This post was originally written in December 2014, for Giving Tuesday. We're choosing to re-promote it on March 8, for International Women's Day.
In our original story, Melinda Gates told BuzzFeed: "At the very least, women everywhere in the world need three things to be able to reach their full potential: health, decision-making power, and economic opportunities." Each of the charities listed below helps to accomplish at least one of those things. If you have any money to spare, consider donating to one or several of these worthy organizations.
Happy #WomensDay, everyone.
After Black Friday and Cyber Monday, charities, business, students, families, and individuals across the world will take a day to focus on giving back and helping those in need. It's called Giving Tuesday, and it happens on the first Tuesday of December — December 2, 2014 this year.
For Giving Tuesday 2014, Melinda Gates, co-chair of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, shared her top five recommendations for charities that benefit women and girls across the world.
"At the very least, women everywhere in the world need three things to be able to reach their full potential: health, decision-making power, and economic opportunities," Gates told BuzzFeed.
Each of the following charities helps contribute to at least one of those pillars.
1. The United Nations Foundation's Shot@Life campaign
The Shot@Life campaign provides vaccines to children in need, and conducts vaccine awareness and advocacy. And this is incredibly important work — 1.5 million children die from vaccine-preventable diseases each year.
Bill and Melinda Gates co-wrote a blog post about the charity, and why they're choosing to donate to it. From their post:
We like to say vaccines are miracles because they have literally saved the lives of millions of children. In fact, in the last 20 years, child deaths have fallen by almost 50%, and vaccines are a big part of that story. That is remarkable progress.
But, there are still far too many children living in poor countries who do not get the vaccines they need to grow up healthy and thrive. That's why we're encouraging people to give to the United Nations Foundation's Shot@Life campaign that helps get life-saving vaccines to the children who need them most.
And then there's this: The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation will match all contributions made to Shot@Life on December 2, 2014. So your donation goes twice as far.