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Charity spotlight

A Natural Selection

What are your plans for Earth Day 2012? When you think of charities to help out, think trees and grass and critters, and the organizations working every day to protect them.

We love nature, so it's only natural that we love The Nature Conservancy too. This organization works around the world to save lands and waters for nature and people.

The Nature Conservancy has preserved more than 119 million acres of land and 5,000 miles of rivers worldwide — and they operate more than 100 marine conservation projects globally. With a foot in all 50 states and more than 30 countries, they protect habitats from grasslands to coral reefs in places all the way from Alaska to Zambia. Check Nature Conservancy out today.

Great idea

Earth Day is April 22, but you can celebrate all year long with clever craft activities!

One of our favorites is planting a simple herb garden. Just grab a grownup and a small planter. Decide on your three favorite herbs -- we recommend pizza toppers like basil and oregano, and mint for summer lemonade. Use a long rectangular planter and cluster the seeds in three areas so they grow together.

Start the seeds indoors now, and before you know it, you'll have a garden full of good taste. When the seedlings are sturdy in a few weeks, move the planter outside and enjoy your delicious greens!

The GOOD FUN! Book
What Are You Up To?

We'd love to hear what you and your friends are doing to help out. Let us know, so we can share your story with other readers. And you might win a check from our publisher for the charity of your choice! Send your email to This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it , and tell us about your party!

Busy Bees Helping Chicago

Sometimes it's hard to find volunteer opportunities that allow children under 10 to get involved. But in Chicago, there's a new organization that's creating a buzz.

The Honeycomb Project is a nonprofit group that creates and manages meaningful family volunteer projects for children to enjoy with their parents. Through activities from cleaning up a local beach to preparing breakfast at a shelter, Honeycomb's volunteer events help Chicago's kids learn about local issues like pollution, homelessness, literacy and more. And families get a chance to spend time together working for a common purpose.

Honeycomb partners with local organizations to create the very best family-friendly volunteer projects. They plan the logistics and buy supplies, even connecting parents with talking points and educational resources to start a discussion with kids and help them understand the issues and provide meaning to their actions.

Honeycomb's events are fun, safe and well-organized, making it easy for families to get out of the house and into the community. See what the buzz is all about at the Honeycomb Project.

Some Things You Can Do

There are always things you and your friends can do to help your neighborhood and the world. Just put your heads together and use your imagination, and you might be surprised by all that you can accomplish. Here is a list of some fun activities that can help make a difference:

  • Grab some trash bags and rubber gloves, and clean up your favorite local park.
  • Help plant a garden at your neighborhood senior center.
  • Set up a stand on your block to sell lemonade, homemade bookmarks, flower seedlings you've grown from seeds, or you name it!
  • Throw a pajama party and have your guests bring a new pair to donate to charity.
  • Invite your entire class at school to gather up gently worn shoes to donate to needy families.