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I’m not sure if I want to go back to college but, after staying at the Graduate Ann Arbor, I definitely want to stay in these college town hotels which I wrote about for USA Today 10Best!

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what five years old looks like in south sudan

Chianayl - South Sudan

As the United States celebrates its birthday today, South Sudan gets ready to celebrate its birthday later this week.

The youngest country in the world, South Sudan turns five on July 9. Although the country was founded during a time of peace, children born that year only have memories of violence.

Since the war broke out in 2013, 2.3 million South Sudanese have been forced to flee their homes. That’s 1/5 of the country. 5.1 million people — nearly half the country — are in need of urgent humanitarian assistance.

Behind these horrifying statistics, though, are real people. Real children who you need to meet. [Read more…]

care’s special delivery project #withsyria

Helga CARE package

photo/Carey Wagner for CARE

Michael and I have supported CARE for many years because it’s a great humanitarian organization. Its mission is to fight global poverty,  and we love that it focuses on working alongside poor women, understanding that if you equip women with the proper resources, they can lift whole communities out of poverty.

Now, CARE is launching a powerful Special Delivery project, and it’s something we feel strongly about for personal reasons. [Read more…]

care knows how, dollars to doughnuts

Biti Rose

This post is sponsored by CARE. All opinions are, as 
always, 100% mine. Please click on the sponsored links
because this is an amazing organization. Photo credit:
Brian Feagans/CARE

When I read that CARE was helping to beat poverty with doughnuts, I knew I had to write about this empowering and life-changing campaign. After all, these are subjects dear to my heart and I am someone who believes doughnuts are the answer to a surprising number of problems.

Although pretty much everyone has heard of CARE, you may not be aware of some of the creative ways the humanitarian organization is improving the lives of people in some of the poorest communities in the world.

So let me tell you about the doughnuts. [Read more…]

Join Susan In Helping With The Somalia Crisis

Famine in Somalia
Photo by AP/Rebecca Blackwell

I am horrified about the humanitarian catastrophe that is getting worse by the minute in southern Somalia. After watching an MSNBC interview with Somali-born supermodel, Iman, (see interview below) I knew that I had to do something. Iman explained what is happening in that region in a clear and concise way, sharing her reasons for supporting SaveTheChildren.org. At that moment I realized the best way for me to help was to make a donation. Here are some of the startling statistics about this crisis:

1.  For months, aid agencies have warned about the devastating drought in the Horn of Africa and its potential for causing famine.

2. To be declared a famine, which the United Nations did last week, 2 out of 10,000 people have to die daily — which MEANS THAT 1,500 PEOPLE ARE DYING DAILY.

3.  By waiting for an official declaration of “famine,” the international community ends up responding too late, resulting in more deaths.

4.  There are more than 10 million people — with 1 million of them children — at risk on a daily basis.

5.  This is being called a “children’s famine” since so many children are dying and more than half of the child population is malnourished.

6.  Some mothers are forced to leave their sickest child by the road to die alone so they can push on to save their stronger children.

7.  During the 1992 famine, 200,000 people died.  This crisis is twice as bad.


These statistics are hard to fathom and it makes my heart sad. As a mother, I cannot imagine having to leave my sick child on the side of the road to die alone for any reason. Women and, especially, children are the most affected by this disaster. As Iman pointed out, these malnourished children will need long term help. A few meals will not solve the problem.

I cannot fly to Somalia to help and I recognize that donating money is the best way to help with this humanitarian crisis. I encourage all of our readers to consider making a monetary donation, no matter how big or small. I chose to donate to Save the Children because, according to Iman, 95 cents of every donated dollar goes directly to actually saving the children, but there are other organizations helping with this disaster as well. Research them before you donate, to make sure the money is going where you want it to go.

Save the Children

United Nations


Doctors Without Borders


Red Cross

International Rescue Committee

Horn of Africa

You can make a difference.