Correct us if we’re wrong, but sometimes knowing how to help your fellow citizen can feel downright overwhelming. How do you even know where to begin? What causes should you support? How do you find the extra time? Fortunately for us we’ve been able to interview some of the most inspiring and philanthropic women out there to find out how they’re working to make the world a better place. From learning about how Rachelle Hruska Macpherson turned her postpartum anxiety into a thriving fashion line to Lauren Wasser’s non-stop mission to educate the world on Toxic Shock Syndrome to Charlotte Mckinney’s work with Best Buddies, you can trust us when we say a) it’s impossible not to be moved by these stories b) you’re going to want to bookmark this feature for all the inspiration you’ll ever need to go out and change the world.
1. Rachelle Hruska Macpherson
Talk about making lemonade out of lemons. The wildly popular Lingua Franca clothing line started as a hobby to help Rachelle Hruska Macpherson deal with her postpartum anxiety.
Since making money was never the point or goal, when we realized we were growing into an actual company, we decided from the start that giving back should be built into everything we do. So far, we’ve raised over $500,000 for various organizations, ranging from saving the environment to women’s rights and education.” What’s more, when they opened their brick-and-mortar store in the fall Hruska Macpherson decided to up the giving anti by highlighting one charity each month. “We donate 10% of all in-store sales to that charity. Last month we sent over $10k to Voto Latino to go directly to the legal fees for DACA recipients. This month, we are sending to the Alliance for Quality Education. Stitching meaningful words that resonate with specific causes and also give back in a concrete way to these causes has made me personally feel less helpless and hopeless during these uncertain times.”
2. Brooke Danielson
Editor, athlete and absolute beauty on the inside and out, Brooke Danielson found her cause while preparing for her first marathon.
“I was training for my first TCS NYC Marathon one summer when I noticed a group in the park with neon yellow shirts that read “Achilles.” What’s more, I noticed that all of these athletes had guides. From that moment on, every Saturday in the park I’d look out for them before I finally decided to investigate what this group actually was. Once I read their mission statement, I immediately emailed the organization to volunteer. They got back to me right away, and I have been guiding ever since. What that means is that I have the pleasure of guiding disabled athletes once or twice a week, ensuring their safety on the road and help them complete workouts without injury. I am “able bodied” therefore I can help an athlete that is disabled in some way. I have guided 5k races all the way up to full marathons. Achilles is a place where disabled athletes can thrive in sport. Through running and walking, the lives of these athletes can be vastly improved for the better. Every time I see an Achilles runner cross the finish line I get chills. It’s a reminder of what the human mind and body are capable of. I have an intense desire to make a difference in the world not only in sport but also in health. It’s vital for humans to give back to each other and support our communities, on a micro level and macro level. My life would not be the same without Achilles and my life would not be the same without the ability to give back and help out.”
3. Lauren Wasser
After Toxic Shock Syndrome nearly killed Lauren Wasser, the model has devoted herself to making sure the tampon industry is more transparent with their warning labels.
“I lost both of my legs to Toxic Shock Syndrome, so I am working tirelessly to help bring this disease to the public’s attention. Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney, myself, + our teams are putting together a central data system to organize the stories and those affected by Toxic Shock Syndrome. Women deserve to know about the products that are going into their bodies, especially in the most vulnerable part of their bodies. It is my mission to help develop research and find out what goes into these products. I also want a place for all of those already affected (directly affected or have someone they love who has been affected) to have a centralized community to share their stories, provide feedback and realize that they are not alone. We are missing this information and we deserve to know the truth. The girls and families who contact me almost every day with similar stories to mine are rally the motivation behind this work. I want to share these stories so women know the truth, and so they know about the risks.”
4. Amanda Chantal Bacon
Moon Juice founder, world-traveling chef, and sustainable lifestyle leader, Amanda Chantal Bacon, wants the world to know that soil is the key to help save the world from global warming.
“Kiss the Ground aims to solve the greatest challenge of our time — climate change. The science and technology exists, now it’s up to all of us to bring our hearts, our will, and our action. Kiss The Ground works on media, the education and expansion of their garden to work with homeless youth. They’re now turning their focus on how to support farmers to build healthy soil everywhere.”
5. Alison Roman
Roman is cooking up more than just viral recipes in her kitchen. The bestselling cookbook author is also passionate about gun control and advocating for sexual healthcare.
“Right now, Everytown for Gun Control has unfortunately become somewhat of a priority for me in terms of charitable donations because it feels like a small thing we can do in an otherwise helpless feeling situation. Planned Parenthood continues to be important to me, because I feel like they provide invaluable service to young women who need it most.”
6. Danika Brysha
Model and motivational speaker Danika Brysha has managed to transform her personal pain into an opportunity to help shed light on eating disorders.
“National Eating Disorders Association is something so close to my heart. I spent the majority of my life fighting with food. My innocent decision to start dieting at age 14 turned into an obsession and resulted in me thinking my worth was relative to how much I weighed. Dieting turned into bulimia which turned into drug and alcohol abuse and a binge eating disorder. When I was going through it, I felt so alone. Once I started telling my story and connecting with others who shared the same struggles, life became so much easier. I eventually got involved with Overeaters Anonymous which completely changed my life, and I want to assure that both these programs receive the support they need to continue helping those who struggle through this painful and often shameful addiction.”
7. Charlotte Mckinney
Yes Charlotte Mckinney is a model — a model citizen. We could all take a lesson from Mckinney’s inspiring work with Best Buddies.
“Best Buddies is an incredible organization I’ve been working with closely since high school. My main goal working with the team and the ‘best buddies’ is to continue to build strong connections with the buddies — I’ve made so many amazing friendships over the years, the buddies always have a warm place in my heart. Their goal is to help end the social, physical and economic isolation of 200 million people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD). I always love supporting their work in any way I can, whether it’s spreading the word, attending their events, or even hosting events myself when I can. The last event we collaborated on was really cute — we partnered with Blushington in LA, and hosted a glam day where the best buddies came in and had their makeup and nails done by professionals. I will always continually aim to spread the word about the amazing work Best Buddies does, it’s really fulfilling for me. If you want to find out more about Best Buddies and how you can support check out their site.”