View Full Version : Other ways to give back

Tom Rankin
05-23-2006, 09:51 AM
The TBTS thread got me thinking about this:

There are 2 other ways to give back to others that I have participated in lately:

Relay For Life (http://www.cancer.org/docroot/par/content/PAR_1_Relay_For_Life.asp) - You can walk all night long if you want! There, that sounds hiking related! :D They give an award for the person who walks the furthest! (And my Dad is now recovering from cancer).

Donate Blood. I recently gave my 100th pint of blood. The local paper got wind of it and wrote an article (http://pojonews.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20060521/NEWS01/605210356&SearchID=73245438315968) about me.

As the article states, this is not to brag, but hopefully, to get other people to participate. Hikers are probably more healthy than the average individual, so they are even more likely to be able to donate.

There are other ways to give back as well. Is anyone else active in any other ways?

05-23-2006, 10:07 AM
A hiking buddy of mine is a very active cyclist. He frequently rides in diabetes fund raising marathons.

05-23-2006, 11:01 AM
My wife, her mother, her sister, and her niece participated in the MMRF Race for Research (http://www.mmrfrace.org/race_pages/race_boston_2006.html) a little over a week ago in Boston. They have a couple of events in Connecticut next month.

Pick a cause that's close to your heart and there will be a way to participate. darren has TBTS; what's yours?

05-23-2006, 12:44 PM
Good postive thread Tom...it sounds a bit like bragging, but what the heck...

I support a friend who does the Relay for Life and she supports me doing the The Brain Tumor Society outings...Last week I a bought a gingerbread cake at a Relay for Life bake sale...I told the woman about how my friend and I support each other and she told me she lost her husband (45) to a brain tumor 2 years ago...

I donate to PBS and NPR....Dogs Deserve Better....Big Bothers/Big Sisters...AMC...did the first AIDS ride...many walks for (to end) hunger...Habitat for Humanity.....The Brain Tumor Society...Bunchberry, who's doing a hike to benefit women in transition (Wilderness Heals)...I spend a lot of wonderful time with great kids....and I get back more than I could ever give.......:)


05-23-2006, 12:55 PM
Great thread :)

Participate in or support Wilderness Heals (http://www.elizabethstonehouse.org/hike1.htm) - a three-day women's fundraising hike in the Whites that raises money for a domestic violence shelter and alternative mental health program based in Boston.

05-23-2006, 01:47 PM
There's something to be said about the anonymous gift ... or maybe not said.

05-23-2006, 02:49 PM
Each of us has their own ideas about giving back.

First would be financial. Join and support those trail organizations that you believe in, or whose trails you frequent.

Second, give your time. If you don't live close enough to be an adopter, then maybe join a week long trail crew, or join a group on National Trails Day.

Third, donate your time and energy to a local organization, such as Scouts, that promotes the out of doors.

While hiking and backpacking, we all benefit from the efforts of hundreds and thousands of volunteers. So, find a way to give back that makes the world a little better place for all of us.

05-23-2006, 03:28 PM
Donate Blood. I recently gave my 100th pint of blood.

WOW! Quite a milestone. My hats off to you.


05-23-2006, 03:29 PM
There are other ways to give back as well. Is anyone else active in any other ways?

Lets not forget the 3K jars... most of them that I've seen are really showing their age! On your next 'whack bring along a replacement jar, ziplock, pencil, paper, & string.


05-23-2006, 04:31 PM
Here are two more ways...

The AMC has launched its mountain watch citizen scientist program, which has hikers fill out surveys on air quality and alpine vegitation, hoping to chart changes over time....Incredibly worth-while studies!
Details: http://outdoors.org/conservation/mountainwatch/index.cfm

Also, Seek the Peak, a hike-a-thon to benefit the Mount Washington Observatory is a great day of activities on July 22nd, including tours of the weather station and a fantastic barbacue at Wildcat to conclude the day.
Details: http://www.mountwashington.org/events/stp/

05-23-2006, 04:53 PM
I do not participate in many fund raisers but I do volunteer my time at a free medical clinic. I feel good knowing I am providing care to someone without medical insurance who otherwise would not get treatment.

05-24-2006, 05:54 AM
I pick up trash anywhere I see it in the WMNF, mostly at trailheads and along the trail. I keep a bag with me just for trail trash. Not very glamorous, but the effect is immediate. Each time I hike, I leave the trail a little better by removing branches and litter.

I donate to a couple smaller trail associations that I feel do lots of good work on the trails that I frequently use.

Each year, I donate a framed photograph to Seek The Peak; I hit the observatory website every day, so it's good to give back to them.

I donate blood, although I usually get rejected at the make-shift clinics due to a slow heart rate ( 38ish ). They always take my blood at hospitals.

I'm going to check out the mountain watch program mentioned by w7xman.

Happy Trails!

Jim lombard
05-24-2006, 11:39 AM
I'm looking forward to doing my second hike for a cause on June 17th. We're doing the Presidential traverse, N-S for the American Diabetes Association.

05-24-2006, 12:51 PM
Ok,at this point I will put in a plug for Outdoor Explorations (http://www.outdoorexplorations.org/index.html)
Mrs KD and I have been volunteering for 3 years on snowshoeing,kayaking,and this year sailing trips with OE
Outdoor Explorations is a non profit that provides outdoor "adventures" for persons with various disabilities. Activities include kayaking(Mrs KD and I do kayak training for them),backpacking,sailing,rocks and ropes,and snowshoeing. They are based out of Somerville MA.

Volunteering with OE is a rewarding experience.

05-24-2006, 01:48 PM
It's great to learn about the excellent things people are doing.

My main project right now is organizing the first anual walk for burn survivors and fire safety (October 8th at Artesani Park by Soldiers Field in Boston). Right now we've got a trial web page up and are hoping to have the real thing up soon. I'm hoping to get a mountain hike, or peak bagging, component going (probably for 2007) and would love to get people's ideas and input.

Trial page: http://www.lastgasppctest1.us/

Tom's consistency in blood donations is remarkable and sets a great example. I just hit five years cancer free and am eligible to give blood again (although I need to have some tests redone in July and will probably wait until then before I declare my blood is really clean). As I needed a good deal of donated blood a few years back, I am looking forward to the chance to, literally, give back.

05-24-2006, 04:18 PM
WOW! Quite a milestone. My hats off to you.


I made donation #158 today.

Tom Rankin
05-25-2006, 09:29 AM
I made donation #158 today.

Wow! I hope I live long enough to get to that level! :eek: :D

05-25-2006, 10:23 AM
There are people where I work who are involved in charities, some already mentioned here. We help each other. For my efforts; I participate in a few environmental groups with financial donations and lobbying efforts, I volunteer my time and effort for bird census and bird banding. This brings real data to the CT DEP. I also do a couple Audubon CBCs which helps create a data base of bird population trends. No bragging here...Im just having fun.

My big effort at the moment is a state level health freedom movement, hoping to keep consumers choices in alternative health modalities open.

05-25-2006, 11:00 AM
my days of giving to big charities have been over since my wife (who used to work at a bar in boston) used to say how some folks who were very high in a certain charity organization used to basically come in (and brag!) blow hundreds on food and even more on booze on "organization time and money".

whenever I get a call to donate over the phone, I ask if they can send me something in the mail or direct me to a website - not once has something came.

I now tend to donate actual "things" (clothes, toys, etc..) rather than money - so it doesn't end up lining some directors' pocket or getting them boozed up smoozing.

05-25-2006, 12:13 PM
I now tend to donate actual "things" (clothes, toys, etc..) rather than money - so it doesn't end up lining some directors' pocket or getting them boozed up smoozing.
I'm with Captain Cynical here...as his second in command. I want to know where my $$$ are going.

IMHO, time is most valuable thing you can donate.

05-25-2006, 04:40 PM
whenever I get a call to donate over the phone, I ask if they can send me something in the mail or direct me to a website - not once has something came.

I now tend to donate actual "things" (clothes, toys, etc..) rather than money - so it doesn't end up lining some directors' pocket or getting them boozed up smoozing.

First of all, it's your money, and you can do whatever you want with it. Or not. So if you don't want to donate, that is absolutely your business.

But please keep in mind that not all charities are run by moochers and scam artists. Most of the people I know who work in the non-profit world - including directors - work their asses off, and do so for a heck of a lot less than their corporate counterparts. The fact that some abuse expense accounts doesn't make them all crooks, anymore than the fact that some people leave trash on the trail makes all hikers serial polluters.

The problem with asking a telemarketer to send you info about an organization is that most of them work for a telemarketing agency and not directly for the charity. That means they have very little incentive to send you something in the mail even if they have the ability.

Donating "stuff" can help (although it can hurt, too - some organizations wind up spending a ridiculous amount of money fixing or disposing of things that get dumped on them), as does volunteering, but most charities really need money, as well.

If you are at all inclined to give it, of course you want to know it's being put to good use. But it's usually not that hard to find a website and/or ask them for an annual report. Or look up their 990's on Guidestar.org (you can find out what their top executives get paid, and often how much of their expenses got to programs/services).


(sorry, occupational hazard ;) )

05-25-2006, 10:50 PM
I like to think that I donate as I can both in time and dollars, and, as was previously mentioned, you do what is right for you. I can tell you that payback from giving in a positive way is very rewarding and often very humbling.

Last year I found myself President of three not-for-profit organizations!! My longest current term is for a $12M organization that runs clinics for persons with mental illness and/or alcohol/chemical dependency. In another organization I chair an annual golf outing to support the county SPCA and yet another Center for the Arts. Finally, every late summer (as we are packing for the winter) I organize a "boat drive" around our lake that serves to fill the shelves of the local food pantry in an economically challenged county in the southern tier of NY. (We are the largest annual donation for this pantry!) Last month I did a work day on the Finger Lakes Trail rehabbing a new cabin... there is so much to do in so many ways!!

Hats off to all who get involved. What I'm really proud of is that my 17-year old daughter succeeded in finishing up her 50+ hour community project, and last month received her Girl Scout Gold Award, the organization's top achievement. :D

05-29-2006, 06:42 AM

These good people save orphaned and injured animals and give them a second chance at life. At the present, they need donations to buy goat's milk to feed to a few baby moose and deer.