Why I Donate & The Story Behind My Favorite Charity

Finding a charity that inspires you and makes you FEEL GOOD to give your money to isn’t always easy. But it’s a lot like falling in love when you know, you know. That’s what happened to me with the CdLS Foundation, at least, and it changed my life.

Deciding on a favorite charity is easier for some than it is for others. For me, I’ve loved the Cornelia de Lange Syndrome Foundation since the moment I first learned about it. That moment was when my cousin was born with CdLS and we were all struck with hundreds of questions. What is it? What do we do for her? What does it mean? The CdLS Foundation has eased the challenging road families face with this diagnosis by providing clarity, information, and support. They have made a very scary diagnosis feel as filled with compassion, love, and kindness as possible by connecting the CdLS community.

Okay, now, I’m sure you’re wondering … What’s CdLS?

CdLS is a genetic disorder present at birth which occurs in one in 10,000 live births. It causes a range of cognitive, physical, and medical challenges. When it comes to donating to CdLS, in my mind, it isn’t money that I am sending. It’s gratitude, endless thank you’s, peace of mind, trust, and the feeling that my little cousin will be taken care of as well as possible because of this small foundation. Whenever I’ve donated, organized events, ran a 5k for CdLS, or called to speak with a representative, I know who I’m going to speak with (most of the time), and they know who I’m speaking about when I say who my cousin is. Their office cares about your family as if it is their own. All actions to help them result in a huge impact on the lives of those that they serve.

This not-for-profit is a huge inspiration to me and has supported my family through so much. Without them, I can’t imagine how much harder it would have been to give Jenna the support that she needs to succeed. I hope that you have a foundation that you love as much as I love the CdLS Foundation, but if not, you’re always welcome to share favorites with me! Feel free to comment your favorite place to donate to in the comments below.

If you’d like to support CdLS, here are some ways to do so during the giving season:

Signing Together: A Guide to American Sign Language for Everyone

I wrote and illustrated this educational children’s book with the help of Valerie Schuman, an incredibly talented graphic designer. The goal was to help families communicate with their children with special needs. Sign language can change the way the special needs community lives on a daily basis. It can improve communication, confidence, focus, vocabulary, and IQ levels. This book also donates 50% of the profit to the CdLS Foundation. You can purchase the book here.

RM Beanie

The warm winter beanies in the Conscious Shop not only help you stay warm, they also help children affected by CdLS. Click here to pick your favorite color and make the purchase.


The CdLS Foundation takes donations by mail at this address:

302 West Maine Street #100

Avon, CT 06001-3681


Donate online now by clicking here.



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