Monday, April 26, 2010

Adopt an Elephant!



My daughter, who has been in Thailand for the last month, will wrap up her visit with an overnight visit, and hands-on opportunity to care for elephants, at the Elephant Nature Park in Chaing Mai. After visiting their website, I am very excited to hear her stories and find an elephant to adopt. I'm sure she will have a favorite. They are a wonderful species of animal that are endangered on so many levels.

Here is little Faa Mai, who loves to eat. The caption read that her "carer" always makes sure she has plenty of fruit and sweet grass to eat. She certainly seems to enjoy her food:




One thing my husband and I have learned over the past two years is that the money best spent is that which is given away. So in the spirit of living our best lives possible, we hope to find other worthy causes that touch our hearts. I have a long list: elephants, Haiti, gorillas, the oceans, the list goes on and on. What is your favorite place to want to give?

38 comments:

Friko said...

I learned today that if you are given some money to spend any way you like, giving it away to a good cause makes you happiest. NO, these findings are scientific, NOT put out by fundraisers for good causes.

My favourite good causes are those nearest to my own life, charities that help the aged, cancer charities and
wildlife organisations.

Nancy said...

Friko - I absolutely believe that! I love all of your causes.

Meeko Fabulous said...

I contribute to autism and world wildlife fund. :)

lakeviewer said...

Amen!

Nancy said...

Meeko - Great causes!

Brian Miller said...

how very cool...i imagine it would be fascinating and terrifying being so close to such large beasts...

maggie's garden said...

I don't have much to give monetarily right now so I have taken on given more of myself. It's funny that those in need...find me. One at a time they come into my life...and strangely when the one moves on...another seems to come to me. The universe seems to know what I'm capable of because I have never felt too drained by what I was in need to give to each person/animal.
I bet you'll be glad when your daughter gets home safe and sound. What a wonderful trip.

DJan said...

I give to NPR, Doctors Without Borders, and stuff like that. I would LOVE to have elephants to support!

Trish and Rob MacGregor said...

Animal causes and doctors without borders. Sounds like her trip has been just grand. Good for her!

JC said...

Loved that baby elephant. So cute.

I give to local animal rescue groups. I give to a local group that rescued chimps from a terrible place. I give to the local food banks. I used to give to big groups but now I stay local.

I also donate all my paper products to the food bank bin. Donate clothes to the local boys and girls club bin. Donate old books to that bin.

I at least try ...

ellen abbott said...

Elephants are so intelligent and social, wonderful beings.

We have recently given money to Kiva for micro-loans, money we will continue to loan out over and over. We also support the ACLU.

Nancy said...

Brian - I can't wait to hear her stories.

maggie - Isn't that the ultimate gift? Yourself? You're right about the universe knowing just exactly what we need at any given moment. Learning to trust that is another matter sometimes.

Trish - I really like Doctor's Without Borders, too. Yes, I think she's had a grand time but she is really ready to be home. She's my Taurus. She told me about a week into it that she realized she was "homebody."

JC - You do more than try! Bravo.

ellen - Elephants are gentle giants. I just heard about KIVA while we were on vacation from our friends who support it. This organization is definitely one I want to look into.

Nancy said...

DJan - NPR is a great one to support! Go check out the elephant herd at the website from my post. You can adopt an elephant for a year for $75!

Marlene said...

Oh I love elephants! such gentle and intelligent beings..My heart always breaks when I think of them in a circus or a small zoo...My husband and I usually support local shelters..
we have donated to wolf and Wild Mustangs,organizations.
and I volunteer also with my time to some that are near here..

Nancy said...

Marlene - Love your causes - wild mustangs are a part of the Nevada landscape - a worthy cause, indeed. Wolves are so misunderstood.

CrazyCris said...

I'm afraid I have yet to have found myself in the financial situation of being able to "give away" money to support a cause... but my favourite giving so far has been gifts to friends from my trips! I can't resist little trinkets and bobbles that I know such and such would adore, and I love their surprised looks when I give them something!

If I did have the money available for donations, it would definitely be something nature related.

Miss Footloose said...

Lots of good causes! Just a couple of favorites here: Habitat for Humanity, Nothingbutnets (anti-malaria nets) and one we have personal contact with is a small home for handicapped kids in Armenia, where we lived for six years.

One more, very interesting, is Seeds of Peace, an organization that brings kids from "conflicting" sides together in a "summer" camp, such as Israeli and Palestinian kids, and gets them to see each other's sides and promote understanding and (let's hope) peace.

The Good Cook said...

Nancy - If your daughter is a homebody, she is a true Taurus, just like me. My "homebodiness" didn't kick in until my late 40's.. so in true Taurus fashion the charities I support are usually close to home, or at least close to my heart. Cancer, foodbanks, women's shelters, children (especially St. Jude). I have said it before and I will say it again, after reading all of your reader's comments, "Americans are among the most generous people on the planet".

God Bless the givers in the world.

California Girl said...

Appropriate quote today. hahahaha!

What a great opp for your daughter. I would love to do that. I love elephants. They are so smart and loyal and their memories are so great.

"I meant what I said and
I said what I meant.
An elephant's faithful
One hundred per cent."

quoting from my memory which is probably less reliable than an elephant's!

GYPSYWOMAN said...

well, like others, the past few years i've not had the financial assets i had previously enjoyed - but in terms of those things, i always gave to local charities such as homeless shelters and shelters for abused women and children and i give now in other ways, with contributions of clothing and food items - and i volunteer my time and energy to the state office of child advocacy which represents the interests of neglected and abused children - i also believe that charity begins at home and that "helping" takes many many forms - and would that i could contribute to organizations that protect wildlife of all kinds! great post, as usual, nancy - and great news of your upcoming relocation - going home!! again!

A Year on the Grill said...

OXFAM is a British charity where you can literally BUY A GOAT for a third world family. A goat can provide fertilizer, milk and if need be, meat.

These gifts can change the world for a village. They offer an opportunity to buy a breading pair for $50, my wife and I have done this during the last two holiday seasons. A small thing to us and a life changer for the recipients

Lily Robinson said...

How cute is that little dude?

I've always had a special place in my heart for the homeless and domestic violence victims.

You're right... giving it away is the best!

Hilary said...

Oh he's just adorable. I love elephants. Don't you wish he could just pack up his trunk and come live with you? ;)

I like SCAW.. which stands for Sleeping Children Around the World. They're run completely on donations of cash, services and time, and create and deliver bed kits to children in need. http://www.scaw.org/

California Girl said...

This post is generating some very good charity suggestions I'm not familiar with. I love the lesser known ones (as long as they are legit).

scarlethue said...

Our local humane society. They're building a new facility and really need it! Right now they're housed in trailers and old shacks. I got both my pets from them and life wouldn't be the same without them. My husband and I donated enough to "sponsor" a small dog kennel, which I put in my Bub's name. Dogs and cats in general hold a special place in my heart, but I'll donate to any nearly animal causes.

Cloudia said...

Friko is right!

Cloudia said...

Aloha from Waikiki


Comfort Spiral

Butternut Squash said...

“One person can make a difference, and everyone should try” – John F Kennedy

I've been thinking about this quote for the past several days. Children and education is where my money is going. Peace.

Jo said...

That is one cute elephant. My father always wanted a baby elephant for a pet, but my mother reminded him baby elephants always grew up. :-)

Having been a single mother, a cause close to my heart is anything involving children of single parent families. Sometimes something a small as a new pair of skates, or a new bike, can make a difference to a child's optimism about life.

Jayne Martin said...

I'm always a softy for animal causes. What a wonderful experience for your daughter. I'm jealous.

Nancy said...

Chris - Your time will come. Students rarely have extra funds, but your heart is one that gives when it can.

Miss - Love all of your ideas. Especially the nets. Easy to give, inexpensive, with a big outcome.

Good Cook - Both my husband and daughter are Taurus. They like their homes, for sure. Love all of your ideas - I especially give to food banks. I never pass up the container to FEED FAMILIES when I buy groceries. These tough times need all of us to remember those who do not have enough food.

California - Click on "meet the herd." These sweet animals have had such tough lives, and you can adopt one for $75 per year!

Gypsy - Is there a more important charity than abused children? Seriously?

Year - Wonderful charity! The gift that keeps on giving.

Lily - Domestic violence is on the rise - this is a very important charity.

Hilary - This is the first time I've heard of this organization. Thank you for the link.

California - I agree. I'm going to visit all of them. Our friends were just talking about KIVA on vacation. That one is really a good one, I've heard.

scarlethue - I donate there as well. It was so devastating to see all of the abandoned animals in Maui. They really have a problem there. It's heartbreaking.

Cloudia - I totally agree.

Butternut - You have been personally responsible for some big outcomes. Bless you!

Jo - I couldn't agree more. We always try to be involved in the Adopt A Family during the holidays. The children often ask for things such as underwear, but we always give that and something a bit more fun. :-)

Jayne - I'm a bit jealous, too. But with the problems in Bangkok, I will be happy to have her home. She has said the Thai people are wonderful. She has not felt afraid during her entire time there. But I do wish I could have visited the elephant park with her!

Deborah said...

I want one of those! Such wonderful animals.
(Your daughter sounds like she's having a great time, Nancy. :))

I was thinking recently that I would put some money into Kiva.org, which I'm sure you've heard about. I'm a supporter of human rights organizations like Amnesty International, and women's groups in Afghanistan plus whatever pulls at my heart strings.

Reya Mellicker said...

Fantastic.

I've learned so much about elephants from Tam, Miranda, Val and Janelle, more than I ever could have expected. They are magnificent animals.

Well done, you!!

Sniffles and Smiles said...

Oh, there are too many to list!! But it looks like you have one of those kinds of lists yourself! Wonderful! Your kind of spending is the very best kind!! Love, Janine XO

Nancy said...

Deborah - I'm checking out Kiva, too. I really like your Afghanistan women's charity. Good one.

Reya - I love elephants! I have a little wooden one on my shelf next to my bed. I can't wait to pick the one out that I want to adopt.

Sniffles - Why am I not surprised you have many that you support? You definitely have a kind heart, Janine.

Phoebe Miriah Kirby said...

I love elephants!!! They are so precious. Recently I have been wanting to sponsor a cow, pig, rabbit, or chicken. At farm animal sanctuaries they have all kinds of little critters to sponsor. It also makes a great gift to a friend. Sponsor an animal in their name. :)

Linda Pendleton said...

My favorite is Heifer Organization and I like buying chicks, goats, for third world villagers.

Also like Feeding America which used to be called America's Second Harvest;
and Elton John's AIDS Foundation.

Miss Footloose said...

Heifer International, of course! A great way to help feeding people, based on the idea of "If you give a man a fish you feed him for a day. If you teach him how to fish you give him a living," or something like that.

What is great about Heifer is that it is wonderful place to start teaching your children about giving to others and really helping because it is so simple to understand.

And even with very little money they can buy a few chicks or a rabbit to be given to children in poor countries. Heifer has great teaching materials too.

Actually I have a funny story about reading a Heifer story (Beatrice's Goat) to a 5-year-old boy. It's here on my blog if you want to read it:

http://tinyurl.com/28jz2gv

Title: Expat Story: Little Kids, Big World