By Lindsay Kneteman
It’s a tough world out there for a charity. In Canada, you’re competing against some 80,000 other organizations, and if you don’t have the budget for a big, slick campaign it’s easy to be overlooked. So we’ve decided to help the little guys out by spotlighting five registered Canadian charities that are all doing some great work, despite their lack of TV ads.
1. Justice for Girls
This Vancouver-based organization works to end homelessness, poverty and violence among girls by working with young women who have lived through those experiences. It offers paid internships and runs a number of campaigns, including one that monitors criminal cases involving girls.
2. Probe International
With the goal of exposing the downside of Canada’s foreign trade and aid policies, Probe International demands accountability from everyone from the World Bank to the Canadian government. Currently, it’s lobbying the feds to fund legal aid for those affected by China’s environmentally disastrous Three Gorges dam, a project that received Canadian financing.
3. The Marquis Project
In addition to assisting community organizations in East Africa and Central America with clean energy and tree-planting projects, the Marquis Project connects Manitobans with the developing world via presentations to churches and service clubs, its youth committee and Worldly Goods, the fair-trade store it runs in
Formerly known as the Sierra Legal Defence Fund, Ecojustice uses the court system to conduct battles to preserve Canada’s environment. Past victories include preventing seismic testing that could negatively affect humpback whales and preserving habitat for the endangered piping plover shorebird.
5. Walk Bravely Forward
Reintegrating federal convicts into the community is this B.C. agency’s mission. While it primarily works with those of Metis or Aboriginal descent, Walk Bravely Forward is willing to assist all offenders who want to become productive citizens.