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Egale.ca is ContactsforLess.ca’s November Group of the Month!

Egale

Egale CanadaWith November being Transgender Awareness Month, it’s a no-brainer that Egale Canada Human Rights Trust should be our group of the month! Egale is Canada’s only national charity promoting LGBT rights through research, education, and community engagement.

Founded in 1995, Egale’s vision is a world wherein every person can reach their full potential, free of bias and regardless of their sexual or gender identity. To this end, they have spearheaded and participated in numerous education and awareness campaigns, all with the ultimate aim of providing safer and more accepted lives for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transsexual individuals.

Most notable to us here at Contactsforless.ca is OUTshine 2017, a three-day summit that will bring LGBTQ+ and “ally” (non-LGBTQ+, but supportive) secondary school youths together with educators and community members to discuss what is happening in their schools, share resources and experiences, and celebrate their identities in an open manner that isn’t necessarily possible in their regular lives.

Egale boothAlso notable is Egale’s partnership with the You Can Play project. You Can Play was launched in 2012 with the goal of breaking down the stigma and barriers about being LGBTQ+ in traditional sports, an environment which has historically been hostile towards LGBTQ+ individuals and prevented many athletes from coming out and being themselves during their careers. As You Can Play’s Canadian partner, Egale provides awareness and inclusion training for athletes, coaches, leagues and organizations, and also assists with pro partnership programs which connect LGBTQ+ youth with leaders in the professional sports community.

The fact of the matter is that it’s 2016 – we’re far past the point where gender and sexual rights should even be an issue, and we are 100% behind any organization that’s fighting the good fight. This is why Egale Canada Human Rights Trust is November’s Group of the Month – 51% of the profit from every purchase made at Contactsforless.ca will, by default, be donated to Egale.

Of course, if there’s another cause that you find more important, you’re always free to choose from our list of over 50 different charities and non-profit organizations during checkout. No matter what your choice, know that we appreciate you doing your part to make the world a better place.

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Water.org is September’s Group of the Month

water.org

water.org

Water is the source of all life.

Our bodies are composed of 70% water. So why do 1 in 10 people in the world (over 600 million people) not have access to clean and safe water, and 1 in 3 people globally (2.4 billion) not have access to a working toilet? Water.org recognizes the importance of these issues and is doing tremendous work to help, and that’s why they are September’s Group of the Month.

The Water Crisis

You already know the statistics about access – but why is this a problem? To answer that, we’ll show you some more statistics:

  • Water-related diseases affect more than 1.5 billion people every year.
  • Every 90 seconds, a child dies from a water-related disease.
  • In Africa and Asia, women and children walk and average of nearly 6 kilometers every day, just to collect water.
  • Time spent gathering water equates to $24 billion in lost economic benefits annually.

Having access to safe and reliable water enables children to spend more time in school, and women more time to work to support their families and further their careers.

The Solution

water.org factA long-term solution to the water crisis requires an annual aid investment of US $1 trillion dollars, a far cry from the $8 billion currently directed towards these efforts. It’s this reality that helped Water.org, co-founded by Gary White and actor Matt Damon, understand that this was a problem that required more than pure charity to solve.

With that in mind, Water.org brought to life an innovation called WaterCredit, wherein agreements were made with local lenders to offer very small loans (typically less than $200) to families and communities in need, without the exorbitant interest rates (up to 20% of their income) that they were previously paying to loan sharks. This was made possible by Water.org agreeing to carry a significant portion of the financial risk.

These loans are used to establish household water connections and toilets, while also giving the borrowers the important sense that they were not simply receiving a hand-out, but actually taking control of their own lives and empowering themselves. WaterCredit loans have a nearly flawless repayment rate of 99%, and these funds are recycled back into the WaterCredit program to assist even more families and communities.

Our Part

WaterCredit has reached nearly 4 million people so far, and that number does not include the help that Water.org has provided by assisting in and planning various water projects around the globe. $8 trillion is a mighty big number, though, and they’ll need a lot of help to get there!

ContactsForLess.ca believes that we’ve spent long enough taking for granted the convenience of drinkable tap water and the dignity of a working toilet, which is why we are very happy to make Water.org our Group of the Month for September. 51% of our profits from every sale this month will, by default, be donated directly to Water.org.

Remember, if there’s another cause that’s near and dear to your heart, during checkout you have the option of choosing from over 50 different charities and non-profit organizations that ContactsForLess.ca is proud to support!

And make sure to watch our video, where Erika tells you about September’s Group of the Month!

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One Laptop Per Child Canada is August’s Group of the Month

one laptop per child

Connecting Children, One Laptop At A Time

one laptop per child canada

Think about all of the ways that you’re connected to the world – your smartphone, your tablet, your laptop or desktop computer, your television. Think about the ways that those devices give you a broader understanding of the world around you, and the ways you use them to educate yourself and fulfill the social aspect of your lives.

Now imagine that you didn’t have any of that. Could you make it in today’s technological society? Probably not – but that’s the situation thousands of aboriginal children in our very own country are facing right now. They are living in the northern territories and on reserves, without the resources necessary for a modern education. One Laptop Per Child Canada (OLPC Canada), in cooperation with One Laptop Per Child, has been hard at work trying to help this, and that’s why we’ve chosen them as August 2016’s Group of the Month.

What Are They Doing to Help?

Since 2007, One Laptop Per Child has been supplying children around the world with low-cost, power-efficient, and durable laptops, custom designed for the unforgiving weather and living conditions that many of these children endure every day. As of 2011, they had distributed over 2 million laptops to children around the world, and they have distributed countless more since then.

In 2010, OLPC Canada recognized the need for a similar system here in Canada and began their efforts, to date assisting more than 9,000 Aboriginal youth in this country.

Tell Me About the Laptops!

One Laptop Per Child’s custom “XO” laptops allow these children access to the latest learning materials available, without dealing with the expense and logistics of acquiring hard-copy textbooks. The laptops are pre-loaded with nearly 30 different educational programs, covering everything from reading and writing to even musical composition and basic computer programming.

With the laptops, whenever One Laptop Per Child is able to provide a reliable and low-cost access point, the children are often able to access the internet. Even in cases where internet access is impossible or infeasible, the laptops are still capable of networking with other nearby laptops, allowing the children to share information and work cooperatively.

The XO laptops supplied by OLPC Canada are also pre-loaded with apps and books which highlight Aboriginal languages and history, providing a valuable tool for the preservation of Aboriginal culture.

Why Laptops, Though?

One Laptop Per child CanadaThe platform is based on specifically supplying laptops, as opposed to a desktop machine or community-access centers, because of the importance of mobility. When the children are able to take their laptops home, their entire family can engage in the experience, broadening the reach of One Laptop Per Child Canada’s mission.

The Group of the Month

We take for granted a lot of the luxuries that are available to us in the digital age – the same tools that we use to look up a trivia answer when we want to settle an argument, or to figure out where we want to go for dinner, can open up limitless possibilities for children who simply aren’t so lucky. What One Laptop Per Child Canada does doesn’t just affect these children in the moment; the developmental tools that they’re given are useful to them for life.

That’s why, as our group of the month, One Laptop Per Child Canada will be the default donation recipient for every order placed with ContactsForLess.ca in August 2016! Of course, if there’s another cause that’s important to you, our list of over 50 different charities and non-profit organizations is always available to choose from during checkout!

Whatever your cause is, just remember that at ContactsForLess.ca, we’re not just about saving you money, we’re about saving the planet!