I intend this blog to be a mixture of my personal experiences with Multiple Sclerosis (MS) and news related to MS. Hopefully, I can shed an optimistic light on MS even though it is difficult to be an optimist living with MS.

Monday, January 24, 2011

More Ways to Help

Today, I spent some time trying to learn of more ways that I can help to fund MS research.  I mostly looked at the National MS Society's website.  Along with the obvious ways to donate, including pledging a participant of Walk MS, Bike MS or another similar event and donating your car, I found some pretty cool ways to "donate."

On my local chapter's page, I found this idea:  "Your trash can become our treasure! Our Kansas City office (7611 State Line Road in KC, MO) has a large recycling bin that’s open for your use. Every time we fill it up, we get paid for the paper! The bin accepts catalogs, magazines, newspapers, junk mail, office paper, fax paper, school paper, notebooks, and folders. So help us and the environment at the same time. Drop off your recycling in our parking lot today!"
I think this is a genius idea!  It is a no-cost, easy way to "donate."  I know it may seem like a pain to drive your recyclables somewhere when most places have some kind of recyclable pick-up, but if you reserved all of your paper recyclables and took them to the location once or twice a month, you could make a big impact.  If your household is anything like mine, you have a LOT of paper trash.  Between junk mail, used school notebooks, magazines, catalogs, and the like, we would come up with quite a bit of trash.  Then that trash can be turned into dollars for the National MS Society.  I was really frustrated to see that this is not offered in my area.  I emailed our local office and suggested that they look into something like that for my area.  If you live in the Kansas City area, you should definitely consider participating in this and if you know someone that lives in the KC area, forward this info to them.

Another great idea was found on the NYC Chapter website.  "Buy something for yourself and help the NYC Chapter in the process! First join iGive, then whenever you purchase items online at the mall at iGive, up to 25% is donated to the chapter, at no cost to you!"  Since so many people shop online these days, this is a no-brainer.  The problem is that this program probably has to compete with websites like Ebates and MyPoints which reward you for shopping online.  For more info, go to their website.

Another good idea from the NYC Chapter: "Raise money for the New York City - Southern New York Chapter just by searching the Internet using GoodSearch - it doesn't get any easier than this!
Raising money to help create a world free MS is just a mouse click away! Use GoodSearch.com like any other search engine (they've partnered with a leading search engine, Yahoo, to ensure the best results), and each time you do, money is generated for the chapter.  Every time you use GoodSearch, you raise approximately $0.01 for the New York City Chapter. Think about how many times people search the Internet each year - the pennies can quickly add up! For example, if 1,000 Chapter supporters searched twice a day, we would receive an estimated $7,300 per year to help fund our mission: a world free of MS. If 20,000 of our supporters and volunteers used it twice a day, we’d earn approximately $400 a day!"
For more info on this, click here.

The next time you buy flowers online, consider going through the Pacific South Coast Chapter (check it out).

The Central North Carolina Chapter offers the Lion Shop & Share program.  Food Lion has a new program that will help you raise money for MS called Lion Shop & Share. Once you register, each time you shop at Food Lion and use your MVP card, a portion of your total grocery purchase will be donated to the National MS Society.  For more info, click here.

The South Florida Chapter also provides "Purchasing that Supports the National MS Society:
Companies have joined the movement to create a world free of multiple sclerosis by donating a portion of their sales to the National Multiple Sclerosis Society – South Florida Chapter. We salute these companies for making the MS cause a part of their business."  To see the participating businesses, click here.

The Greater New England Chapter provides a number of "other ways to give," including making online purchases from participating businesses.  The next time you want to send a box of chocolates, consider visiting this chapter's site first.  For more info, go to their website.

The Ohio Buckeye Chapter also has a "Give While You Shop" program.  For information on participating businesses, click here.

Colorado and Wisconsin both have a "Tax Check-Off" Program.  To learn more, go to the Colorado site OR the Wisconsin page.

I know this is a lot of information, but I am so impressed with the various ways of giving that I had to share.  Hopefully, people from all over will see this and learn of a new, easy way to get more involved.  If you know of someone who might be interested in these opportunities to give, please send this information along! 

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