Books, blogs and Burma
crossposted to Snapshot Chronicles
We interrupt our discussion of blogger relations, good and bad, to bring you some news from around the blogosphere from friends new and old.
First, from my good friend Yvonne DiVita. In addition to being one of the leading experts on marketing to women online, Yvonne runs Windsor Media Enterprises, a print-on-demand publishing company that guides authors through the self-publishing process. This fall, they are going to put on a conference called Books, Blogs and Beyond: Publishing 3.0, and they are asking for our input to create a program truly relevant to the attendees' needs. If you are an aspiring author, or even just interested in the impact of social media like blogs on the publishing process, please take their survey. Let Yvonne and her team know what you'd like to know.
Speaking of authors, this week the momosphere was alive with buzz about Sleep Is for the Weak, the upcoming collection of essays by parent bloggers edited by Rita Arens. Read the story of how Rita shepherded this project from her dream to a reality on her blog Surrender, Dorothy, and then immediately add the blog to your feed reader. She is an excellent writer, as are the many moms, and one dad, included in the book. I can't wait to get my copy, already pre-ordered on Amazon.
One reason I am so excited about her book, apart from the fact that Rita is an awesome woman who deserves the success and accolades that are and will be coming her way as the result of the book, is that it will expose an even larger audience to the amazing writing on parent blogs. Major media always seems to focus on mom blogs as a market, the privacy issue -- that parents are writing about their kids, and dooce. What it misses is what a damn fine group of writers this is, and not just Heather Armstrong. I read many blogs. Some of the best writing BY FAR is on parenting blogs, and not just about their kids. Politics, culture, sex, travel, art, photography, philanthropy, the economy. Just some of the topics you'll find on parenting blogs along with daycare, diapers and disasters.
Finally, here's a simple way to donate to the relief effort in Burma that won't cost you a cent, just a comment. Leave a comment on this post at digTrends by May 31st, and Digital Influence Group will add $10.00 to its donation check to the US Campaign for Burma. They've capped the donation at $5,000 -- that's 500 comments on their post, and I hope they get there. Hat tip, Mack Collier on Twitter.
crossposted to Snapshot Chronicles. Warning: long post
Power. Of the collective. Of the parent. Of the blogger. That's today's topic.
Let's start with what the collective can achieve when we come together. In this case, for charity. As you may recall, about two weeks ago, in one of my Camp Baby case study posts, I suggested that companies interested in reaching women bloggers put their money into the charities that we care about. Not that we don't like schwag or free products, or hell, even some link love. But I have yet to meet a parent blogger that doesn't contribute what she or he can to charity. It's why BlogHers Act has such resonance for the community.
Which is why I was thrilled to get an email from Kristen Chase this morning telling me about the latest Parent Bloggers Network BlogBlast campaign. PBN has teamed up with Johnson's to promote Johnson's Baby Cause, the company's new charitable giving site to support the health and well-being of mothers and children worldwide. Details of the promotion are on the PBN post, but short version, blog about how you'd like to be recognized on Mother's Day. Both Johnson's and PBN are donating prizes; I love the PBN prize -- a $25 credit to donate to the cause of your choice at Baby Cause. Ten winners. There's also a charity auction for gently used celebrity baby goods on eBay that will benefit Baby Cause.
Why do I like this so much? To start with, charity. That will get me EVERY TIME. Which I am sure Kristen knew when she emailed me. And then there's the Johnson's component. I absolutely love that this Parent Bloggers Network campaign came about as a result of Lori Dolginoff from Johnson's and Kristen meeting at Camp Baby, a fact which I confirmed with Lori before posting tonight. (And perhaps of Lori and Julie Marsh, Kristen's partner in PBN, not meeting for all the reasons we already know.)
I'm sure the broader charity effort was well underway before Camp Baby earlier this month but as a direct result of the event, Johnson's decided to team up with PBN to promote it. In short, it learned how valuable it is to work with people within the community, and that, my friends, is worth the price of admission.
Okay, you get here for free, but you know what I mean.
Another way we exercise our power as bloggers is when we help build our community. As Kim Moldofsky did today with a "link love" post for her Camp Baby friends on parentcenter. Yet another consequence, and hopefully not unintended, of getting 56 women with common interests together.
The power of the collective to effect change. Use it. Write a post. Help a friend with a little link love. Donate, to Baby Cause or BlogHers Act. But I'm thinking, buy a new diaper bag.
Parent bloggers have power. And that's the segue into my next topic, which is to tell you about a project that launched its public beta today called ParentPower. Full disclosure: I've been consulting for the company developing ParentPower, advising them about the parent blogger space.
What is ParentPower? It's an application for parenting blogs. There’s a lot to it – a desktop widget, an index of top parenting blogs, links to sites we visit all the time like Flickr, Twitter and parenting sites, an RSS reader, the weather, and more. More details in the overview on the site.
Why do I like this project? Because Active Access, the company that developed the app, asked. And they listened. And not just to me and my colleague Kami Huyse, who brought me into the project. They did focus groups with parent bloggers. They've started talking in Twitter. We're talking with BlogHer about the best way to work with the community. And we are asking for even more feedback in the beta process. So if you decide to download the app, please complete the Polldaddy survey or send email to firstname.lastname@example.org
As everyone who reads my Marketing Roadmaps blog knows, I have my concerns about indexes, but Active Access has done a good job here. There's no subjective component in the Parent Power index and blogs that score the same get the same rank.
Personally, I'm LMAO that my personal/parent blog Snapshot Chronicles, which isn't even a year old and has a very small number of loyal, wonderful subscribers, currently has a better ranking on ParentPower than Marketing Roadmaps (three+ years old, 1000 plus subscribers) has on the AdAge Power150. I'll let you draw your own conclusions, but (hint hint) I think the ParentPower algorithm is better (no offense meant, AdAge 150), and hope those parent bloggers whose blogs are not yet included in ParentPower will add them and knock me down the pegs I probably deserve.
The power of parents. That's truly what the folks behind ParentPower want to support, and I urge you to give your feedback. On the application, on the index, on whatever floats your boat. The feedback from the parent blogger focus groups was invaluable, and really, we just want "more, more..."
And finally, power. As in laptop power supply. Marketing Roadmaps readers will remember rmy sad tale, posted on April 3, of a broken iGo power supply during my trip to NYC for BlogHer, the 4-hour search for parts and the $130 I spent on new cables because, contrary to the information provided by iGo support, neither Best Buy nor RadioShack stocked the part I needed. Well, today I got an email from a marketing manager at iGo offering to replace my broken part. While I am tickled pink? purple? some other color? at the fact that finally, a company actually read my frakking blog and responded, customer support already sent a replacement part at no charge to my home. Which is great and much appreciated, but does not compensate for the added costs or the wasted time while I was in NY. Nothing really can, but if they respond back to my reply, I will tell them that I'd be thrilled with some free product to give away on Snapshot Chronicles. (Sorry Roadmaps readers, all giveaways happen on the personal blog.)
We do have power as bloggers. Our opinions of companies do matter, as this study by SNCR demonstrates, and companies are starting to listen. Slowly.
So use that power wisely. Don't bitch to hear the sound of your own voice or read the melody of your own words.
Write to change things for the better.
Addendum - credit where credit is due (4/30/08)
Kim Moldofsky wanted to make sure everyone knows that
credit for the weekly post sharing idea goes to Jodi at www.momsfavoritestuff.com
In my zeal to be transparent about my small part in the ParentPower project, it came across to some readers as though this was my project. While I think ParentPower is a great product and hope folks try it out, I simply provided some advice about the parent blogger space. ParentPower was developed by Active Access. Livingston Communications and Kami Huyse led the product marketing, strategy and PR, and Shannon Whitley developed the Index algorithm.
What I learned from Camp Baby (part 2 of 2)
On Monday, I covered the the mom bloggers' perceptions of Johnson and Johnson's Camp Baby and I was hoping to follow that up with an interview with the event organizers. Unfortunately, they haven't responded to my queries. I can only hope that it was because my emails got caught in their spam filter or something...
While I could take a guess at their goals for the event, my speculation would still just be my opinion, and I certainly can't pass judgment on whether it was a success. That's their call, based on what they hoped to achieve.
But I go on vacation on Friday and need to wrap up my J&J coverage before I leave. Other stories beckon. For now, we'll have to be satisfied with their public statement about the event on their blog and this short article in BrandWeek.
Instead, this wrap-up post will focus on what we can all learn from Camp Baby. Starting with some advice from two women who attended. I asked them what advice they would give to another consumer products company considering doing a similar event. Jodi, from Mom's Favorite Stuff said:
"I’d recommend re-vamping the invitation process. It should have been more streamlined, and more explicit (ie: no kids, space is limited, etc). If another consumer products firm wanted to do something similar, I’d just recommend being very clear and transparent. Explain the objectives, the expectations, and I think most mommy bloggers will appreciate it!"
Christina from A Mommy Story also pointed out that they packed a lot into a very short time, and it took her a couple days to recover from the exhaustion. Her advice for another company trying to reach out to mom bloggers:
"Events like these will work to draw in a lot of attention - just look at all of the Twitter noise from those three days! But be prepared for the snark as well as the positive blogging. And please, if you ask for our opinion about your products, be ready for a lot of criticism along with praise. We're an educated bunch, and we know what we're talking about. Take our suggestions seriously. I will be watching to see if J&J implements any of the suggestions we gave them."
Let's make these the foundation for our learning points.
One. Be clear and explicit from the get-go. Make your expectations clear so the bloggers can set theirs. If you are going to do an event (more about my evolving opinion of events in a bit), define your group carefully and as narrowly as possible. If you can't accommodate nursing moms or people who can't stay the whole time, don't invite them.
Two. Transparency. It is more than just asking bloggers to acknowledge the junket. It starts with clearly communicating the objectives of your event to the participants. It also means being honest about your agenda. Christina commented in her email, which I quoted in the earlier post, that it was clear that the sessions all had an unacknowledged product component. Guess what: the women figured it out.
Three. It's not a one-way conversation any more. Just because a company says it is so does not mean that customers/bloggers will believe it. If you ask for feedback and opinions, be prepared. For critcism and to take some action. Or don't ask. As Christina points out in her comment above, the women at Camp Baby had strong concerns about chemicals in baby products. Did J&J take them seriously? Only time will tell, but it does sound like the company was surprised at the strength of the bloggers' convictions. And knowledge about the subject.
Four. You've read it here before. Read the blogs. Over time, not over night. You have to know what the bloggers are interested in -- to invite them, to create a program that interests them, to have a relationship. There isn't a ranking system or index available that can replace the knowledge gained by truly getting to know someone. At a minimum, as Julie (mothergoosemouse) says in the comments to my previous J&J post, at least read the About Page. You'll be amazed at the wealth of information.
Finally, and this is my opinion, not something from the feedback or comments about Camp Baby -- consider that a blow-out event may not be the best way to engage over time with the customers you are trying to reach.
Lindsay Ferrier (Suburban Turmoil) wrote this week about how the momosphere is changing, and not necessarily for the better. The focus on monetizing the blog, getting ad revenue, paid posts and all expenses paid junkets, whether to New Brunswick New Jersey or Orlando, has created a different, less friendly world than before. So far 72 comments and counting.
So the question is, what is the best way for companies to engage with bloggers? With their customers.
Sure, a big event can be a lot of fun -- even for the organizers, there is a certain exhiliration in having pulled it off, but wining and dining is a date. Getting to know someone, helping them achieve their goals, adding value consistently over time. That's a relationship. As a marketer, I want a long-term relationship with customers. Not a one night stand. Generally, those aren't terribly satisfying.
How can you help the blogger all the time, not just once? Access to company resources for research? Involvement in new product development? User Councils? Think outside the box, and not just about getting this or that product reviewed. What is the customer relationship with the company over time? What will make her love you? Why do you love her?
If you work for one of those consumer companies salivating over the mom blogger segment, or even a smaller firm that wants to reach women bloggers, including mom bloggers, I have some advice for you.
If you want to reach women bloggers, especially in the United States and Canada, don't dump thousands of dollars into a big event. Devote a fraction, just a fraction, of that budget, to supporting a BlogHers Act initiative. This year, the focus is on maternal health in the US, the environment in Canada, but there are other causes within this umbrella as well. I guarantee you, you will reach more people, garner more positive attention for your company, your brand, than any slick event.
Here are just a few ideas, all of which I came up with driving to a business lunch today. Imagine what we could do with a bit more thought.
- Make a donation. Through BlogHer's widget or through a blogger whose cause you support;
- Give products to women bloggers in your network for giveaways/raffles on their blogs;
- Match donations over some specified period;
- Create a contest or giveaway on your site to benefit BlogHers Act -- more complex than the other ideas but potentially quite rewarding.
Keep in mind, this is how I make my living, but today, in this post, the advice is free. I hope like hell someone pays attention.
But, no fooling, you want to explore one of these ideas and need some help, give me a call. 978 562 5979.
The power trip
Some of you may have seen my tweets yesterday about my broken iGo power supply. In which case you will know that the power trip to which I refer has little to do with my ego and everything to do with my journey to find something, anything that would power my laptop and my Blackberry.
Here is the woeful tale. On the train to NYC on Wednesday, my iGo power adapter cord broke. It being the ONLY power supply I have with me for my laptop and my Blackberry and my iPod, I was pretty well screwed. I called my husband from the train and asked him to call iGo customer support to find out where in NY, preferably near the hotel, I could get a replacement part. Luckily, I only bought it in late January and still had the box with the model number in my office.
God bless my husband and high marks for effort to the iGo support techs. They had to do multiple calls because they had to check with me twice with questions about the broken bits. The recommended solution was for me to pick up a replacement part here in NYC. The iGo support tech told David that Radio Shack and Best Buy stocked the part, so off I went to the Radio Shack in the Manhattan Mall right next to the hotel. Unfortunately, Radio Shack did not have the part, so the Radio Shack sales rep recommended a basic wall adapter. Ka-ching $40.00 Back to the hotel I go to charge my phone and get some work done.
Then we have the OOPS. The wall adapter does NOT work with the laptop tip, only the small device tips. Back I go to Radio Shack. Where I learn that you have to buy a full converter package to charge a laptop. Wondering why the Radio Shack sales rep earlier in the day didn't know that, off I go to Best Buy (12 blocks away) to see if they have the replacement part.
Best Buy on 44th & 5th doesn't stock ANY iGo accessories of ANY kind. And I'm getting desperate. So I buy a regular power supply. Ka-ching $90.00
If you are keeping track, I've now spent $130.00, and about 3 hours on my "power trip." On top of the time that David spent on the phone with the iGo support techs while I was on the train. Because a $130.00 product that I've had for about 2 months broke. If you are still keeping track, that's $260.00 all in.
Now, iGo is sending the replacement part to the house, but really what the company should have done is fed-exed the replacement part to me here at the hotel. At their cost, not mine. From some of my husband's comments, it sounds like he did discuss this possibility with the iGo tech, but the overnight shipping would have been at my cost, not iGo's. Since all I needed to do was buy a replacement part, why spend the money...
Well, it didn't work out that way. I think the iGo techs meant well, but the information was bad. And I wasted time and money.
Tuesday I wrote, once again, that companies don't seem to be replying to bloggers' unsolicited comments, and it doesn't seem to matter whether the posts are negative or positive. The silence is generally deafening unless it is a very high profile blogger. I have no illusions about my profile so it doesn't surprise me that I've never heard from AAA, who I blasted in December, and Verizon Wireless, whose customer service I have complimented on more than one occasion both here and on Twitter.
Let's see if iGo is paying attention to the the blogosphere beyond the A-list...
The really top marks for this whole mess go to my husband for trying to sort this out for me while I was on the train. If you see him, tell him I said so.
He doesn't read my blog either.
Slurping Life and love for Parker
cross posted to Snapshot Chronicles
Last month, I told you the story of Katie Gardner, off to Uganda to take photos with children in the IDP camps. Katie was a recipient of donated photo gear that HP sent bloggers who wrote about the Capture Your Ever After photo contest.
Today, I want to tell you what Melody from Slurping Life has decided to do with her thank you gear. She is hosting an "online love offering" to raise money for the healthcare costs of a young boy with numerous medical issues. The HP photo gear is the featured prize in the associated raffle.
When we came up with the idea to give the bloggers some gear to donate to a charity of their choice, we knew they would have no trouble coming up with deserving recipients.
But the creativity of their choices has exceeded my wildest expectations. That a digital camera and printer and some photo paper could make a real difference in the life of a sick little boy and his family... That a digital camera and printer and some photo paper could make a real difference for the children in the IDP camps...
Makes you feel good. Real good.
Finding Hope in Photos: Children and Uganda
cross-posted to Snapshot Chronicles
The background: Part of friendship is to say thank you. We decided to thank the bloggers who wrote about the contest by making a donation of an HP digital camera, compact photo printer and some supplies to a charity of their choice.We also decided to send the gear directly to the women, so they could have the pleasure of donating it personally to their favorite local charities.
Because the donation aspect was not promoted in advance, it was a bit of a surprise to the bloggers when they got the email offering them the gear, but none of them had any trouble thinking of a cause that meant something to them personally. They also all took the time to let us know what they planned to do with it, even though we didn't make it a requirement that they do so.
Tracey Clark's donation is going to war-torn Northern Uganda next month with Katie Gardner of San Diego.
Katie is part of a group connected with Children of the Nations. They will be spending three weeks working with children and families in the IDP (internally displaced people) camps. Some of the folks going will be doing counseling, but Katie and small group of four or five others will be doing photo projects with the children.
She told me that working with third-world children, giving them a chance to use photography as a creative outlet has been a dream of hers ever since she saw the documentary Born into Brothels which documents the lives of children who live in Calcutta's red-light district.
"When kids take pictures, they have a unique view. I'm really looking forward to helping these children experience the world in new ways through photography. I hope it gives them hope for the future."
Including the camera and compact printer donated by HP, Katie has two brand new digital cameras, two printers, a handful of used polaroid cameras and cash donations from friends and family to purchase supplies. They still need a scanner so they can scan in the polaroids and leave the originals with the children. If you'd like to help, drop Katie a note at email@example.com.
Katie thinks it's important that we hear and see the smaller stories from Africa and other third world nations, not just the larger than life efforts of celebrities like Madonna and Bono so she is developing a blog to document her Uganda trip. You'll also be reading more about Katie's project on Snapshot Chronicles and on Tracey's blog, Picture This.
Over the summer, Katie's kids in Uganda, Tracey's daughter Julia (age 9) in California,Â my son Douglas (age 7) here in Massachusetts and two friends of Katie's in San Diego, ages 7 and 9, will take pictures using some simple themes, including laughter, friends, sunshine and where I live. When Katie returns in August, we'll do a series of posts showing their worlds through their eyes. It should be interesting to see the differences and similarities between the American and Ugandan children.
Katie says she hopes these pictures will help Americans better understand what is happening in Uganda:
"Not only do I want the kids in Uganda to have a creative outlet to think about their lives in a new way, I want people back home to be transformed by seeing the world though these kids' eyes. And I want both sides to really see the potential for hope in places where people have been suffering for so many years. I want people back home to be moved to see how they can make a difference; and even if not in Africa, then how can we make a difference in our own backyard? I'm lucky enough to go overseas, but it's so easy to be the catalyst for change in our own families and neighborhoods when we allow ourselves to open our eyes to what's going on around the world."
Bon voyage, Katie.
Check out Invisible Children, another group that helps the children of Uganda.
Update, 27 June: Tracey's post Picture Hope
I'm Backstage at Sundance
In case any of you were wondering where I've been for the last week, and warning, where I am likely to be much of next week as well, I'm Backstage at Sundance.
Well not literally of course. I'm covering general news and monitoring the blogosphere for interesting Sundance tidbits for the HP blog, all from GetGood Strategic Marketing world headquarters in Hudson, Mass. But as we all know, there's only so much time to blog in any given week, so for the next little while, most of my writing will be over there, not here. And of course there's lots of great Sundance blogging from the folks on the ground at the festival -- film reviews, press conference reports, celebrity sightings. Be sure to check it out.
A few things I definitely want to note for my marketing and PR readers. I posted yesterday at Backstage about how Sundance is really embracing social media. In the last two weeks, they announced deals with iTunes and YouTube. Starting Monday, folks will be able to purchase short films from this year's festival on iTunes. And on YouTube, there's going to be a Sundance Channel section with all sorts of Sundance content -- festival coverage of course, but also clips from programming and so on. Not to mention the festival screenings being held in Second Life. More details and links in my post over at Backstage at Sundance.
HP is trying something new with the Backstage blog this year: "En Español." Many of the general posts as well as posts of interest to the Hispanic audience will be translated into Spanish. From HP Hispanic Marketing Manager Kathleen Haley's post today:
... we will have the most exciting entries about the festival, as well as specific entries that are relevant to the Hispanic market and our Hispanic readers -- whether that be a celebrity sighting, a great movie (Padre Nuestro or Summer Rain directed by Antonio Banderas) or a big event. Keep coming back to see the latest on HP and Sundance en Español!
Finally, regular readers know how strongly I feel about donating to charity, early and often. Friday at Sundance, actor Kevin Bacon announced a new charitable initiative that plays off the well known game Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon.
Together with Network for Good, Bacon has created sixdegrees.org, a charitable community in which celebrities and regular folks alike share their favorite charity. When you donate to someone’s charity through sixdegrees.org, you can display a “badge” from the person whose charity you supported on your Web site or blog. Linking us all together by doing good.
The giving season
Things have been pretty hectic the last couple of weeks, with no signs of slowing down until after Christmas. So posting here will be quite sporadic.
Before I (sort of) disappear to the holiday rush, I wanted to remind readers and friends that the best business gifts are donations to charity. So when you sit down to send holiday gifts to your clients and employees, instead of a gift basket or a bottle of wine, consider making a donation. If you know the person well enough, it is nice if the charity is important to them, but that isn't absolutely critical.
Here are the organizations that I am supporting this holiday season in honor of my clients:
- The Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation;
- The Wounded Warrior Project, a group that assists disabled veterans returning from Iraq and Afghanistan;
- Take the Lead, a group that provides services and support for people in the sport of dogs suffering from life-threatening or terminal illnesses.
Have a great holiday season, whatever traditions you celebrate, and don't forget to drop a few bucks in the Salvation Army kettle.
New Workshop: Getting the Message Out - Be Heard, Understood and Remembered
Two months ago, I gave a short talk on communications to one of the dog clubs to which I belong. This group does a fair amount of lobbying on the state level, and the club officers wanted to give the members some guidance on how to speak effectively with legislators and other influencers. I've turned the material into an one-hour workshop:
Getting the Message Out - Be Heard, Understood and Remembered
Whether you are talking to a reporter, lobbying a legislator, or speaking to your employees, you need to be heard, understood and remembered. Our one-hour workshop “Getting the Message Out” offers three tips that will help you tell your important message effectively and memorably.
While this is a for-profit endeavor when it comes to for-profit organizations, I'm happy to do the workshop pro bono for charities and civic groups. All I ask is that the group cover my expenses to get to their location. Drop me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org if you'd like more information.
Giving Back and Where WAS Scott?
It turns out I was the winner in the "Where's Scott" contest held by guest bloggers Andrea Weckerle and Bill Green over at the Media Orchard. My guess, "Maybe he is in France doing damage control for Dominique de Villepin," apparently came the closest. We'll find out tomorrow where he actually was.
I was asked to post my desired prize in the Orchard comments. After cycling through all the obvious jokes like give me all your traffic and so forth, I decided to be somewhat serious:
"For my prize for approximating Scott's location, I'd like him to make a donation to a charity, amount and charity of his choosing. And then tell us about the charity and why it is important to him. He doesn't have to share the amount."
Why did I pick this? Because I believe in giving back. Whatever our personal or professional problems may be on any given day, most of us in the PR/marketing blogging community are doing pretty well. We may not be rich or famous, but we probably have food on the table, a roof over our heads and the cash to fill our gas tanks. And we probably all support a number of charities as well as volunteer for community and charitable organizations. But... we rarely talk about it unless there is a tragedy like the tsunami or Katrina.
Robert French has tried to get the party started with Operation LinkLove but we need to do and say more, and more often. And not just about charities that are embracing social media. Every so often, we need to step away from the latest industry brouhaha and talk a little about the organizations and causes that mean something to us. They may not be blogging, but we are, and we can help spread the word.
That's a meme well worth participating in.
So here are just a few of the causes and organizations I have supported recently:
American Diabetes Association. The Hudson MA school system does a School Walk for Diabetes each year. All the children, starting in kindergarten, are invited to participate. Douglas and I walked a bit more than two miles, which is a lot for a six-year old. Why did we do it? Well, we have family members who have diabetes, but just as importantly, I wanted to start Douglas off early with the idea that we do what we can to give back.
School Year Abroad. This program is for high school juniors and seniors. It gives them an opportunity to spend a year in another country, living with a local family, but studying in a "regular" high school program so they can still graduate on time. I am an alumni (France 78-79) and have contributed to the scholarship fund nearly every year since I graduated from college. It was one of the best educational experiences of my life... still... and I would not have been able to go if I had not received financial aid.
What charities do you support, and why? I'm not tagging anyone -- except Scott :-) Tag yourself and give the causes you support some airtime.
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