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6 Books to Read About Giving Back

6 Books to Read About Giving Back

Dictionary.com defines altruism as “the principle or practice of unselfish concern for or devotion to the welfare of others.” If you strive to live an altruistic life, then you dedicate significant time, energy or support to those around you, either by donating with an organization you care about, volunteering with others or even showing your support for those in your community.

Sometimes, an altruistic life can be challenging. It can sometimes feel overwhelming, unsatisfying or even lonely. At times like these it’s important to know that you’re not in it alone. There are others out there in the world who want to make a difference, too. They even write books about it. We compiled a list of six of the greatest books to read about giving back. These books inspire the altruistic lifestyle and show anyone can make an impact on the world. Let’s explore each of them more in depth.

1. Abundance: The Future is Better Than You Think, Peter H. Diamandis & Steven Kotler
Published in 2012, this New York Times bestseller offers practical solutions to address some of the world’s most pressing concerns, such as overpopulation, food, water, energy, education, healthcare and freedom. The authors offer a future where nine billion people have access to all of Earth’s resources and everything else necessary for a first world standard of living.

2. Give Smart: Philanthropy That Gets Results, Thomas J. Tierney & Joel L. Fleishman
In this 2011 book, authors co-founder of The Bridgespan Group Thomas J. Tierney, and Duke professor Joel L. Fleishman, pool together their hands-on nonprofit knowledge to present a definitive guide to engaged philanthropy for donors.

3. Kisses from Katie: A Story of Relentless Love and Redemption, Katie Davis
Originally published in 2009, Katie Davis’s autobiography shares her story of courage and love. At just 18-years-old, Davis left her hometown, friends, family and boyfriend of Nashville, Tennessee, to move to Uganda, adopt 13 children and establish a ministry. If you want to read a personal impact story of altruism, this is the book for you.

4. A Path Appears: Transforming Lives, Creating Opportunity, Nicholas Kristof & Sheryl WuDunn
From the same husband and wife team who brought to life the #1 New York Times bestseller Half the Sky comes their next best book in 2014. This book shares a deep examination of people who are making the world a better place, along with the myriad of ways we can support them. With research and reporting, the writers share on the art and science of giving.

5. Systems Thinking for Social Change: A Practical Guide to Solving Complex Problems, Avoiding Unintended Consequences, and Achieving Lasting Results, David Peter Stroh
David Peter Stroh’s 2015 book helps readers contribute more effectively to society by teaching them what systems thinking is and why it is important in their work. It also provides concrete guidance on how to incorporate systems thinking into problem solving, decision making and strategic planning. For donors and nonprofit leaders, this is the book to start with.

6. 40 Chances: Finding Hope in a Hungry World, Howard Graham Buffett
What would you do if someone granted you $3 billion to accomplish something great in the world? In 2006, legendary investor Warren Buffett posed this question to his son Howard Graham Buffett. So, Howard set out to help the most vulnerable on the planet—nearly a billion people who lack food security. He gave himself a deadline of 40 years to put the resources to work on the challenge. In this 2013 manifesto, Howard shares his journey and an informative guidebook for how to ignite real changes in the world.

Altruism might feel like a lonely journey at times, but that could not be further from the truth. If you want to live a more altruistic lifestyle, start by checking out some of these six great books on giving back. Dive in, learn something new and be inspired to truly make an impact on the world.

Our Impact in 2017

January 1-December 31
  • CAPSA is a non-profit domestic violence, sexual abuse, and rape recovery center serving Cache County and the Bear Lake area.

  • YCC Family Crisis Center is a domestic violence shelter and rape crisis center provide services 24/7 to victims and their children.

  • Utah Legal Services (ULS) is a nonprofit law office incorporated in 1976 committed to making equal justice a reality by providing free legal help in non-criminal cases to low-income Utahns.

  • South Valley Services is a domestic violence service provider in West Jordan, Utah. We provide safe shelter and supportive services to women, men and their children who have been impacted by domestic violence.

  • Today, the YWCA is Utah’s most comprehensive provider of family violence services; our programs include walk-in services and a crisis line, emergency shelter, transitional housing, children’s programs, and a vast array of supportive services.

  • Established in 1990, Seekhaven assists survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault rebuild their lives. Serving Grand County and Southeastern Utah, Seekhaven provides a wide range of essential services including client advocacy, emergency shelter, and transition assistance.

  • Peace House is dedicated to ending family violence and abuse through education, outreach, support services, and safe housing.

  • New Hope Crisis Center has been serving Box Elder County for 30 years. Our mission is to provide all-inclusive, integrated, victim-centered services to stabilize and support individuals, families, and our community.

  • Founded in 1984, The Center for Women and Children in Crisis has been in continuous operation for 33 years. Our mission is to provide a caring, advocating, safe, and educationally based environment for survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault.

  • Our organization advocates for victims of domestic violence, rape and sexual assault, and the homeless. Serving people in Sevier, Piute, Millard, Sanpete and Wayne counties of Utah.

  • The DOVE Center is the only area agency providing safe-shelter, crisis intervention, and prevention for clients who have been victimized by violence in their home – whether by a family member or cohabitant – that also serves victims of rape and sexual assault.

  • Founded in 1922, Legal Aid Society of Salt Lake is a non-profit organization that promotes safety, stability and self-sufficiency for low income families and individuals, as well as victims of domestic violence, through effective, efficient legal advocacy and assistance.

  • Canyon Creek Services provides free and confidential services for survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault in Iron, Beaver and Garfield Counties.

  • Valley Behavioral Health is a nonprofit network of clinics providing treatment for behavioral conditions, addictions, psychiatric conditions, autism and other chronic health conditions. We treat chronic lifelong conditions as well as temporary conditions triggered by traumatic life events. Our programs are tailored to people of all ages and every social, cultural and economic situation.

  • Preserve the heritage. Enhance the wellbeing. Strengthen the future of the People.

  • Our Mission: To bring hope, justice, and healing to victims of domestic violence murder by providing holistic non-profit legal representation in the civil, probate and family courts.

  • At Amethyst Center for Healing we are dedicated to helping individuals, families, and communities recover from trauma and abuse, so that we may all live peaceful, empowered lives.

  • Cycling club dedicated to ending child abuse.

© 2018 Utah Domestic Violence Coalition

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