March 7, 2011 More than 30 years ago, Rosanne Haggerty founded a group called Common Ground, which turned a hotel on the verge of being condemned in New York City's Times Square into permanent housing for the homeless. Common Ground's program has become a national model for helping the chronically homeless.
February 21, 2011 NWNewsFifteen million troubled kids who need a mentor don't have one, according to The Mentoring Group. In Portland, Ore., Friends of the Children tries to bridge that gap through paid mentors. Anthony Blackmon credits the program for giving him confidence to pursue his dream in music.
February 9, 2011 Almost half the world cooks its food with solid fuels like wood and charcoal. But these methods are bad for the environment and can be deadly. At a nonprofit organization in Oregon, engineers are building and tweaking stoves that use minimal wood, don't release much smoke — and are cheap enough for the Third World.
January 17, 2011 Giving + Learning, a nonprofit in Fargo, N.D., matches up retirees with refugees. In the past decade, volunteers have taught refugees how to speak English, how to drive — or they have simply visited those without a car or job who may feel isolated.
December 15, 2010 Six years ago, retired cosmetics executive Mark Goldsmith got involved in a nonprofit that encourages New York civic leaders to volunteer in schools. But instead of going to a school, he went to a prison. Now Goldsmith runs a nonprofit that helps inmates at Rikers Island prison ace job interviews — and go after their dreams.
November 26, 2010 A few years ago, Blake Mycoskie traveled to a remote indigenous village in Argentina. There, he noticed that most of the children had no shoes. So he created Toms, a Santa Monica, Calif.-based company that gives away one pair of shoes for every pair purchased. The company recently celebrated donating 1 million pairs.
November 10, 2010 Nearly 10 years ago, Jock Brandis promised women from Mali he'd help them find a better way to shell their peanut crop than one by one with their hands. That promise led him to create a gizmo that is now powering a quiet agricultural revolution in 17 countries.
October 8, 2010 Parents of children with severe disabilities have many challenges and concerns. One big worry: Who will care for their children after the parents are gone? A Canadian organization creates plans for future care so parents can have peace of mind.
October 1, 2010 Well over half the kids in this country don't have easy access to a community playground. That bothered Darell Hammond so much, he started an organization to create places for children to play. So far, over nearly 15 years, the group has helped build more than 1,800 playgrounds.