Donations Instead Of Gifts: 12 Charities To Help This Holiday

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SAN DIEGO, CA – APRIL 30: Family members embrace at the U.S.-Mexico Border fence during a ‘Opening the Door of Hope’ event on April 30, 2016 in San Diego, California. Five families, with some members living in Mexico and others in the United States, were permitted to meet and embrace for three minutes each at a door in the fence, which the U.S. Border Patrol opened to celebrate Mexican Children’s Day. It was only the third time the fence, which separates San Diego from Tijuana, had been opened for families to briefly reunite. The event was planned by the immigrant advocacy group Border Angels. (Photo by John Moore/Getty Images)

6. Border Angels

Cause: Immigrant rights

Why Choose This Charity: Border Angels, also known as Angeles De La Frontera, is a San Diego-based nonprofit that focuses on immigrant rights and immigration reform within the United States. As I’m sure you’re more than aware, immigration has been a major issue of contention in modern history (and, honestly, the rest of human history as well).

Border Angels provides outreach and legal assistance to immigrants, especially those within the San Diego area. Their day laborer outreach provides food, water, clothing, and other assistance to day laborers in the area, who are often undocumented immigrants.

Education and other forms of outreach have also proven to be important to this organization. Enrique Morones, the founder of Border Angels, is a frequent speaker throughout the United States, focusing on immigrant rights and immigration reform. He has also participated in public debates throughout the country, including some with infamous (and now unseated) Arizona sheriff Joe Arpaio and talk-show host Bill O’Reilly.

However, this organization may be best known for its emergency water program conducted in the region’s deserts. In this “desert water drops”, Border Angels volunteers place caches of clean water throughout areas frequented by illegal immigrants making border crossings.

Immigrants who cross into the United States from Mexico must often make the trek through arid desert and mountain regions. Deaths from dehydration and exposure are, sadly, relatively common. Desert water drops conducted by Border Angels volunteers provide much-needed water to people crossing into the United States.

Links to Send Gift Givers: Their “How You Can Help” page here (which includes a donation link).