By Patricia Sellers
September 12, 2008

We’ve been talking quite a bit about philanthropy here on Postcards. I like that. I hope you do too. Last week, I published Jennifer Buffett’s Guest Post and told you about Melinda Gates. Here’s another not-for-profit pioneer whose efforts derive from personal passion: Silda Wall Spitzer.

A dozen years ago, Spitzer couldn’t find many ways for her three young daughters to perform community service. Now her daughters are on the way to adulthood — the oldest just began college. Meantime she built Children for Children, which offers young people from preschool through high school hands-on service opportunities. Her big idea is to teach kids the value of volunteering and giving.

I’ve spent some time with Spitzer since her husband, Eliot, resigned as New York State governor last March. It’s been a rough run, but she’s remained steadfast to her cause. And she’s stepping out here to talk about it. Children for Children really is an impressive organization. Its initiatives reached more than 52,000 young people last year. It was recently named one of Charity Navigator’s Top 10 Charities Worth Watching and awarded four stars, the highest rating.

Her message is timely too. Citizen service happens to be one of the few issues that the Presidential candidates are uniting on. This week, John McCain and Barack Obama spoke at the ServiceNation Summit Presidential Forum in New York City. It’s a great event, supported by corporations like Target

, Home Dept

, Goldman Sachs

and Bank of America

as well as Fortune‘s sister publication, Time. Spitzer is involved as a member of the ServiceNation Leadership Council. You can read her Guest Post here.

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