There’s a deep wave of the giving back spirit sweeping our world. Helping others helps us in ways that another vacation or a super-sized house can’t begin to! People of all age groups are volunteering like never before and since New York society runs on philanthropy, we’ve highlighted a group of New Yorkers who are devoted to making an impact and helping people in need.

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ROSARIO DAWSON | Housing Works

Rosario Dawson grew up watching her mother volunteer at crisis centers and Housing Works, an organization devoted to providing housing for homeless families and people with HIV/AIDS. Inspired to think and work for other people, the A-list actress has helped raise more than $7 million in support of more than 20,000 homeless and low-income New Yorkers living with HIV/AIDS. ADAM BRAUN PENCILS OF PROMISE ©ELISABETH CAREN.

 

ADAM BRAUN | Pencils of Promise

In 2008, Adam Braun combined his building skills and a background in finance to start Pencils of Promise, a nonprofit with school-building operations in Laos, Nicaragua, Guatemala and Ghana. The organization seeks communities where a portion of funding can come from the community itself, deepening homegrown investment and increasing the project’s ability to self-sustain. PencilsOfPromise.org.

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JENNIFER FISHER | Fashion Targets Breast Cancer

Designer Jennifer Fisher lost a grandmother to breast cancer, and she herself beat a rare tumor, which triggered her involvement with Fashion Targets Breast Cancer. FTBC is a charitable initiative of the Council of Fashion Designers of America, which has raised nearly $50 million for breast cancer charities over the past 15 years. CFDA.com

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SCOTT HARRISON | Charity Water

In 2004, Scott Harrison left New York to volunteer in West Africa. During his two-year stay, he saw firsthand how people fell ill due to unsafe water and poor sanitation. He founded Charity Water upon his return to New York in 2006. The group is dedicated to bringing safe drinking water to people in developing nations. Since then, Harrison’s organization has funded 13,000+ water projects in 22 countries, providing 4.6 million people with clean water. CharityWater.org

 

Are you or someone you know Making An Impact? Let us know! Tweet @BellaNYCMag and use #MakeAnImpact!

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