About 20 years ago I moved to the metropolitan area of Washington, D.C. Having much more time than I do now, I was eager to find a good volunteer opportunity. My search ended when I learned about Habitat for Humanity. I signed up right away to volunteer with DC Habitat for Humanity as a family partner to Vicky, a single mom who has inspired many other single women to take that journey into homeownership. The experience changed the way I felt about charitable giving. It taught me that in addition to financial support, people need advocates from the community to “roll up their sleeves” and help make things happen. Amazing things happen when like-minded people come together and stay committed to great missions. You can read more about my experience in building homes with Habitat for Humanity by visiting Jerry’s Story.
I’ve often made donations each year to the same organizations (St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, Calvary Women’s Services, Whitman-Walker Health, and others) as much as I could afford, but I’ve always wanted to give more. Since 2008, I have supported the education of an orphaned child named Isaac who lives abroad. My donations cover his school fees, books, school uniform, and daily meals (to learn more about the organization visit the Nyaka School). I have been very pleased to watch Isaac grow up and support positive changes in his life. Each year, I still feel like my support is not enough. Many times I have thought to myself, what if I could sponsor all 600+ orphaned children in my kid’s village? This would be a dream for me, and my dream is only deferred
by money. Often times giving more requires earning more. Even with higher wages, life will bring more financial responsibilities which limit many households from donating more to support good work by nonprofits in their local community.
The reason why I created this company was to eliminate the financial barriers that we all face when trying to do more and give more to those less fortunate. You may have experienced that “breaking point” where your donations to charity become the same or less over time because household expenses go up, you have aging parents to care for, and perhaps children in college. We can change that scenario. With technology, more businesses have found creative ways to incorporate benevolence into their business practices. It’s now possible to have your everyday purchases support your favorite charities. It is being done in retail, restaurants, and now the travel industry. The worldwide travel industry revenue is one of the best sources to generate a steady stream of funds that can be donated to charity. With the creation of Vacation Grace, I now see that my dream (and yours) will become a reality!
So how does it work? We establish partnerships with nonprofit organizations that want to be featured on our travel reservation website. This creates visibility and support for the organization. When customers choose to book online, they have the ability to help someone each time they travel. We donate at least 10% of our net profit revenue to the nonprofit chosen by customers from the “Support A Charity” menu option on our booking website. We do not charge the nonprofits a fee and we do not charge the customer more for products or services when booking travel in this way.
Jerry Ellis, Jr.
If you are interested in learning more, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org. You may suggest a nonprofit that we should support or partner with us.