search results for 'charity'

charity, second quarter 2006

when i first started with mysql, i also started giving about 10% of my pre-tax earnings to charity. first it was three charities a month (local, national, and international) and then one charity a month (cycling between local, national, and international) and now i’m stepping back to quarterly donations — all local. i’m also a little behind schedule. between planning a wedding, moving, and everything else going on, it’s been too easy to put this off.

this first quarterly donation would have gone to the laura esguerra adams foundation, but it’s still not quite up-and-running. so i’ve given it to the library foundation of los angeles as a memorial to laura, directed towards the adult literacy program that she was involved with.

don’t try this at home: culinary catastrophes from the world’s greatest chefs by kimberly witherspoon and andrew friedman (editors) is a collection of essays and stories from a number of chefs, as you might have guessed from the sub-title. they are pretty consistently great, and most of them are also very funny.

one story is from the execute chef/founders at downtown’s ciudad, mary sue milliken and susan feniger, and is about a disaster they had on their way to cater part of a charity event at the biltmore hotel. like many of the stories in the book, it will make you happy you weren’t on the tasting end of that particular meal.

charity, march 2006

library foundation of los angeles it’s back to the library foundation of los angeles again, where i’m actually paying off part of a multi-year pledge.

i ♥ the library.

charity, february 2006

los angeles conservancy i’m on autopilot for a few months (if not the whole year), so my monthly charity contribution this month has gone to the los angeles conservancy to renew my membership.

charity, january 2006

médecins sans frontières (doctors without borders) last year, i gave to médecins sans frontières (doctors without borders) at this time of year because of the tsunami in south asia. thankfully, there’s no tragedy motivating me this month, just the belief that it is a great organization that deserves support.

charity, december 2005

toys for tots i had a vague idea of being more clever this december, but as i see the time on the month tick away, the obvious choice of the marine toys for tots foundation has become the easiest way out.

charity, november 2005

childrens hospital los angeles childrens hospital los angeles was the charity i made reference to back in october. they were supposed to send me some information about their donor programs, but never did, and yet i’m giving them money anyway. i’m so easy.

this is the fourth year in a row that i’ve been able to give money to the childrens hospital.

they also handle platelet donations, which you may have heard some people go on about.

i can’t tell if i’m a kingpin or a pauper

10 over 100 is a new website from james hong (of hot or not infamy) and josh blumenstock, an employee at hot or not, where people are encouraged to pledge 10% of their income over $100,000 to charity. the new york times had an article about what inspired it (via evhead).

i signed up, but i’m not sure that it is entirely meaningful. i already donate 10% of what i make to charity, and i make less than $100,000. i guess that makes me part of the “10 over 0” club.

someone asked me recently what i spend money on (after i said something about me being cheap), and the obvious answer of “give it away” didn’t occur to me. oops.

charity, october 2005

los angeles regional foodbank i actually had another charity in mind for this month, but will be postponing to that until next month while i wait for some information from them. instead, i’m bumping up what would have been next month’s contribution to the los angeles regional foodbank.

i like the payoff of the little dust-up between penny arcade and an anti-games moralizer who had his bluff called.

oh, i’m not doing the tax-refund-charity thing this year. instead, i decided back in february to just increase the amount i gave each month. i do still have another donation to make from the yahoo money.

more charity mail

the different levels of sponsorship for the event at st. vibiana’s is kind of humorous in that it becomes more expensive per-person at each level. (but those different levels also include different perks other than additional admissions — presumably you can just buy a block of individual tickets, too.)

also, yesterday i got a newsletter from amnesty international.

more charity mail

i think i forgot to check my mail on wednesday. so this may be two day’s worth:

the literary odyssey dinners sound kind of cool — it is a bunch of 16-40 person dinners with various authors in different sponsor’s homes. a few authors that caught me eye: michael eisner, gil garcetti, larry gelbart, thomas keller, and stan lee. each of the dinners has a different dress code. here’s the varieties:

i want to host one of these just so i can specify “pants optional.”

oh, and my regrowth charity t-shirt arrived, too.

you’ve got mail

i think i need to just pick a month and write up what charity-related mail i get every day. today it was habitat for humanity and project angel food wanting money, and an invite for the next installment of the gregory peck reading series with sharon stone and james woods.

i shouldn’t complain too much — if it weren’t for charity-related mails and mail for the previous tenants, i wouldn’t get mail on most days.

and as far as charity events go, the stay home & read a book ball is more my speed. (and i’ve got the wardrobe for it.)

charity, september 2005

this should be no shock: this month i’ve sent my usual monthly charitable donation to the red cross for the hurricane katrina relief efforts.

charity, august 2005

la’s best right before the school year starts seems like an opportune time to give money to la’s best, which is an after-school enrichment program in the city of los angeles.

charity, july 2005

institute for justice happy independence day! it seems like a very appropriate time to make a contribution to the institute for justice, which litigates to protect various freedoms.

and once again, i’m contributing to a recent supreme court loser: the institute was involved in kelo v. new london, which has cleared the way for government to use its eminent domain powers to take property from its owner (paying “just compensation”) and give it to another private developer.

charity, june 2005

i actually remembered to make it to the hope for firefighters event in downtown los angeles last week, unlike last year. i got there late, so i missed the competitions and my food choices were limited, but i still got some great food from one of the booths that hadn’t run out.

so in honor of that event, i’ve sent my monthly charity contribution to the los angeles firemen’s relief organization for the widows, orphans, and disabled firemen’s fund.

this weekend i’ll be participating in l.a. works day, and if you hurry, you can register. you can even get the registration fee covered by following the link on the front page there about joining the los angeles downtown news team.

charity, may 2005

inner-city arts i’ve gone local again, with inner-city arts, an arts center for kids in downtown los angeles.

one thing that focusing on local charities gets me is various invitations to events by these charities, sometimes for events that require buying tickets (at steep prices, usually) and sometimes for free. maybe some day i’ll start taking advantage of this.

for example, through the library foundation of los angeles i got an invite for a reception, “author program,” book signing, and dinner with michael eisner in the middle of june. it’s for his book, camp. the dinner is at the california club, jacket and tie required.

i don’t even own a jacket. at least not the kind they’re talking about. i don’t think they’d count my ffem windbreaker.

charity, april 2005

i’m on a roll with local charities, so i’ve continued the streak with a donation to the midnight mission, which just last week opened their new facility a few blocks from their old one (which i can see out my window).

a few weeks ago one of the alôud sessions at the central library was with sam davis, author of designing for the homeless: architecture that works, who has steadily worked his way down the economic ladder in his architecture — his previous book was the architecture of affordable housing. it was an interesting perspective on the homeless problem, and i was sitting amidst a number of people from dome village who had a fairly negative take on the larger missions in los angeles. but i guess one important bit of knowledge i took away from that is that it is going to require a range of solutions to tackle the homeless problem, and it is good to see it being attacked by considerate and considered people.

charity, march 2005

keeping it local for another month, i’ve renewed (and upgraded) my membership in the library foundation of los angeles.

going to events at the central library is a pretty regular occurrence for me now. last week i went to both alôud events: talks by jordan fisher smith, a former park ranger whose book nature noir: a park ranger’s patrol in the sierra must be amazing, and by james b. stewart, author of disneywar, another book that sounds fascinating. i’ve got holds on both books (although there’s a long queue for disneywar).

charity, february 2005

los angeles conservancy i forgot to mention this back when i did it, but i joined the los angeles conservancy earlier in the month. (last month, now.) so this was the form of my monthly charitable contribution (most of it is tax-deductible).

i have to remember to sign up for the downtown walking tour docent program at the end of the year.

this puts me on the mailing list of another organization that occassionally hosts various events. maybe some day i’ll actually go to one. (but not the $750-a-head library foundation thing. yikes!)

charity, january 2005

médecins sans frontières (doctors without borders) with large tragedies like the indian ocean tsunami, charities can get so deluged with donations that are earmarked for disaster relief for that incident that they say they’ve had enough. if you recall, the american red cross got in a bit of trouble after they said they were going to to put excess donations targeted for 9/11 relief towards their general disaster-relief fund. just to throw the number out there, the american red cross eventually raised over $1 billion for their 9/11 fund. they plan to raise no more than $400 million for tsunami victims, and have currently gotten $150 million pledged.

so although it is motivated by world events, my donation this month to médecins sans frontières (doctors without borders) is done just as a general donation, and not earmarked for anything specific. it’s an organization that does great stuff all over the world, and i’m happy to see them put my money towards the place they think needs it most. they certainly know far more about providing medical care all over the world than i do.

i’m also kicking in the daily-journal money that would have gone to reading is fundamental, a hefty $150. i really slacked off during the holidays.

charity, december 2004

toys for tots this is a break from the local/national/international cycle, and coming rather late in the month, but my charitable donation for this month is going to the marine toys for tots foundation.

also, i paid out $50 to reading is fundamental for days i failed to add to my daily journal/sketchbook. yes, i missed five of the thirteen days i was doing this last month. i'm doing about the same this month, but getting better as the month goes on. a lot of the entries recently have simply been me freeze-framing something on television, usually a cartoon character, and copying it. none of it is very good, but that was never the point. i’ve drawn more in the last few weeks than i had since grade school.

i did the math the other day, and over the span of my netflix membership (since june 2000!), it has cost me a little around $4.50 per rental. it’s the last year that has really driven up my per-rental cost, between the temporarily increased rates and my slowdown in watching movies.

doing this sort of monetary math can be entertaining. here’s another one: if i assume that the car i owned for about 11 years cost about $9000 new, that means it cost just about $2.25 per day. just to own it: that doesn’t include gas, maintenance, or insurance. that’s more than i would have expected for a car that was pretty modest, and i had for a relatively long time.

i really should take another pass at doing a breakdown of how i’m spending my money. it’s been a few years since i last did it. all i have right now is this vague knowledge that i have a positive cash flow. (the biggest expenses are pretty easy: taxes, rent, and charity. those three alone soak up 60% of my paycheck. actually less, since my withholding was too high for most of the year.)

2003 tax refund charity

harvey mudd college this is coming very late in the year, because i filed very late in the year and only just today received my federal tax refund, but i have the portion of my refund from the 2003 tax year that i’ll be giving away in an envelope ready to be mailed.

harvey mudd college, which i somehow escaped from with a degree, is the beneficiary this year (again). the donation is earmarked for student scholarships.

charity, november 2004

america’s second harvest as foretold last month, america’s second harvest was this month’s charity of choice.

i suppose i’ve never written why it is that i give so much and so often to charity. what was interesting when getting my taxes done is that the accountant nailed it — it is tithing. but being a non-religious person, i obviously don’t tithe to a church.

it’s the sort of thing that i think is important when people are tithing to churches that preach fear and hatred, and do not have good works as an essential part of their mission — the sort of churches that drove massive turnout and resulted in 11 states preventing gay couples from having the same rights as married couples. (i’m not saying that all churches preach fear and hatred, or that there aren’t churches that have good works as an essential part of what they do. but keep in mind i’m working from a non-secular definition of good works: faith and evangelism aren’t included. obviously i don’t agree with luther here.)

charity, october 2004

los angeles regional foodbank i think this is a self-explanatory one, with thanksgiving and the other holidays right around the corner: los angeles regional foodbank.

unless i forget, i’ll make a similar donation next month to a similar national charity.

charitable contributions, as percentage of adjusted gross income (tax year 2003 edition)

the cheneys beat me out by donating almost all of the royalties from mrs. cheney’s books to charity. (data for everyone who is not me comes from tax history project.)

and yes, that 23.9% is pretty absurdly high. that’s the result of turning around and donating most of last year’s tax refund to charity, and donating my used car to the eff. i suspect i’ll be back below the teens again for 2004.

charity, september 2004

acción international writing about the amount of charity solicitations i got seems to have delayed my september charity giving. not any longer, with my donation to acción international just made. they make microloans throughout the world.

i’m thinking of scaling back my giving to just be quarterly (but not in scale). that would mean giving more money to fewer charities. probably: electronic frontier foundation, library foundation of los angeles, harvey mudd college, and something else. but there’s too many to choose from. maybe i’ll go bimonthly.

interesting: “charity” tagged items.

today’s charity solicitations

handwritten charity solicitations

apparently i’ve tripped the level of donating enough to several charities that i get the handwritten solicitations for money instead of just the standard bulk-mailed ones. i don’t believe that charles lyons of unicef or bill noce of childrens hospital los angeles actually hand-wrote either note, but it is interesting to see how different organizations react to different levels of contribution. (as another data point, i have never once been solicited by the electronic frontier foundation, although it is the charity to which i have contributed the most.)

charity, august 2004

southern poverty law center if you’re getting a sense of déjà vu, it is because i also gave money to the southern poverty law center in august 2003. (and if you’re really keeping track, august 2002, too.)

i think one reason i’ve been a faithful supporter of the splc is that they send what i consider to be a reasonable amount of fundraising literature, but also the really great intelligence report magazine. they are guilty of doing the silly ploy of having the forms with the donation levels that are based on your previous contribution. (so the smallest one is the same as your previous contribution, the middle one is 1.5× that, and the high amount is double.)

recently the world wildlife fund has been getting on my nerves by sending what seem to be weekly brochures for their travel program.

charity, july 2004

childrens hospital los angeles another month, another charity. in this case, the same charity i donated to this month last year: childrens hospital los angeles.

another charity worth checking out (i’ll get to it in september): accion international.

charity, june 2004

international primte protection league it’s almost hard to believe that i’ve gone this long without donating to an organization like the international primate protection league. but i’ve rectified that this month. the check is, as they say, in the mail.

corporate ethics and charity

this article by michael “moneyball” lewis in the new york times addresses the issue of how public and private companies deal with the pressure to make money. it’s a great article — tying together the google ipo, a business ethics course at uc berkeley, and the charitable works of birkenstock usa.

charity, april and may 2004

children’s museum of los angelesthis check actually went in the mail yesterday, so i made it just under the wire. the donation was for the children’s museum of los angeles which is pushing towards breaking ground on their new facility by next year.

i may as well go ahead and get may out of way now, too. i can finally complete my circuit of the service-related charities by contributing to army emergency relief. it’s probably as timely a contribution as ever, given the ongoing events in iraq and afghanistan.

charity, march 2004

solar electric light fund i almost let it slip out of the month again, but this month i’ve contributed to the solar electric light fund.

i have to say i was inspired by the beautiful spring weather — it seemed like an appropriate time to give to a environment-related charity. i originally was looking for a good international land conservation charity, but the best ones i found (world land trust and fauna & flora international) are both uk-based, and contributions wouldn’t have been tax-deductible.

charity, january and february 2004

air force aid society speaking of deductions, i completely missed doing my charitable contribution for last month. so here’s two at one time:

downtown business idea

there are a number of old theaters in the downtown area (mostly on broadway). turn some of them into single-screen movie theaters using digital projection. the first one to set up would be a theater that shows spanish-language films. (why doesn’t los angeles have any theaters that do that?)

i bet it’s an idea you could get robert rodriguez to invest in.

if only i were a business school student looking for a business idea to develop as part of my studies.

in fact, the los angeles conservancy has a broadway initiative to develop the area. hmm, i think i’m due for a donation to a local charity….

charity, december 2003

operation give: toys for iraq i got a jump on things this month: my monthly charitable contribution is in the mail to operation give. the organization actually started from the blog of a member of the army national guard who is stationed in iraq. the spokesman for operation give is gail halverson, better known as the “candybomber” for dropping candy to german children during the berlin airlift.

charity, november 2003

america’s second harvest since this is november, america’s second harvest was a rather obvious choice. here’s the what’s what from their site:

America’s Second Harvest is the nation’s largest domestic hunger-relief organization with a national network of more than 200 regional food banks and food-rescue programs, serving all 50 states and Puerto Rico. It distributes 1.4 billion pounds of donated food and grocery products annually. America’s Second Harvest’s network supports approximately 50,000 local charitable agencies, operating more than 94,000 food programs, including food pantries, soup kitchens, women’s shelters, Kids Cafes, Community Kitchens. These local organizations provide emergency food assistance to 23 million hungry Americans, including more than nine million children and almost three million seniors each year.  For more information, visit the web site at

charity, october 2003

i’m very tardy due to the travel and moving, but this month’s benificiary is the widows, orphans & disabled firemen's fund of the los angeles firemen's relief association.

charity, september 2003

Amnesty International i don't think that amnesty international needs much explanation. are there people who don’t know who they are and what they do?

they label their news site as “the latest information for journalists,” but it is basically a weblog about human rights issues worldwide. no rss feed, though.

old friends

in a bit of a long-weekend distraction, i tried looking up old friends and classmates on google. it is a good reminder of how generally ineffective that is, and why you shouldn't believe anyone who tries to sell you on the idea that looking up prospective dates or customers or whatever on google is some big fad. someone who has their own website, or participates on publically-archived mailing lists or forums, will likely turn up all over the place (like i do), but for a great many people, you’re lucky if google turns up the results from some charity race that happens to have a participant with the name you're searching for, some entry from a genealogy database, or a number of other similarly-named people.

charity, august 2003

southern poverty law center this month's charity is the first charity someone suggested i donate to after i started this monthly routine: the southern poverty law center.

the center “combats hate, intolerance, and discrimination through education and litigation.” the two programs that i find the most interesting are the intelligence project and

slowly i drift back towards the beginning of the month.

charity, july 2003

apparently cutting back to one charity a month hasn’t made me get around to doing it any earlier in the month.

childrens hospital los angeles this month’s charity is also one of the first charities i gave money to when i started doing this a little over a year ago: childrens hospital los angeles.

i also renewed my membership to the surfrider foundation.

i recently got a receipt for a donation to habitat for humanity that i never made. very odd.

charity, june 2003

NetAid this marks my twelfth month of regular charitable donations. and the last month i’ll be doing three charities—it’s just too much of a headache to do that much research each month. instead, i'll just be doing a triple-sized donation to one charity a month, and i’ll rotate between local, national, and international charities.

charity, may 2003

late in the month again. world wildlife foundation

the event put on in downtown los angeles by the los angeles fire department that i wrote about a couple of years ago is coming up. the annual hope for firefighters takes place on thursday, june 5.

2002 tax refund charity

i finally got around to making charitable donations based on my tax refund (itself caused by charitable donations—a very virtuous circle). harvey mudd college and the electronic frontier foundation were the beneficiaries.

recycling computers and other electronic waste in los angeles

a while back, i wrote that i could not find a charity focused on computer recycling in los angeles. the city does have an e-waste program to handle the stuff. they have collection events every weekend, and a permanent facility in playa del rey.

this still isn't quite what i was trying to find. there are charities in other cities that take used computers, buff them up, and give them out.

charity, april 2003

médecins sans frontières (doctors without borders) i’ll be making some more donations on tax day, in celebration of my refund. i’m still deciding what they’ll be.

charity: march 2003

(good resource for finding local charities: local independent charities of america.)

charity, february 2003

save the rhino very late this month. c'est la vie. once i've hit the one year mark (this is month eight), i'll probably cut it back to one charity a month instead of splitting the donation three ways. finding three worthy charities i want to donate to each month (with the international/national/local distinction) has been tough.

i got the newsletter from the california wildlife center, with it's honor roll of donors. i was in the same category as ed begley, jr. and cathy guisewite, but drew barrymore kicked our asses. and kelsey grammar put us all to shame.

charity, january 2003

no, i did not skip a month. i used to make my donations at the beginning of the month for the preceding month, but i decided that it makes more sense to label things for the month the donation happens.

charity, november 2002

this is another theme month: kids. marine toys for tots foundation

a poster on kuro5hin complains about the unwanted mail solicitations generated by donating to charity. it’s easy enough to see that the charities are not losing money at this by looking at reports from sites like the better business bureau’s, but it can be frustrating to get off the list of some charities, usually the larger ones. the problem could be that it is cheaper, in the short term, to just keep sending you solicitations than deal with pruning the mailing list.

charity, october 2002

with my travelling around the end of october, i slacked off in my monthly charitable giving. because we're coming up on thanksgiving, this will be my first theme month: food. (and my first repeat: the los angeles regional food bank.)

and a bonus (off-theme) contribution, owing to the cashing in on some stock market gains and my speaking fee from phpcon: the electronic frontier foundation (a membership renewal, actually).

charity, september 2002

Amnesty International even though we’re moving to a biweekly pay system at work, i’ll likely stick with doing the charity thing just once a month.

charity, august 2002

world wildlife foundation payday! charitable donations:

finding local charities has been tougher than i would have expected.

electronic frontier foundation a special mid-month charity bonus (thanks to my speaking fee from oscon): electronic frontier foundation

charity, july 2002

médecins sans frontières (doctors without borders) a little late, my july charitable donations:

charity, june 2002

reading is fundamental last friday of the month means payday, which also means bill paying, but best of all means writing checks to charities. this month: