Charity Pick: April Showers Bring ‘A New Leaf’

A-New-Leaf, Give BigEvery month, Brown Paper Tickets donates at least 5% of our profits to a charity from a pool of online charity submissions that come through our charity page. We are pleased to announce that we have selected A New Leaf as our April 2017 charity.

With so many great charities, choosing just one a month is a difficult task. There are submissions from many wonderful organizations that positively impact communities.

A New Leaf is a 46-year-old community nonprofit organization that provides a broad spectrum of support services to help individuals and families in crisis.

Many times, folks are stuck in situations out of their control and need a little help to get their lives set in the right direction. With dignity and compassion, A New Leaf improves the lives of families and individuals.

Impact of A New Leaf

  • 200,000 meals annually
  • 150,000 nights of shelter a year
  • Host 12,000 counseling sessions annually
  • Aided 21,140 individuals and families with critical resources

Last year alone, A New Leaf provided 22,047 individuals with a wide spectrum of services, including homeless and domestic violence shelters with services, affordable housing solutions, behavioral health, foster care, counseling, financial literacy coaching, and basic needs.

A New Leaf is a critical asset to their community and it is crucial that organizations continue do this work.

How to Give Big to A New Leaf

Giving volunteer time feels amazing. If you live in the Valley area of Arizona, please consider helping out. A New Leaf has both group and individual volunteer opportunities available. Learn more and sign up or have a blast at one of their special events.

Get your workplace, local school or community involved. Hold a donation drive for essential items.

Finally, you can donate direct and make an impact for A New Leaf and the people they serve. Donations are tax deductible and if you live in the state of Arizona, your donation may be eligible for a dollar-for-dollar tax credit from the state.

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Giving Refugees a Helping Handshake

Photo-IRC-RefugeesLanguage barriers. Financial worries. Finding a job. Refugees face enormous hardships, especially during the first few months in the U.S. On Giving Tuesday, a group from Brown Paper Tickets visited the International Rescue Committee (IRC) in Seattle to facilitate mock job interviews with a refugee group who just arrived to the U.S. a few weeks ago.

Brown Paper Tickets allows every employee to use an extra 40 paid hours per year to give back to the community via nonprofit volunteering. Through this benefit, we’ve collaborated with some amazing organizations and met some inspiring people.

Founded in 1933 at Albert Einstein’s request, the IRC offers emergency aid and assistance to refugees and those displaced by war. The IRC works in over 40 countries and 22 U.S. cities, restoring safety and hope.

We joined the IRC for a day of job readiness training unsure what to expect. We left with a deep admiration for the participants and the realization that despite different backgrounds, we face similar challenges at new jobs.

To break the ice, we went around the room and dished about our first jobs. A volunteer from our group told us about biking through a treacherous blizzard to deliver newspapers. One of the refugees shared a story about fighting off feral dogs while carrying large bags of food. The anecdotes varied wildly from sad to funny, but the takeaways were similar. Everyone made mistakes and felt unprepared at their first jobs.

Volunteering with refugeesAfter the round of introductions and stories, we began mock interviewing. We practiced standard questions, such as “what are your strengths?” and exchanged ideas on what U.S. employers look for in candidates. Eye contact and strong handshakes are not a custom practice everywhere and relaying skills, even to a prospective employer can feel very uncomfortable to those from other countries.

The room filled with nervous laughter as we went through the questions and shared interview tips. As we started to pack up our stuff, one man said, “The IRC are our first American friends. You are the second. Are we going to be friends for life?”

Whoa, that made it hard to leave. But they’re in good hands with the IRC. And we had such a positive, rewarding experience, we know we’ll return one day.

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Non-profit of the Month: One Tail at a Time

After spending some time with different animal shelters, foster programs and animal help clinics, I ran across this organization in Chicago: One Tail at a Time. They are a non-profit foster program that is a no-kill, all-breed dog rescue program.  This is their mission statement:

One Tail at a Time…serves to lower euthanasia rates in the greater Chicagoland area and provide education on the humane treatment of companion animals. The rescue concentrates its efforts on dogs that are in danger of being euthanized, or those that are physically and/or mentally deteriorating in a shelter environment, works to rehabilitate them, and then matches each dog with a permanent home. Focused on keeping pets as a part of our family, One Tail at a Time offers fosters and adopters continued support and education on how best to keep dogs happy, healthy and part of the family.

What is very unique about this dog foster program is they pay for everything a person needs (food, medical, dog walkers, daycare, etc.) to ensure that all the dogs in their program are well taken care of. They don’t just go out and pick the best of the best animals from the shelters for quick adoption turn-around, they find the best in all dogs and try to give as many of them as possible a chance at a better life. If, for some reason, the adoption isn’t a good fit, they will take the dog back into their program. In fact they prefer it! This allows them to ensure that the dog finds the best family possible. Even if a family can no longer keep the dog years after the adoption, One Tail at a Time will take the dog back into their program and find it a new, happy home.

A current foster for One Tail at a Time, Juli Zagrans, stated: “I’ve been volunteering and fostering for OTAT for about 2 years. I’ve had 17 of their dogs in my home and consistently work with this organization because they make doing the right thing easy. It was started by a group of friends with a vision that they could offer something to the Chicago rescue community, and they have. They choose quality over quantity, and once an OTAT dog, always an OTAT dog.”

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