Green Philanthropy For Families: 160 Simple Earth Honoring Gifts, Actions, Activities and Projects by Helen, Justin, and Alexis Deffenbacher

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This book contains 160 no/low-cost green philanthropy ideas for people of all ages. You can choose to begin in your own home or in your own backyard or with a gift, action, activity or project that involves community or global outreach.

"Every parent who wants to raise a nature-loving child should keep a copy of this book on their kitchen counter!" -Ken Finch, President, Green Hearts Institute for Nature in Childhood, Green Hearts INC.Org

Green Philanthropy For Families expands the meaning of “philanthropy” to include care for all life on Earth. The book and the website on which it’s based aren’t for families only—they’re also for individuals, nature clubs, school sustainability programs, giving circles, and other groups. There are twelve chapters, one for each category of green philanthropy included in it. Readers can choose to begin in their own homes or in their own backyards or with a gift, action, activity or project that involves community or global outreach.

Examples of simple, no/low-cost green philanthropy ideas from the book include: 1. Provide a micro agricultural or environmental loan of $25 to an entrepreneur anywhere in the world through Kiva.Org. 2. Give family and friends lots of “Green Hours,” with the goals of nurturing love and respect for the Earth and the desire to sustain all life on it. 3. Adopt a local farm and purchase a crop-share for approximately $15 to $20 a week. 4. Plant a rainforest tree for $10. 5. Give a Solar Cooker Kit to a family housed in a refugee camp.

Besides redefining “philanthropy” to include respect and care for all life on Earth, additional goals for the book and website are: to demonstrate that the small things we do matter, and that one person or one gift, project, or action not only matter but, collectively, can change the world; to show that green philanthropy doesn’t have to be complicated or expensive and that we can easily involve our future conservationists and environmentalists--our children and grandchildren—in what we love and respect.

In large and small ways people of all ages in every part of the world are engaged in green philanthropy, providing a wealth of ideas, inspiration, and hope for others. Green Philanthropy For Families is a collection of 160 simple ways in which everyone can practice random acts of kindness toward Earth and its inhabitants and for which only a small amount of money—or none at all—is required.

Helen Deffenbacher is a volunteer for the Green Omaha Coalition and a founding member of the Omaha chapter of Slow Food USA. She and her husband Ken, a retired professor, enjoy their roles as ecostewards in their local community and opportunities to work with people of all ages, including their older grandkids Justin and Alexis with whom Helen has co-authored Green Philanthropy For Families. A number of their gifts, projects, and actions are contained in the book. Helen has a master’s degree in education.

Justin Deffenbacher received the youth social justice service award in his church’s eight-state region for co-founding an ecology club run by and for youth. When he was a member of a community service group in his school called Project Citizen, his idea of providing healthier foods in the schools was chosen by club members and his group was among several that presented their projects to Governor Dave Heineman. He enjoys volunteering for service projects, especially prairie restoration and preservation. Currently he’s collecting used books for a local Reach Out and Read program.

Alexis Deffenbacher joined the youth ecology club in her church when it was first formed and signed up for various projects including selling Fair Trade chocolates, making posters to educate church members about Fair Trade, and volunteering for the club’s “Adopt-a-Trail” cleanup at Standing Bear Lake. She has volun-teered for the Omaha Humane Society and for the Henry Doorley Zoo’s project of creating a butterfly garden on the zoo’s grounds. She is presently collecting eyeglasses for Lions’ Recycle for Sight program.

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“That land is a community is the basic concept of ecology, but that land is to be loved and respected is an extension of ethics.”

  • Aldo Leopold, A Sand County Almanac

This book contains 160 no/low-cost green philanthropy ideas for families, individuals, and groups. You can choose to begin in your own home or in your own backyard or with a gift, action, activity or project that involves community or global outreach.

Wherever you decide to start, there are green philanthropy ideas appropriate for everyone in your family or group. Some are specifically geared toward youth or adults, but most can involve all ages.

A single random act of green philanthropy may not seem significant alone, but when it’s multiplied tens of thousands or a million times over it brings big results, saving: small farms, urban habitats, parks and refuges, organic foods, community gardens, native and heirloom seeds, wild places, wildlife, the ancient mountains of Appalachia, forests and rainforests, rivers, lakes, and streams and more. To share your own green philanthropy ideas, visit:

Publisher: Green Philanthropy For Families.Org - Published May 01, 2010
ISBN: 9780615331157    
130 pages - $10.95
Printed by Lightning Source & distributed by its partners: Ingram, Baker & Taylor, Bertram’s, Gardner’s, Blackwell Book Services, Cypher Library Supplier, Amazon, Barnes & Noble, The Book Depository, and


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Helen Deffenbacher

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