Giving Thanks on Giving Tuesday

Hello friends! It's been a while since my last post and A LOT has happened in the world. October seems like ages ago, and we're already at the end of November!

Since I last blogged, I've been Rey for Halloween, been back to New York & in the room where it happens, been in disbelief and sadness by the Election results, and lost my phone. But I've also finished my Christmas shopping, which might be a record.

A photo posted by alice (@akangaru) on

That said, the roller coaster that was November, primarily because of choices and adversity we now face in the U.S. as a country, has left me feeling both stressed out and fired up. I've never been too politically outspoken, but what this election has shown is that none of us can afford to be bystanders. Citizenship in the U.S. is, to put it one way, a contact sport - and, of course, change doesn't come without effort and without cost. I know my role now is to remain vigilant and to help however and whenever I can.

Which brings me to #GivingTuesday, the Tuesday after the "biggest spending weekend of the year," when people are encouraged to give back - donate to charities, start fundraisers, volunteer.

In the spirit of that, I'd like to leave a few links to organizations who support things I care about and do so much good for the world. If you can spare some change, please consider donating today. Many of these organizations have matching incentives happening today, so any little bit you can give will actually have double, maybe triple the impact.

  • First Book - a nonprofit dedicated to providing quality education for children in need. They get books and learning materials into the hands of children who need them most. 

  • We Need Diverse Books - a grassroots organization working to change the publishing industry so that it produces more and better diverse books, "literature that reflects and honors the lives of all young people."

  • ACLU - defending individual rights and liberties in courts since 1920. They do so much work, and their work is more important now than ever.

  • The Erythromelalgia Association - they promote research and awareness of Erythromelalgia, a rare disorder that essentially causes burning pain in the extremities. There is currently no cure and no one way to treat it. 
    • This cause is slightly more personal because one of the best people I've met through the internet and the book community is also the person who made me aware of this disorder because she has it. She has spoken publicly about it before, which is why I mention this here. DONATE to TEA to support further research into this rare disease.

  • Donors Choose - Want to help specific teachers/classrooms and their projects? Donors Choose lets you pick the project you want to help fund and donate directly to that classroom!

  • FORCE 4 CHANGE / UNICEF: Force4Fashion with Target - if you like Star Wars and cool T-Shirts, consider buying one of the new Rogue One Force4Change shirts carried exclusively at Target. They are donating $5 of every shirt purchase directly to UNICEF from now until the end of the year. So shop, look geek chic, and do some good.

And if you can't donate money, don't sweat it. Non-money things you can do include:
  • volunteering your time and/or skills
  • donating gently-used items you don't use/need
  • calling your government representatives to voice your concerns (the new Twitter account, from people within the book community, @Roadto18 can help)
  • educate your friends/followers/neighbors/community on important causes & goings-on
  • signal-boosting organizations so they get as much exposure as possible

As always, thank you for reading through this. I am grateful for your readership and for the friends I've made through this blog and on social media. I hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday, and remember, you are worthy. Rise up.

P.S. There are a few more/ different links to causes/organizations featured at Girl on the Roam, including Eliza Hamilton's orphanage and how you can help the people of Flint, Michigan and the protesters of #NoDAPL.