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Are you looking for giving ideas this holiday season that support your passion for and lifelong commitment to healthcare and senior living design?

Then consider donating to a nonprofit that is helping to improve the quality of healthcare for patients and staff as well as the lives of seniors through the design of the physical environment.

The research, education, and advocacy efforts of seven nonprofits in the U.S. are stimulating new thinking and innovative ideas that are improving the health, safety, and well-being of patients, residents, family, and staff in healthcare facilities and senior living communities all over the world.

You can either donate to and/or support them through membership or partnership. Here they are, listed in alphabetical order:

1. CADRE (Center for Advanced Design Research and Evaluation)

CADRE initiates, coordinates, and shares collaborative research on the societal impact of the built environment on health and wellbeing. Membership: No. Key programs/resources: free reports and tools. Executive Director: Upali Nanda. Learn more or donate>>>

Note: Although CADRE was founded by HKS and receives financial and in-kind support from the firm, they share their research with all and are open to collaboration with other design firms, product manufacturers, academic institutions, and organizations.

2. The Caritas Project

This small nonprofit focuses on teaching people about the "Generative Space" concept -- the core of which is respect for human dignity. Membership:  No. Key programs/resources:  Generative Space Award, The Health Design Leadership Program, and small group online events. President/Founder:  Wayne Ruga. Learn more or donate>>>

3. The Center for Health Design

Made up of a diverse community of design professionals, healthcare professionals, researchers, product manufacturers, educators, and students primarily in North America, CHD is dedicated to improving the quality of healthcare through the design of the physical environment. Membership:  Yes.  Key programs/resources:  EDAC certification, Research Coalition, Environment Networks, Environmental Standards Council, educational programs, research, toolboxes, and awards. President/CEO:  Debra Levin. Learn more or donate>>>

4. Facility Guidelines Institute

FGI and its dedicated volunteers develop guidelines for the planning, design, and construction of hospitals, outpatient facilities, and residential health/care/support facilities in the U.S. Membership:  No. Key programs/resources: Health Guidelines Revision Committee, research, awards, webinars, and publications. CEO: Heather Livingston. Learn more>>>

Note:  FGI doesn't have an online donation form, but you can contact them if you wish to financially support their work.

5. Health Care Without Harm

A global organization, HCWH's purpose is to transform healthcare worldwide so that hospitals and health systems reduce their environmental footprint, become community anchors for sustainability, and leaders in the global movement for environmental health and justice. Membership: Organizations only. Key programs/resources (U.S. and Canada) Restorative Health Care, Health Food in Health Care, Toxic Materials, Safer Chemicals, Green Building and Energy, Environmentally Preferable Purchasing, Waste Management, and Climate and Health. President/Co-Founder:  Gary Cohen. Learn more or donate>>>

6. Nursing Institute for Healthcare Design

NIHD's purpose is to educate and inspire nurse leaders about their role in healthcare design and construction. Membership:  Yes. Key programs/resources:  educational programs and publications. Executive Director:  Angela Boyle. Learn more or donate>>>

7. Society for the Advancement of Gerontological Environments

SAGE is collaboration of like-minded individuals with the common goal of improving physical environments for older adults. Membership:  Yes. Key programs/resources:  Post-Occupancy Evaluation Program, Environments for Aging Design Showcase, Renovation/Remodel Competition, David A. Green Memorial Award, and educational programs. Director of Operations:  Lori Bridgeman. Learn more or donate>>>

Due Diligence

Before you give money to any nonprofit, you might also want to do a little investigating into how they spend their funds.

All U.S. nonprofit corporations must submit their financial statements, which include the salaries of directors, officers, and key employees to the IRS on Form 990. The Economic Research Institute and Pro Publica have free search tools to access the financial information on nonprofit's 990 forms.

You'll find that most nonprofits spend a lot of money on salaries, benefits, and other extras for staff. That's because you can't do good work without good staff.

But one thing to consider is how much they are paying their top executives relative to their total revenue. According to philanthropy data provider Candid, the median salary for nonprofit execs with budgets of $2.5 million to $5 million is $129,000.

This holiday season, give a little.  It will make you feel good.

P.S. Please do me a favor -- if you liked this post and like this blog, please share it with others by sending them the link or posting it on your Twitter, LinkedIn, or Facebook. Also, don't forget to subscribe, so you'll get emails when new content is posted. Thanks!

Photo by Joshua Woroniecki.

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Sara Marberry_013-Retouched-New copy

What's my story? I'm a healthcare and senior living design knowledge expert who writes and speaks frequently about trends and issues affecting these two industries. I'm also a strategic marketing consultant and content creator, working with companies and organizations who want to improve the quality of healthcare and senior living through the design of the physical environment. You can reach me at sara@saramarberry.com.

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