Hello women of Cincinnati! Often times, after women have found out that I started a charity, Amy’s Hope International, I am approached with questions as to how they can help. I am often surprised at how little the general public is aware of small to mid-size non-profits in our very own city. The sheer number of women that are looking to volunteer also surprises me! It is now my personal goal to educate you on the various charities in the area, as well as their volunteer opportunities.
Over the next six months, Cincy Chic will be focusing on five different local charities as well as providing advice and ideas to help ease you into the donating and volunteering world. You will hear from board members, employees, volunteers and beneficiaries of the organizations, which will give you an opportunity to experience the personality of the non-profit prior to volunteering.
These charities are based and operated in the Cincinnati area. The benefactors are reached locally as well as globally. Cincy Chic is excited to share what is being done to make a difference as well as the interesting, fun people that are involved in making their organization a great success.
In addition to the overview of the various non-profits, we will also supply you with helpful knowledge to become a better volunteer and donor to any given non-profit. If you have a local non-profit we should feature in the future, If you are interested in volunteering for or need more information about any of the below-mentioned groups, post a comment on the new Local Non-Profits’ forum in the forum section of Cincy Chic, or send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org.
“h2o nigeria is operated by Self Sustaining Enterprises (SSE), a not-for-profit, faith-based, charitable organization in Mason, Ohio,” according to the organization’s Web site. h2o nigeria works to provide clean water to the rural communities of Plateau State, Nigeria. The program also teaches the communities about sanitation and hygiene.
“[h20 nigeria] captures the passion of caring people to bring the love of Christ to people in dire need in tangible and sustainable ways,” according to the organization’s Web site. The goal is for everyone in rural Nigeria to not only have access to clean water but to understand and use sanitation measures.
Kenzie’s Closet collects gently worn formal dresses and accessories and provides them free of charge to “economically disadvantaged” Cincinnati area high school students. High school guidance counselors, principals and social workers refer the girls to Kenzie’s Closet.
“We want to make sure that no young woman in Cincinnati has to miss her prom this season because of family financial limitations,” says Brynne Coletti, founder and executive director of Kenzie’s Closet. “A prom is a special rite of passage for a young lady, a night she dreams about.”
Both dress and cash donations are appreciated. The cash donations allow Kenzie’s Closet volunteers to buy dresses in sizes they do not have, Coletti says.
Volunteers also are needed to work in the Kenzie’s Closet boutique (located in O’Bryonville). Volunteers help with dress alternations and serve as personal shopping guides for each of the young ladies. Please visit www.kenziescloset.org or call 513-533-PROM for more information on how to donate or volunteer. All donations are tax-deductible.
Kenzie’s Closet was named after Makena “Kenzie” Comisar, who was killed tragically in a single-car accident in 2002 before she ever got to attend her own senior prom. Kenzie was a student at St. Ursula Academy and was known for her big heart and generosity.
Literacy Center West
Literacy Center West (LCW) works to eliminate illiteracy. “The mission of [LCW] is to provide literacy instruction and GED preparation at no cost to those who desire our services,” according to the LCW Web site. Besides literacy, however, LCW wants to instill “excellent character and civic responsibility” in their clients.
Because LCW operates on less than $500,000 per year, every dollar makes a difference. And every dollar is tax-deductible. To donate, visit the LCW Web site.
“Back2Back Ministries communicates a lifestyle of service by sharing the love of Christ and serving God through our service to others,” according to the organization’s Web site. Functioning on both a local and international level, the organization works with local students as well as orphan children and needy people in Monterrey, Mexico, and Jos, Nigeria. Locally, the group works with area churches to encourage and develop leadership skills in students.
For more information, visit Back2Back Ministries at their Web site or contact them at 513-754-0300.
Amy’s Hope International
Amy’s Hope International (AHI) strives to help Eastern European orphanages receive grants to help relieve their financial burdens while they are providing a healthy environment for children.
”Private orphanages offer a solid upbringing with a focus on education, self-sufficiency and Christian faith. This environment provides an avenue for orphans to become contributing members of society,” according to AHI’s Web site. With this solid upbringing, these children are more likely to grow into adults who are not homeless, prostitutes, alcoholics or drug abusers, according to the AHI’s Web site.
“How To Donate Properly During the Holiday Season”
Make the most of your tax deductible dollars by becoming an intelligent donor. It is not only important to invest your money wisely but give it wisely as well. We are going to provide insight into just how you can do this.
Photo: Neysa Ruhl Photography
Location: The McAlpin
Model: Christine Brunner
Makeup Artistry: Cecily Claytor, Zoë Custom Cosmetics