After reading on Tina's blog about the Beads of Courage program, I felt inspired to send them some beads, too.
Click the link above (and download this pdf) for specific information-- but in a nutshell, they distribute hand-made beads to children with serious illnesses (and their families). Each bead marks a step on the child's journey through treatment.
While I was still on my spiral bead kick, I made up a handful of larger-holed beads. (See the pdf; they need beads with at least 1/16-inch holes, preferably 3/32-inch holes. I found that that's larger than what I usually make in my beads.)
I also went through my stash of previously-made beads to find some with larger stringing holes. Now I just need to pack them up and get them in the mail.
Once I get over that little twinge of "are they good enough?"-- or maybe it's more "are they what the program wants?"-- it's a nice feeling, doing something kind for someone else. (And I figure that even if they can't use them in their program, they can still give them to a children's hospital for use in arts and crafts.)
I like this program because it's so easy. Bottles of Hope (another very worthy cause) is a bit intimidating to me. I haven't covered much with clay, before (and there's also the issue of where to get the bottles and how to distribute them, etc.)-- but I have plenty of experience making beads. All you need is some clay, postage, and the address.
If you have the means to do so, I hope you'll consider sending along a batch of your own beads. It truly does give you a wonderful feeling to make something for someone in a simple gesture of caring.