Blog Archive

Blog Archive

Challenging What’s Possible in Pro Bono Service

Across the country and the world, companies are putting their unique business muscle to work for the greater good. These pro bono volunteers – top-notch professionals in technology, public health, systems engineering, logistics, manufacturing and more – are using their industry-leading skills and relevant issue expertise to help nonprofits change lives.

White House Gathering Explores Ways Pro Bono Volunteers Strengthen Nonprofits

Engineers, marketers, software developers and other highly skilled professionals are lending their know-how as pro bono volunteers to help nonprofits achieve their missions – with the blessing of the companies that employ them. At the White House today, Points of Light’s Billion + Change, the White House and the U.S. Department of Commerce led a dialogue on boosting the capacity of nonprofits and the emerging role companies are playing.

Shaped by the Holocaust, She’s Spending Her Life Making Things Right

Born in Budapest, Eva Haller left Europe after the Holocaust and arrived in the United States – by way of a three-year detour in Ecuador – in 1952. Now 85, she says she's "never looked back." Except, in a way, she has – constantly.

When Managing Day-to-Day Life Becomes Too Much for Cancer Patients, These Volunteers Step In

When serious illness strikes, taking medicine, meeting with doctors and scheduling tests consumes time and money. Little of both is left for the mundane business of day-to-day living – paying the rent, buying groceries, playing with pets. Blue Star, an Orlando, Florida-based choreographer and theater owner witnessed this firsthand in 2010 when she “embarked on quite the cancer journey” with her ailing friend, John Barber.

After the Baltimore Riots, Volunteers Have a Long-Term Role to Play

The recent riots in Baltimore – sparked by unrest over the death of Freddie Gray, a 25-year-old black man in police custody – brought out the worst and the best in the city’s people. The day after rioters smashed windows, set fire to police vehicles and tore through businesses in the West Baltimore neighborhood, neighbors volunteered to help. That immediate outpouring from volunteers was heartwarming to see, says Kelly Hodge-Williams, executive director of Business Volunteers Maryland, but there’s more volunteers can do in the long term.

Turning Sadness Into `Good Grief' for Kids of Fallen Heroes

For many kids, Memorial Day is just a day off from school, a taste of summer break. But for some children, it can be a reminder of a loved one lost in the line of duty. That’s where Judy Mathewson comes in.

The `Naive, Genuinely Honest, Simple Approach’ of Kids Leads to a Gift for Young Cancer Patients

One of the many wonderful qualities of a child is his ability to see the world's problems as easily fixable. Cancer, to them, could be eradicated if "a really smart scientist makes a medicine to cure it." This naive, genuinely honest, simple approach is what led to a fundraising effort to help children in a local hospital.

Celebrating the Strength That Comes From Diversity

When Hurricane Katrina devastated New Orleans in 2005, thousands of evacuees streamed into nearby Houston. Their arrival added to the city’s influx of refugees who had arrived from troubled nations in Asia and Africa and immigrants from Mexico and Central America. A Texas couple saw that through the tension, there was an opportunity to learn about each other.

Service as a Family Tradition – Four Generations Strong

Service starts with family. Family in my culture is basically everyone. I remember growing up and having lots of “aunts and cousins.” It wasn’t until I got older that I realized that we weren’t necessarily related! Both my mom, Joylyn, and my grandmother, Alice, were very involved in the community. I work to pass on these same community values to my own children.

Where Some See Hopelessness, These Volunteers See Promise

Central America is one of the toughest regions in the world to be a child. Poverty, violence and lack of opportunity are prevalent. Access to quality health and education services is limited. Migration from the region separates family members, and child migrants face life-threatening journeys.

A Love of Biking Leads to Cycling for Cancer

Participating in their first bike-a-thon eight years ago was a demanding effort that required Jacob Brier and his wife, Dani, to raise $4,000 each and complete a punishing two-day, 200-mile ride in and around Boston. It wasn't particularly fun, but the cause – cancer research and treatment – was important to them because both had close relatives who had battled the disease. So they created a similar event closer to home.

Here's How We Prepared Communities for Disaster and How You Can Get Prepared, Too

America’s PrepareAthon! – a grassroots campaign to get more people prepared for disaster – urges all of us to take action to keep ourselves, our neighbors and our families safe. To support the campaign, throughout April Points of Light informed and equipped local communities to be able to more quickly respond to and recover from disaster.

See How These Volunteers Won $10,000 Grants Making a Difference and How You Can, Too

Get inspired by the 14 Make A Difference Day honorees being celebrated on Wednesday and see how you can get involved for a chance to win a $10,000 grant.

What’s Your Path for Change? Here’s One to Try

Mahatma Gandhi’s teachings tell us: “Be the change you want see.” OK, but that’s not always easy to do. Where do we start? Where is the path? Those are questions many of us ask ourselves – and struggle with. Including me. I have found some answers in "A Path Appears," a book about evidence-based ways to create opportunity among our world’s most vulnerable, those in poverty.

A Volunteer Firefighter in a Town Without Many Fires Serves His Community However He Can

Located not far from the gateway to Death Valley, the small town of Beatty, Nevada, doesn't have a pharmacy, a hospital, a dentist – or even a big box store. What it does have, though, just might make up for it all: Mike Harmon. Officially the chief of the town’s all-volunteer fire department, Harmon has spent a lot of time putting out fires of a different sort.