We have identified below the charities which we believe to the the "most efficient" way of supporting aid projects financially while receiving a tax incentive for doing so.


The Africa Project is an all-volunteer organization based in Southern California where 100% of the donations go directly to serve the needs of AIDS orphans and AIDS education in rural Africa, in a region of the world with the highest percentage of AIDS victims per capita anywhere on Earth.  Board members and volunteers travel at their own expense to Nkandla, South Africa each year to visit and support the Sizanani Outreach which serves rural families with home-based healthcare, and the Sizanani Center, an orphanage which takes care of young children whose parents have died of AIDS. For more information and to donate, visit www.theafricaproject.com.

logo-crsCatholic Relief Services is one of the largest and most efficient aid organizations on Earth, serving people in more than 100 countries under the leadership of Catholic Bishops in the United States.  This is not a missionary arm of the church, but a true humanitarian charity, with administrative support from local and international Catholic institutions to keep the overhead costs down.  As a result, 93% of any donations given go DIRECTLY to services and programs, with only 7% for administration, fundraising and awareness.  To donate or learn more, visit www.crs.org.

The Volunteer Nursing website was created by Jessica McComas in 2009 at the start of her nursing career, mostly just as a way of holding onto and sharing some personal growth experiences that came about from travelling and volunteering as a nurse, first in Mexico and then in Africa.  Although she had travelled extensively before nursing school, Jessica found that travelling as a nurse instead of as a tourist gave meaning not just to her travels but to her life.

Jessica developed the website hoping to share her personal experiences, insights and revelations with friends and family plus nursing students and nurses, hoping the find others who have like-minded ambitions and goals, and to serve together in ways that volunteers nurses are uniquely qualified to serve, with compassion and teamwork and medical attentional and emotional support.  Part of the reason for sharing online is to publicly explore ideas for "what is next" and "where can we best use our talents and skills."

Many opportunites to serve come about somewhat randomly, mostly by keeping your ears to the ground.  When she was young, Jessica's father and uncle used to drive their families down deep into Mexico to visit and deliver supplies to an orphanage, so when her nursing school sponsored a Mexico service trip, Jessica was on board in a heartbeat.  The trip to Africa came about because her Aunt saw an HBO special entitled "The Orphans of Nkandla" and she started raising money in Southern California to help strangers on the other side of the world.  America is a great place filled with people with big hearts and huge emotional reserves, and to make the world a better place, all it takes is a few people opening a few doors.