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What Do Giving to Charity and Having Sex Have in Common?

posted by Nathalie Martin

Both light up the same pleasure responders in the brain. In other words, it feels good to give! Plus, it is not too late to get a 2010 tax break for a good cause. With over 1.4 billion people currently living below the international poverty line of $1.15 a day, there is also plenty of need.   I was moved to blog about this topic after reading about Betty Londergan, who responded to her job loss by giving $100 a day for 365 days, and then blogging about it. There are more extreme stories too, like the one about the Salwen couple in Atlanta who sold their big house, gave away half the proceeds, and moved into a smaller one. And then there are the rest of us … who just might just be willing to give up a new toothbrush holder or shoe caddy so someone with nothing can have something. 

Warm fuzzies and tax breaks aside, no one wants to give to a charity that won’t use the money well of course, so where should you give, if you don’t already know?   Check out one of these sites for ideas: GiveWell, in which former hedge fund managers use a holistic approach to assessing charities and their ability to meet their goals, or Charity Navigator , which analyses administrative costs and gives other tips on choosing charities. In the end though, it may be best to simply think about what you value most and how you can create more of that in the world. This may just lead you to the perfect charity for you. But don't wait too long. Only five more days until the end of 2010.


I imagine these people may also give secretly to in other ways as well and may following the thinking: store up treasures in heaven where rust and moth do not corrupt. These types of gifts are the best investments as they are eternal.

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