Saturday, December 10, 2011

NBC's "American Giving Awards"

Tonight NBC presented its American Giving Awards, sponsored by Chase (link), where it presents five charities. 

The inning charity was “To Write Love on her Arms”, link here

The evening had opened with “Wish Upon a Hero”, a “social network” which allows a 1:1 match between need and helper, link.  

A charity related helping people get into college was “Let’s Get Ready", link.

A charity related to food was “Move for Hunger” (link).    A organization in Washington DC that performs a similar function is Food and Friends. 

But the emotional climax of the evening probably came with the Matthew Shepard Foundation, here.  

Some of the charities involved more of a very personal, time-involved approach from participants.  Some of the stories, as in the “Wish upon a Hero”, seem to stem as much from relationship and marriage failures as simply money or employment problems.   During the broadcast, in one video, a speaker said, “someday you will have children, too” – except that some of us won’t.  Some of us would have a hard time warming up to the relational or other situations of some of the people, because we never experience anything close to it.  Again, I see examples of this all the time: the people who have the most children can't afford to, and the people who can, don't want to. That’s a clue to what is so challenging about some of the charities. 

The evening calls to mind Oprah Winfrey's "The Big Give" a few years ago, and it seemed a little more focused.

The show also anticipates "CNN Heroes" Sunday night.

On the GOP Debate in Iowa (9-11 on ABC), each candidate was asked how he/she had faced hardship.  Michele Bachmann said her mother got divorced when she was a girl, and that she had to help support/tale care of her sisters. Did that contribute to her large family today?  Mitt Romney admitted he hadn't grown up poor, but Rick Perry had grown up without running water.  Ron Paul's wife helped get him through medical school. Newt, I can't remember -- Oh, he grew up over a storefront in Pennsylvania.  Gingrich made a strange pronouncement, a word of warning: that if we didn't get it right about Iran, our country wouldn't survive.

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