Category Archives: Giving

The Human Touch by Spencer Michael Free ~ Don’t Get So Busy On Your Phone You Forget to Truly Connect!


A photo by Jonathan Velasquez. simple poem reminds us that genuine friendship is about the closeness of hands, hearts, and souls. It also, incidentally, captures the profundity of “touch” between Helen Keller, who was blind, deaf and barely speaking, and her mentor Anne Mansfield Sullivan.


“Tis the human touch in this world that counts,

The touch of your hand and mine,

Which means far more to the fainting heart

Than shelter and bread and wine;

For shelter is gone when the night is o’er,

And bread lasts only a day,

But the touch of the hand and the sound of the voice

Sing on in the soul alway.”


Please put your cellphone down right now, and touch or help someone who needs it.  That’s where the true connection in life is!


Spencer Michael Free was a poet who graduated from the College of Physicians and Suregons at John Hopkins University in 1880. Later, he went on to practice medicine and surgery. He taught natural philosophy, chemistry, Latin and algebra at Ohio Wesleyan University. In addition, Free had a passion for the arts and letters which led to his writing hundreds of medical papers as well as poems.He tried several times to enlist in the army and wished to protect our country abroad. However, he never did, so instead he wrote and aimed to give his readers a sense of hope.

The Human Touch was written shortly after World War I and the poem urges a sense of love and humanity. Free also published Shawnee Cabin and Other Poems. While he was not healing people of their physical ailments, he worked for various charitable organizations throughout his life.

A Time to Talk [NOT ON YOUR CELLPHONE] by Robert Frost


Living and Giving Team, I am asking you to talk today, and not about work. Talk to someone for joy. Talk to them for fun. Talk to them to give support.  And, do it live. There is nothing like slowing down, being present, and listening to another’s heart. Remember, it will change your life, too.

Lovingly, Pamela


“When a friend calls to me from the road

And slows his horse to a meaning walk,

I don’t stand still and look around

On the hills I haven’t hoed,

And shout from where I am, What is it?

No, not as there is a time to talk.

I thrust my hoe in the mellow ground

Blade-end up and five feet tall,

And plod: I go up to the stone wall

For a friendly visit.”


RB in the hauz

A native San Franciscan, Robert Frost is a four-time Pulitzer Prize winner in poetry.  His work mainly focused on making sense of complicated social and philosophical themes of rural life. He had six children with his wife, Elinor. Sadly, 4 of those children died at a young age. Consequently, Frost had a very difficult personal life, and he wrote powerful literature. Soon after moving to England with his family, Frost published his first book of poems which did very well. When he returned to the states, he was well received by the literary world. His works were so popular that he was soon published by those who had rejected him before his move to England, including The Atlantic. 

Frost was best known for his ability to depict rural life and the countryside. His first book of poems, A Boy’s Will, was published in 1912. Shortly after, he published North of Boston. One of his most famous individual poems is “The Road Not Taken.

Frost then became a professor at several colleges. At Amherst College, they named their main library after Frost. Throughout his life he received more than 40 honorary degrees.  He was asked to write and recite a poem for the John F. Kennedy’s inauguration, a huge honor.  His legacy still lives on today as he is one of the most famous poets.

“I thought about what is the happy.” ~Jae-Young Kim, UniversalGiving Intern

We are so fortunate at UniversalGiving to have a lovely team of interns every day. They are from all over the world.  What a team we have!


This is from Jae-Young Kim, a wonderful intern who had this to say in his writing sample:


“Hi Pamela, here is my part of free writing that you wanted.


I thought about what is the happy and how we are happy. Even though they said that you are a volunteer and that does it, I don’t think about that. Because she and me both give happy feelings to each other. After this happened,  I realized that helping people is such happy work.  That’s the happy.  That’s why I found the NGO companies and Universalgiving was the best company that I found. I really respected that your company gives donations directly and helps not only people but also animals.”


Jae-Young Kim is from San Francisco, California. He attended Pukyong National University in South Korea. When he was on our team, he was an executive assistant intern.

Beautiful Thoughts, Part 3: Fill Your Mind With Gratitude

It flows through your body, your soul and is a life force…

It will reach everyone you come in contact with.

It will make your heart happy, your mind clear, your body glowing. You are flushed with rosy gratitude in your complexion rather than ‘a grey day’ ashen look.

If your thought focuses on joy, your demeanor shows it.

If your thought is focused on your worries, your issues,
or even just a lot of thoughts about just you, you’ll appear grey.

Be grateful. It will lighten your step, your heart and your soul.

Fill your mind with gratitude.

Beautiful Thought #3: Fill Your Mind With Gratitude

I’m not waiting. Don’t you either!😀

Love, Pamela

PS. I hope you enjoyed this series on Beautiful Thoughts. Please feel free to read Beautiful Thoughts #1 and #2. What would you like to see in the next series?

“The emotional walls are worse than the physical walls” Hamdi Ulukaya, Founder and CEO of Chobani, on the refugee crisis.

“The emotional walls are worse than the physical walls” Hamdi Ulukaya, Founder and CEO of Chobani, on the refugee crisis.


Hamdi Ulukaya came from Ilic, a town in the Eastern region of Anatolia, where he worked on a farm with his mother creating yogurt and cheese. Now he’s running a globally-recognized company and serving refugees.  He’s committed to delivering excellent yogurt and making a significant dent in the refugee crisis.

Ulukaya moved from his home country in 1994. In Turkey, there’s little income disparity; a slightly richer family might have 50 more sheep or cows than their poorer neighbors. Instead, an individual’s wealth was determined by his reputation and how he worked within the community. In establishing his business and growing his success, Ulukaya has followed the same practices of relying on his reputation and community connections.

Chobani’s business model is inspired by the physical and emotional lessons of Ulukaya’s youth. He supports the pillars of dignity and community in his relations with both farmers and customers, and the natural, wholesome yogurt once produced by Ulukaya and his mother on a farm in Anatolia now comes from upstate New York.

Chobani is now a major player in the yogurt industry, and is a household name recognized for the Greek yogurt revolution it brought to the United States. It’s known for its nutritious and delicious yogurt that is made with only natural ingredients. Ulukaya was named one of the inaugural members of the President Ambassadors for Global Entrepreneurship Initiative by President Obama in 2014.


Today, Ulukaya has “made it big” and can walk away. He took some personality tests to find out what he should do.


Should he buy a yacht?



Buy some homes?


Live the high life?



Well, Ulukaya decided none of the above. (He just didn’t test positive for extravagance!)


He’s back at Chobani again- but not just producing natural yogurt. He’s donating more than 10% of company profits to serve refugees and other causes and has also employed over 600 refugees in his Upstate New York and Twin Falls plants.


He says:


“Every hour is different.  One moment it’s about customer. The next hour it’s about helping the refugees.”


Your company can help you to achieve your calling.  This isn’t just about money; it’s about how you earn it, and the relationships you build along the way.

Ulukaya is using that same connection with farmers which made him successful, with refugees.

“The emotional walls are worse than the physical walls” he says.

While the refugee crisis might scare you, unsettle you, even disillusion you, don’t build a wall.  Keep your mind supple and your heart open.  The first way we can do that is to think about each refugee with dignity and respect. Then, we can find a way to serve by giving our time, or perhaps donating funds.


Support those in need by helping to tear down the emotional walls that have been built and fortified with time. This cannot be achieved all at once, but can likely only happen brick by brick. Be ready to serve with respect in your mind and passion in your heart. We can learn from Hamdi Ulukaya’s approach to business at Chobani by prioritizing dignity and community in our efforts to aid refugees around the world.

Donate to World Food Program’s Syrian Relief Fund:


The Power Of Developing Nations

The most impoverished people in the world are allowing our own daily survival.

“Developing countries are home to roughly 80 percent of the world’s population, 98 percent of humanity’s hungry people, and 78 percent of harvested croplands.”  – Brookings Institute

While 98% of the world’s poor are in developing nations, they are producing nearly 80% of our food.
That’s a sobering thought.
Shouldn’t we help them more?
Support them with greater farming techniques
Help coordinate communications among them
Share the best practice in each region
Send them — not make them buy — the latest agriculture technology
And not at all least… genuinely appreciate our own privilege
The most impoverished people in the world are allowing our own daily survival. 
The most impoverished people in the world are allowing us to eat.

If that’s the case, we should be hopping on an plane with delegates of technology leaders, technology, resources, training programs, support, and much, much gratitude, for they are providing the nourishing meals we have with family each day.

farming post

Love: Vulnerability Balanced with Courage


 “I have learned about love. Love should be easy, free in connection; work, wonderfully so, as in investment; vulnerability balanced with courage, and always undergirded with trust. It should be grace, graced and grateful. It should uplift you.”

Love – we feel it, we know it, we believe in it. And I think it truly is indispensable.. we can’t live without it. As we peel away the layers of love… one I’d like to cover today is:

Vulnerability Balanced with Courage.

Love isn’t always easy for we must be open.  Are you willing to love even if you are hurt?

Because a relationship didn’t work the way you’d prefer… or a church committee member spoke harshly to you… your idea got shot down at work or a precious pet ascended to heaven…

I know… it hurts… of course it does…

So be gentle with yourself, first.

But dear leader – we have to have the courage to soften our hearts, stay receptive, and be open to love at all times.  And yes, that is at home and work.

This allows us to give the most to the world, and to ourselves.

Yes, at all times.

I know that might be hard to hear… Hang in there…

So there may be something that shut you down recently. Well, it’s time to unshutter the door and open back up. Take your heart out of the basement, or release your self-imposed sequestration in the attic.🙂

Let’s be those loving, beautiful individuals, who deserve to receive and give love. And other people need it too!

Remember, to receive the benefit of love, we have to have courage.

“Love is Vulnerability Balanced with Courage.”

–Sunday, November 29th, 1998. 10:20pm.


Pamela Hawley is the founder and CEO of UniversalGiving, an award-winning nonprofit helping people to donate and volunteer with top-performing, vetted organizations all over the world. Unique to UniversalGiving, 100% of all donations go directly to the cause.

Pamela is a winner of the Jefferson Award (the Nobel Prize in Community Service) and has been invited three times to the White House. Pamela was a finalist for Ernst and Young’s Entrepreneur of the Year Award and is an Expert Blogger for Fast Company and CSRWire. She is a philanthropy expert for the new TV show, Billions Rising.

Pamela is also an accomplished actress, improviser, dancer, and singer with over 100 performances in San Francisco, New York, and Los Angeles. She is trained by The Groundlings, a graduate of Upright Citizens Brigade, at advanced level Second City Los Angeles, and a BATS improv player. Pamela donates a portion of every show’s proceeds to UniversalGiving.