you don’t have to be a millionaire to fight poverty, illiteracy, and hopelessness on the front lines. if you’d like to go beyond check-writing philanthropy, these organizations can use your help (of course, they won’t turn down your money, either).

america’s promise
(703) 684-4500
founded by secretary of state colin powell, this alliance of almost 500 groups calls on volunteers to “build the character and competence” of young people.

habitat for humanity
(229) 924-6935 ext. 2552
you’ve heard of jimmy carter’s favorite charity. it may be well-known, but it’s still in need of helping hands. now worldwide, habitat brings together thousands of helpers to build homes for the disadvantaged.

hosts (help one student to succeed)
(800) 833-4678
stop complaining about schools and get involved instead. the country’s oldest and largest structured mentoring program needs individuals and business partners to tutor at-risk students in reading, math, and language arts.

the national mentoring partnership
(703) 224-2200
this organization serves as a resource center for groups and individuals who want to be mentors and provide young people with support, friendship, and constructive role models.