The best part about the holiday season is the spirit of giving that it ignites in each of us. During this time of reflection as we consider what we’re grateful for, we’re excited to share this annual roundup of ways you’ve been a part of giving all year long.
With your support, we’ve been able to pay it forward in beautiful ways. In 2021, together, we helped empower women and advance the practice of pelvic care across the globe. Through financial contributions and dilator donations, we were honored to support life-changing surgeries, medical training and care, to help improve access to vital treatment and support programs, and to give a voice to and provide critical resources for those in need.
This roundup highlights the causes you made possible. Follow the links to learn more, and donate if you’re in the Year-End Giving mood!
Women’s Health & Opportunity
Obstetric fistula is a childbirth injury that occurs when a mother has a prolonged, obstructed labor, and doesn’t have access to emergency medical care, such as a C-section. More prevalent in third-world countries, the resulting fistula leaves the woman incontinent, humiliated and too often shunned by her community. Providing fistula repair surgeries worldwide to more women than any other organization, the Fistula Foundation works to combat the devastation and isolation of living with fistula. The Foundation is heralded as a top charity performing the greatest good for funds spent. Each surgery not only changes one woman’s world forever, but her restored health has a profound ripple effect on her family and community.
Mama’s Smile Health Foundation (MaSHeF)
In Kenya, most girls are socially and economically left behind due to limited access to education, menstrual hygiene, early pregnancy, child marriages, harmful practices like FGM, and lack of effective mentorship. Mama’s Smile Health Foundation (MaSHeF) advocates for universal health care and education, prioritizing children from impoverished families and girls. The Kenya-based NGO supports comprehensive sexual and reproductive health education and offers training and a safe space for conversations about self-care. Their communal health insurance fund helps the most vulnerable gain access to needed care. MaSHeF also facilitates the establishment of local educational centers, and provides mentorship programs, computer skills classes for girls, and adult classes for women.
Clitoraid helps victims of female genital mutilation (FGM) get their lives back. FGM is often performed on young girls in primitive conditions without anesthetic. Its short-term risk of death is coupled with lifelong risk of psychological and sexual problems, chronic pelvic infections, urinary tract infections, and life-threatening birth complications for mother and child. Clitoraid helps train doctors and provide free clitoral repair surgery to women worldwide to alleviate these pelvic health challenges and restore pleasure and dignity to FGM victims. Clitoraid often helps women in nations that will not allow its services. Soul Source was honored to help a Clitoraid patient with her immigration and legal bills. The U.S.-based NGO also vigorously campaigns to end the practice female excision once and for all.
Women for Women International
Women for Women International works to improve the lives of women in war-torn countries. The organization supports the most marginalized women, in the most difficult places, and they stay for the long term, helping to create access and opportunity that positively impacts women, families and communities. Donors sponsor a woman’s participation in an intensive program, helping her to move from crisis and isolation to self-sufficiency and empowerment. Women survivors meet in supportive groups. Together, they learn to save, build businesses, and improve their health. They receive job training that multiplies their earnings, and learn to understand their rights and change societal rules, creating a more just world where every woman is seen, heard and valued.
BOTSwana Oncology Global Outreach (BOTSOGO)
Each year, we’re honored to donate dilators to Mass General/Harvard Medical School Center in Botswana, Africa to support their efforts to help women rehabilitate from cancer treatment. The majority of cancer cases occur in low and middle-income countries. The BOTSwana Oncology Global Outreach program (BOTSOGO) works to improve access to quality cancer care in Botswana through a collaboration between Boston and Botswana physicians and healthcare professionals. BOTSOGO connects Mass General Cancer Center, the Botswana Harvard AIDS Institute Partnership, and medical and government institutions in Botswana to help educate the Botswana population, train future cancer caregivers, and catalyze clinical research to improve cancer care.
The Endometriosis Foundation of America (EndoFound)
This past Giving Tuesday, it was our pleasure here at Soul Source to donate 25% of our online sales to The Endometriosis Foundation of America (EndoFound). Endometriosis is often painful and can impact all aspects of life. Worldwide, it affects 10 percent of women age 12-52, and many often experience a decade-long delay in diagnosis. Donations to EndoFound support their mission of increasing disease recognition, providing advocacy, facilitating expert surgical training, and funding landmark endometriosis research.
Equal Rights & Access
The Transgender Law Center
Transgender Law Center (TLC) is the largest national trans-led organization advocating for changes in law, policy, and attitudes so that all people can live safely, authentically, and free from discrimination regardless of their gender identity or expression. Their litigation has furthered equal access to and improvements in areas including employment, living conditions, education, immigration, and healthcare. They also employ community-driven strategies to keep transgender and gender nonconforming people alive, thriving, and fighting for liberation.
The Trevor Project
Committed to building a safer, more inclusive world, The Trevor Project strives to end suicide among LGBTQ+ youth. LGBTQ youth are four times more likely to attempt suicide, and suicide remains the second leading cause of death among all young people in the U.S. The Trevor Project provides crisis services, peer support, public education and advocacy. Among their crisis prevention and intervention services include hosting the world’s largest safe-space social networking community and offering 24/7 support, counseling, and information for LGBTQ+ youth as well as family, friends and professionals who wish to help an LGBTQ youth.
The Out Foundation
Our health and fitness are central to our ability to thrive. The OUT Foundation works to remove the barriers that block LGBTQ+ individuals' access and participation in fitness, health and wellness. They work to make fitness inclusive and create healthy spaces where athletes can feel supported through local chapters, inclusive gym finders, hosted workouts, online social communities and app-driven challenges and inspiring news and guest blogs.
Kiva expands financial access to help underserved communities thrive. More than 1.7 billion people around the world are unbanked and can’t access financial services they need. Kiva helps connect international donors to many great causes around the world that may otherwise not be possible. Kiva’s crowdfunding loans unlock capital, improving the quality and reducing the cost of financial services for underserved communities around the world.
Through Kiva's work, donors help improve lives and make dreams possible: Students can pay for tuition, women can start businesses, farmers are able to invest in equipment, and families can afford needed emergency care.
Millions of Americans are just one job loss, missed paycheck, or medical emergency away from hunger. More than 38 million people, including 12 million children, in the United States are food insecure. Many households that experience food insecurity do not qualify for federal nutrition programs, and rely on local food banks and programs for critical support.
As the nation’s largest domestic hunger-relief organization, Feeding America hosts 200 food banks and 60,000 food pantries and meal programs in communities across America. Amidst the pandemic, unemployment and food insecurity nearly doubled. Soul Source is honored to support its local food pantry and Feeding America’s mission to fight hunger, which is often the gateway to helping individuals sustain housing, employment, healthcare, education and personal and family well-being.
Thank you for your part in helping to make all of this giving possible. For more detailed accounts about Soul Source’s humanitarian efforts, visit our blog >>