time to sign up for. It is a small price to pay to make an incredible difference in a child’s life.

4. Invest and Listen. Society has become so drenched in the buzz of technology that real face-to-face interaction and relationship is growing scarce. Next time you throw out the standard, “Hi, how you doin?” make an effort to really invest in what is going in that person’s life. Ask questions that show you really care and want to listen.

5. Teach! Go out and teach a skill to someone who wants to learn. Whether it’s teaching someone how to drive, or helping a student with their homework, your lessons will make a huge impact on their lives.

6. Donate. If you’re anything like the typical American, you have a lot of stuff. When it comes time to get rid of something or buy something new, make a donation instead! There are many ways to make donations online and in your community.

7. Stop What You’re Doing and HELP. It’s easy to think that our priorities are the ones that matter the most. When you’re driving and see someone along the road struggling with a flat, stop to help. Wouldn’t you want a person to do the same for you? There are tons of ways for us to lend a helping hand throughout our day.

8. Team Up with Someone to Live Healthier. Oftentimes having a workout partner is the best kind of motivation out there. If someone you know keeps talking about how he/she wants to get in shape, join them! This will make a huge impact on their lives, and together, you’ll both be on your way to a healthier life.

9. Make a Care Package. Care packages are easy and affordable to make, and they can be used in so many different ways. They can be sent overseas, or used locally! Next time you’re out and about and see a homeless person with a sign offer them a care package. The packages are great to keep a supply of in your car, and they go a long way.

10. Have an Outward Gaze. We live in a pretty self-centered society. Many of us are taught at a young age to do what is going to make us most successful; this can lead us to do a lot things that are only self-serving. It’s time for a change of perspective! Start thinking in ways that turn that self-centered gaze outward. See what it’s like to put others’ needs before yours. You won’t regret it.

– Chante Owens

Sources: Zen Habits, Forbes
Photo: Compassion

States That Give The Most
Last year The Chronicle of Philanthropy published a list of the most charitable U.S. states based on total donations, but another way to find the states that give the most is through tax deductions. The Tax Foundation did just that with more recent tax data from 2011 to see how the numbers compare with the Chronicle‘s study.

1. Maryland: This was the state that gave back the most, according to the Tax Foundation’s study, with 40.1% of tax returns in Maryland including a charitable deduction. The total state donations amounted to $3.9 billion, or approximately $2,969 per taxpayer.

2. New Jersey: 36% of taxpayers in this state deducted a donation to charity in 2011, creating a total of $4.5 billion of donations and a median amount of $2,181.

3. Connecticut: In a very close third place, this state had 35.9% of their taxpayers deduct charity donations on their tax returns, which amounted to $2.3 billion and a median of $1,916 per person.

4. Utah: 33.1% of Utah resident taxpayers donated to charity, giving back a total of $2.4 billion, which is a whopping $5,255 median contribution per taxpayer.

5. Minnesota: In this state, 32.7% of taxpayers noted a deduction for charity on their returns, creating a total of $2.6 billion of donations and a median contribution amount of $2,213.

6. Virginia: In another close rank, 32.5% of Virginia taxpayers deducted a donation for charity, totaling $4.2 billion and a median amount of $2,790 per taxpayer.

There are a few things to note after viewing this short list of the states that give the most. One is that the list is compiled based on the percentage of people who donate even a small amount, not the amount that the state donates as a total. Another is that the numbers in this list include donations from companies as well, and a third consideration is that the only money counted was that from itemized deductions, not standard deductions, which could affect the total amounts.

Of the six states in this list, only two of them (Utah and Maryland) also made to The Chronicle of Philanthropy‘s top ten list of states that donate the most.

Katie Brockman

Sources Daily Finance, The Chronicle of Philanthropy

Help Disaster Victims
The massive tornado in Oklahoma devastated thousands, and many people around the country wanted to do what they could to help disaster victims. But, unfortunately, the days after a major disaster or crisis are when the scam organizations arise, trying to lure innocent do-gooders into donating to their fake charity. Here are six ways to make sure you are doing the best for those you are trying to help.

1. Look up the charity on one of these sites (Wise Giving AllianceCharity NavigatorGuidestar or Charity Watch) and see what experts think about it. This way you can be certain that the organization you choose is reputable and honest about the donations they receive.

2. Find a charity that has done this a few times. Small, local charities may mean well, but they may not have the best resources to get your donation to the people who need it as efficiently as a larger organization that has faced major disasters before.

3. Designate where you want your donation to go. If you want your money to help rebuild homes, provide food, or buy clothing, specify when you send it to the organization.

4. Send money, not supplies. Although it may seem more helpful to send food, clothes, or toys to disaster victims, it just makes it harder for the charity to sort out and distribute the items. If you have items that you need to get rid of anyway, try selling them and donating the money instead.

5. Avoid donating to people who send mail or emails claiming to be disaster victims. Unless you know them personally, don’t trust them. It’s much safer to simply donate to a reputable charity.

6. If you choose to donate online, do it through the charity’s website, not social media. After Hurricane Katrina, the FBI reported more than 2,400 fake websites that tried to scam money from well-meaning donors. Your best bet is to donate directly through the organization’s website, which is much more trustworthy.

Katie Brockman
Source: Forbes

Girl-writing-call_congress_letter_to_editor_community_involvement_opt (1)
Global poverty is an international issue, and because of its scope helping the poor can often seem like an insurmountable problem. However, if everyone one person devoted to the cause could take 5 or 10 minutes to make an effort and get involved, the solution to poverty wouldn’t seem so out of reach. Here are some simple ways to make a difference:

1. Call or Write Congress

The power of free speech is often underestimated; when in reality congressional leaders often support poverty-reduction legislation when as few as 7 to 10 people in their district contact them in support of it. Calling your leaders each week only takes up to a minute out of your schedule – all you need to say is that you are calling to support funding for USAID or poverty-focused aid. Simple as that!

2. Donate to the Cause

There are many ways to donate either time or money – instead of birthday or graduation presents, ask for donations. Set up a fundraiser with your local bakery. Volunteer and donate your time to aid organizations. The options are endless.

3. Spread the Word

In order to solve a global problem, it is important to have a global presence. Whether through flier posting, blogging, or word of mouth, make sure to educate those around you to the trials of those in poverty and the simplicity of the solution. Encourage others to call their congressional leaders in order to have the most impact on foreign aid legislation. It’s as easy as posting a link with the information to your social media accounts.

Being an active member of the movement to eradicate poverty is incredibly important; and the more people that get interested and involved, the faster the government will take note and put more poverty-focused aid into legislation. It’s quick and simple, so why not take a minute to call right now?

-Sarah Rybak
Source: The Borgen Project
Photo: The Ambrose School


The Donate to the Global Poverty Campaign

Donate Global Poverty is a campaign aimed at getting everyone to contribute to help fight global poverty. Far too many people go through life thinking they’ll donate to global poverty later. We started asking, what if everyone just donated to global poverty now? If everyone does a little the impact would be amazing, so donate to global poverty now!


* Email is used to send a tax-deduction receipt. Email addresses will not be sold or shared with third parties.

To Donate by Mail:

 The Borgen Project
1416 NW 46th St Ste 105 PMB 145
Seattle, WA 98107


We appreciate your donation to the global poverty fight. The Borgen Project is a 501 (c)(3) tax-deductible nonprofit organization (EIN 20-0536470). The organization is located in Seattle, email [email protected] or call 206-471-4148 to arrange a tour of the office!

4818 14th Ave NW, Suite 7, Seattle, WA 98107


A child suffering from cholera receives emergency treatment at a center funded by the United States. The Borgen Project works with U.S. leaders to ensure funding for such programs are protected. (Source USAID)

A child suffering from cholera receives emergency treatment at a center funded by the United States. The Borgen Project works with U.S. leaders to ensure funding for such programs are protected. (Source USAID)


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“Having made tremendous strides on behalf of impoverished families throughout the world, I applaud The Borgen Project for its tireless commitment to ending global poverty. Through strategic advocacy and public education, you are helping to shape U.S. policy for the betterment of mankind. We are proud to be home to visionary groups like The Borgen Project. You represent the best of who we are as a state and as a people – insightful thinkers, proactive leaders and inspiring problem-solvers, who are committed to redefining what is possible and, ultimately, to changing the world.”

– Gov. Jay Inslee (WA)



The Borgen Project received the Gold Star Seal of Transparency from GuideStar, the world’s largest source of information on nonprofit organizations. Read the entire GuideStar profile of The Borgen Project.




Thank you for your donation to help those living in extreme poverty!

* Email is used to send a tax-deduction receipt. Email addresses will not be sold or shared with third parties.

A child suffering from cholera receives emergency treatment at a center funded by the United States. The Borgen Project works with U.S. leaders to ensure funding for such programs are protected. (Source USAID)

A child suffering from cholera receives emergency treatment at a center funded by the United States. The Borgen Project works with U.S. leaders to ensure funding for such programs are protected. (Source USAID)

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Donate by Mail
The Borgen Project
2661 N Pearl St PMB #442
Tacoma, WA 98407

We appreciate your donation to the global poverty fight. The Borgen Project is a 501 (c)(3) tax-deductible nonprofit organization (EIN 20-0536470). The organization is located in Tacoma, WA. Email [email protected] or call 253-300-0451 to arrange a tour of the office!

1120 Pacific Ave Ste 100 Tacoma, WA 98402

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The Borgen Project

We fight for the underdog

The Borgen Project

We fight for the underdog


The Borgen Project believes that leaders of the most powerful nation on earth should be doing more to address global poverty. We’re the innovative, national campaign that is working to make poverty a focus of U.S. foreign policy.

Quick Ways to Help

1. Email Congress
2. Donate


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