11 Best Charities That Support Widows and Widowers (Complete 2024 List)

11 Best Charities That Support Widows and Widowers (Complete 2024 List)

By
Diana Stancu

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There are approximately 258 million widows and widowers worldwide, with nearly one in ten living in poverty. Modern conflicts, medical crises, and social changes continue to increase widowhood, which, in turn, raises the chances of loneliness, depression, or even early death. Fortunately, charities worldwide are working to alleviate suffering in times of grief and loss. So we had to ask: What are the best charities that support widows and widowers?

The best charities that support widows and widowers are Soaring Spirits International and the National Widowers’ Organization. Other charities, like Wings for Widows and the Modern Widows Club support financial planning and social inclusion for widows and widowers worldwide.

Whether you are a widow or widower seeking a healing community, or have a widowed loved one you’d like to help, or you simply want to alleviate widows’ struggles worldwide, there is a charity for you. Keep reading to learn more about what the best charities that support widows and widowers are all about, how they work, and what would be your best way to make a contribution.

Here’s What All the Best Charities That Support Widows and Widowers Have in Common

The charities on this list were chosen based on their impact, transparency ratings, programs, and achievements.

They operate all over the world, from North America to Asia, and they all share the same goal of assisting widows and widowers in need.

The charities below aid the specific needs of widows and widowers in both developed and developing countries. They run programs for grief processing or financial literacy and stability.

They also encourage vulnerable widows and widowers to advocate for their rights in local communities. Many of the charities conduct in-person and virtual support groups, events, and societies that promote social inclusion, understanding, and mental well-being.

Yet, through these different approaches, they all work to ease the sorrow of losing a loved one. 

These Are the 11 Best Charities That Support Widows and Widowers in 2024

Below are our favorite charities that support widows and widowers (you can click on their link to directly jump to their section in this article):

(At the end of this article we’ll also share our six-step approach on how you can select the best charity to support.)

1

Soaring Spirits International: Connecting Widowed People

Logo for Soaring Spirits International
Finding Hope at Camp Widow®

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Their transparency & ratings:

Soaring Spirits International holds the Silver Seal of Transparency from GuideStar. Charity Navigator also gives them a 53% score for Finance & Accountability.

We believe in the power of hope and the ability of every widowed person to recreate a life of meaning and purpose.”

Soaring Spirits International 

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What they do:

Soaring Spirits International provides transformative services to the widowed community. They have nationwide support groups for widows and widowers, along with their Camp Widow retreat which offers practical and emotional tools to help process grief and loss. They also offer virtual support programs, such as an awareness blog, online meetings that aid the newly widowed, and a private outreach program. Their Widowed Village virtual community allows members to read and share thoughts with other grieving people for support and to build lasting friendships. 

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What they’ve achieved:

Since their founding, Soaring Spirits International has reached over 4 million people and established 70 local support groups across the US. They also helped struggling widows and widowers with 10,000 Newly Widowed Packets and 20,000 Outreach Cards for emotional support. In 2017, they established the first US center that focused on grief and resilience in widowhood. In 2020, they supported and surveyed over 800 widowed people and found higher levels of self-esteem, resilience, and personal growth in those that used the charity’s programs. 

Ways to contribute:

You can make one-time or monthly donations to Soaring Spirits International on their website. You can also volunteer, buy their merchandise, or consider legacy giving.

2

National Widowers’ Organization: You Are Not Alone

Logo for National Widowers’ Organization
Men Moving On

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Their transparency & ratings:

The National Widowers’ Organization holds the Gold Seal of Transparency from GuideStar

Our goal is to bring men together and arm them with as much information about how to get through this debilitating time in their lives, no matter how long it takes.”

National Widowers’ Organization

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What they do:

The National Widowers’ Organization educates the public about the unique needs of men who have lost their life partners. They do this by providing supportive resources for new widowers on how to better navigate their changed lives. Moreover, their Widower to Widower peer support program helps grieving spouses connect with a network of members to better overcome their struggles. They also offer online communities for widowers and dating advice. In addition, their Men’s Grief Network project connects those mourning a loved one’s death while advocating for research into men’s needs while grieving.

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What they’ve achieved:

Since their founding, the National Widowers’ Organization has stayed committed to guiding men on their bereavement journey. For example, they have created free webinar workshops that help widowers share their experiences while connecting them with grief and loss educators. Furthermore, they have served grieving spouses through over 40 blog posts to emotionally improve their newly single life. They have also connected widowers with 43 online groups, social gatherings, and dating communities

Ways to contribute:

You can donate to the National Widowers’ Organization on their website. You can also get involved by volunteering or subscribing to their newsletter

3

Wings for Widows: Life Changes. We Change Lives.

Logo for Wings for Widows
Executive Director message to widows and widowers

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Their transparency & ratings:

Charity Navigator gives Wings for Widows a 100% score for Leadership & Adaptability and Culture & Community. The charity also holds the Platinum Seal of Transparency from GuideStar.

Our goal is to help the newly widowed embrace their financial future with confidence and have access to financial literacy education.

Wings for Widows

⚒️

What they do:

Wings for Widows assists the newly widowed with a range of programs and bereavement resources that assist in practical matters to ensure they can take the proper time to process grief. For example, their free virtual coaching “The New Widow’s Guide to Financial Wellness” teaches financial literacy for smart investments and expenditures after losing a spouse. Furthermore, their coaches are licensed and experienced financial advisors that assess future learners with a confidential Financial Wellness Check and support them along their financial empowerment journey.

🚀

What they’ve achieved:

Since their founding, Wings for Widows has helped 780 clients nationwide and coached 272 newly widowed people through more than 150 coaching hours. Moreover, they collaborated with 102 coaches across 2,700 volunteering hours. They have also trained 45 financial planners who now hold the CFP certification, which is considered the golden standard of financial planning. Their awareness courses, such as “Grief Explorations” and “Enrichment Classes” have helped hundreds of widows and widowers to recover from their loss and join a loving community.

Ways to contribute:

You can donate to Wings for Widows through their website. In addition, you can join as a volunteer or refer a widowed loved one for financial help.

4

Widowed and Young: Helping to Navigate Life After Loss

Logo for Widowed and Young
WAY Widowed and Young Film 2018

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Their transparency & ratings:

According to their financial report, Widowed and Young spent 52% of their income on charitable activities and 48% on administrative costs. 

It’s a club that nobody wants to join, but we are so glad that our members find us. We are a place for people who have experienced an untimely loss, to understand their grief and be able to say: ‘I know’.

Widowed and Young

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What they do:

Widowed and Young shares comprehensive bereavement resources for the newly widowed, from navigating the first few weeks to long-term social reintegration. Furthermore, they run a membership network that offers peer-to-peer support groups from volunteers who have suffered bereavement at a young age and can empathize with the members. They also offer opportunities for social events, like picnics and community meals as well as trips and organized holidays. In addition, their 24/7 telephone helpline aids the newly widowed with counseling, as well as financial and legal advice. 

🚀

What they’ve achieved:

Since their founding, Widowed and Young has continued to support grieving spouses across the UK. For example, in 2022, they supported 4,650 young widowed people with the help of 166 volunteers. In the same year, their members organized more than 1,160 social events with almost 5,400 attendees, while over 400 members used their telephone helpline. Furthermore, they raised over $130,000 to better meet their members’ needs and gifted nearly 200 widows an annual membership into their network through their Memorial Fund

Ways to contribute:

You can donate to Widowed and Young on their website. You can also contribute by volunteering or buying their merchandise

5

Modern Widows Club: No Widow Left Behind

Logo for Modern Widows Club
Modern Widows Club Welcome

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Their transparency & ratings:

Charity Navigator gives the Modern Widows Club a 100% score for Leadership & Adaptability and a 96% score for Culture & Community. They also hold the Platinum Seal of Transparency from GuideStar.

We serve to empower widows to lean into life, build resilience and make a positive difference in society.

Modern Widows Club

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What they do:

The Modern Widows Club helps widows transform their grief into a purposeful future. They do this through their pioneering work in widowhood research and solutions through their Widow Empowerment Quiz, to better understand the demographics and their needs. They also run support groups for widows and widowers to help them heal, increase their confidence and leadership skills, and advocate for their rights nationwide. In addition, the charity supports widows internationally and educates them to raise awareness of their struggles inside local communities.

🚀

What they’ve achieved:

To date, the Modern Widows Club has built over 50 homes for widows through their international outreach program. In 2021, they established the Pillars of Healthy Widowhood to aid new widows that, based on their research, struggle with health breakdowns in reaction to loss. In the same year, they held more than 250 community events and provided over 400 support meetings for over 16,000 widows worldwide. They also distributed over $70,000 in grants to American widows who struggled financially

Ways to contribute:

You can donate to the Modern Widows Club directly on their website. You can also get involved by volunteering, buying their merchandise, or through corporate giving.

6

Hope for Widows Foundation: We Relate. We Understand. We Listen. We Care.

Logo for Hope For Widows
Hope for Widows Foundation Story Telling Video

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Their transparency & ratings:

Charity Navigator gives the Hope for Widows Foundation a 100% score for culture and community. GuideStar gives them the Gold Seal of Transparency.

We assist women, married or unmarried, who have lost their partner and are looking to find hope and light in their darkness.”

Hope for Widows Foundation

⚒️

What they do:

The Hope for Widows Foundation leads community care programs that give emotional assistance and financial help to widows throughout the entire grieving process. They also conduct online support groups where widows nationwide can build a caring community. In addition, their Health and Wellness programs teach healthy nutrition and lifestyle while bringing hope during their healing journey. Furthermore, their grief awareness program “Hearts for Hope” runs emotional support meetings for widows to create self-care regimes, learn coping tools, and share their experiences in a safe environment

🚀

What they’ve achieved:

Since their founding, the Hope for Widows Foundation has reached over 10,000 widows through their therapeutic and wellness groups. For example, from 2016 to 2019, their online support group gained 6,122 members who received vital peer to peer support in their grieving journeys. In 2019, the charity also established the Restoring Hope & Peace Grant which supported the financial challenges of widows and aided over $6,000 in awards. 

Ways to contribute:

You can donate to the Hope for Widows Foundation directly through their website. You can also donate monthly and become a Hope Hero. In addition, you can shop their Charity List on Amazon or join their supportive online community

7

Global Fund for Widows: Empowering Widows Around the World

Logo for Global Fund for Widows
Global Fund for Widows + Dining for Women - Brookbank Economic Empowerment Project - Kenya

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Their transparency & ratings:

The Global Fund for Widows has a Platinum Seal of Transparency from GuideStar.

We are dedicated to empowering widows and female heads of households to overcome poverty, achieve financial stability, self-sufficiency, and accountability across the developing world.

The Global Fund for Widows

⚒️

What they do:

The Global Fund for Widows works to protect widows’ rights against harmful practices like disinheritance and discrimination. Through their Widows’ Savings and Loan Association program (WISALA), they offer widows the opportunity to take out a loan from small savings and start their own business with the charity’s help. Through their local partners, they also fund projects in India and five African countries, to empower widows with personal income, ownership, and legal protection. In addition, they advocate with the UN to implement international laws that enhance widows’ rights worldwide. 

🚀

What they’ve achieved:

Since their founding, the Global Fund for Widows has empowered nearly 20,000 widows and 53,000 of their children. They have also built 91 micro-banks through the WISALA program and served over 5,6 million meals to widows in need. In addition, they supported over 15,000 widows in Egypt into financial literacy. In 2020, they established 400 poultry farms for widows in Kenya, and 240 farms in Cameroon. In the same year, they helped 400 widows in Nigeria plant 1,500 palm trees and start a palm oil press. They also created the only global alliance that works to secure widows’ rights.

Ways to contribute:

You can donate to the Global Fund for Widows through their website. You can also get involved by becoming a corporate partner or joining their events.

8

The Widows Empowerment Trust: Empathy And Compassion Bring Us Together

Logo for The Widows Empowerment Trust
The widows empowerment trust

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Their transparency & ratings:

According to their financial report, the Widows Empowerment Trust spent 53,1% of their total income on program fees, 33,8% on raising funds and legacies, and 11,6% on their Africa-Building initiatives and projects. 

We are striving to promote social inclusion in the lives of widows, widowers, and anyone that has experienced bereavement.

The Widows Empowerment Trust

⚒️

What they do:

The Widows Empowerment Trust supports widows’ social needs in times of grief. They do this through their well-being centers that provide social interactions and community support for widows. They also offer medical aid and gifts to widows struggling with health issues and aid the financial challenges that the newly widowed face. Their volunteers run befriending services and make home visits, where they offer practical and emotional support. In addition, the charity assists widows that struggle with dementia, with activities that promote social inclusion. 

🚀

What they’ve achieved:

Since their founding, The Widows Empowerment Trust has remained committed to helping widows in need of social support. For example, in 2021, their 156 volunteers ran 180 home visits and 70 shopping services for widows. They also engaged them with 84 befriending calls. In the same year, they reached 171 widows with online events for celebrations like Mother’s Day or International Women’s Day, where they also offered 97 gifts and prizes. In addition, they entertained 100 widows with 48 sessions of online Bingo and 50 “Arts and Crafts” projects.

Ways to contribute:

You can donate to the Widows Empowerment Trust directly on their website. You can also get involved by volunteering or applying for a job. Additionally, you can join their Facebook community for widows

9

HEART for Widows: Self-Empowerment Programs for Widows

Logo for HEART for Widows
HEART for Widows presentation

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Their transparency & ratings:

HEART for Widows holds the Platinum Seal of Transparency from GuideStar.

In spite of their challenges, widows themselves are agents of change. We offer them aid to champion their cause, as progress cannot be forthcoming unless drastic steps are taken.”

HEART for Widows

⚒️

What they do:

HEART for Widows empowers women through the challenges of widowhood. They do this by conducting awareness programs of “Hope, restoration, better life, and self-reliance” in Asian and African countries. They also run in-person support groups for widows and help them with home building and other services, especially after humanitarian crises. In addition, they operate self-empowerment programs and training centers where widows learn to make commercial goods and maintain financial stability. These activities include farming, knitting, and crafting traditional products which they sell at local markets.

🚀

What they’ve achieved:

Today, HEART for Widows has a network of 8 offices worldwide that support widows in 12 developing countries across Asia and Africa. For example, in 2021, 70 of their employees and volunteers served around 300 widows each month through empowerment programs. In the same year, they opened a shop in Nigeria run entirely by local widows to sell organic farming products and improve their own financial stability.

Ways to contribute:

You can contribute to HEART for Widows by donating through their website. In addition, you can support them by following their Facebook and Instagram accounts.

10

Both Hands: One for the Widow, One for the Orphan

Logo for Both Hands 
Both Hands Promo 2015

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Their transparency & ratings:

Both Hands has a 100% score for Finance & Accountability from Charity Navigator. They are also ECFA accredited, adhering to their Seven Standards of Responsible Stewardship.

Our mission is to help Christian adoptive families fund their adoptions by coordinating service projects fixing up a widow’s home.”

Both Hands

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What they do:

Both Hands conducts separate projects for adoption causes and widows nationwide. They begin by gathering a team of around ten family members and friends to host a specific support project. Afterward, they connect them with a widow in their community that needs help with home building or heavy work around the house. The family-team raises funds to serve both the widow and their own adoption. The charity also organizes Project Days, where the adoptive family, friends, and volunteers refurbish or build the widow’s house from scratch.

🚀

What they’ve achieved:

Since their founding, Both Hands has helped over 1,000 families through 1,171 projects across 45 states. They have served 1,300 widows through Project Days and have brought over 1,400 orphans to a loving adoptive family. In total, they have raised $15,7 million in projects for widows and orphan care.

Ways to contribute:

You can donate to Both Hands directly on their website. You can also donate directly to specific adoption projects. In addition, you can buy the charity’s merchandise.

Christian Aid Ministries: Ministering Needs Worldwide

Logo for Christian Aid Ministries
Christian Aid Ministries Overview

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Their transparency & ratings:

Christian Aid Ministries has a 97% score for Finance & Accountability from Charity Navigator. They are also ECFA accredited, adhering to their Seven Standards of Responsible Stewardship.

Our purpose in providing aid is to help and encourage God’s people and bring the Gospel to a lost, dying world.”

Christian Aid Ministries

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What they do:

Christian Aid Ministries runs programs to aid vulnerable widows in developing countries. For example, they bring food parcels to widows that are disinherited or struggling financially. Their Widow Care Fund works to alleviate more complex needs, like shelter or home building and crisis aid. They also provide self-development services and resources that will bring widowers and abandoned wives financial independence, like sewing machines or animals for farming.

🚀

What they’ve achieved:

Since their founding, Christian Aid Ministries has remained committed to helping widowed and abandoned people. For example, in 2021, they provided over 21,800 food parcels to widows and widowers from over 10 countries worldwide. In the same year, they invested over $1 million in food, medicine, and immediate aid for widows, and funded over $550,000 for their Widows Care Fund.

Ways to contribute:

You can donate to Christian Aid Ministries on their website. You can also donate directly to a widow in need, or sponsor their Widows Care Fund.

How Can You Select the Best Charities to Support?

The charities on the list are, we deem, the best charities that support widows and widowers. However, you may have a particular charity you want to support. Let’s look at what you can do to ensure your contribution has the most significant impact.

  • Check out the charity website. Charities that are worthy of your donations are transparent in their mission and their figures. Familiarise yourself with their history, mission, and values. Their website usually is the best place to start.
  • Identify the charity’s mission. Without a goal, the charity is likely to fail. If the charity’s mission isn’t clear, it’s probably worth looking for a charity that does have a clear mission. 
  • Check if the charity has measurable goals. An effective charity has clear goals. You want to know your donation will help the charity reach its goals. But if it doesn’t have targets, it’s likely to fail or squander your gift. The charity should be able to account for its spending and supply evidence of the work they do.
  • Assess the successes or goals the charity has achieved. You wouldn’t invest in a business if it kept missing its targets. In the same way, charities are like this too. If no one is assessing a charity’s progress in reaching its targets, the chances are they’re not making a substantial positive change.
  • Check the charity’s financials and stats. Trustworthy organizations will publish financial statements and reports each year. Some might be exempt from having to do so, but they should be able to provide them to public members who are interested in donating.
  • Locate sources who work with or benefit from the charity. Word of mouth and first-hand experience of a charity’s work lets you know the charity’s quality. If you’re able to do so, check out the charity for yourself or speak to someone familiar with it. This way, your donation will go to the right place. 

How Can You Best Support These Charities?

After you’ve made your decision, it’s time for you to decide on how you’d like to help the charities you’ve chosen. Check how you can help – each charity runs specific programs that have unique aims. Find out what the aim of such programs is and whether they are right for you. 

Here are a few ways you can help your chosen charity:

  • Donate money. You can find donation pages on the website of most charities. Your donation can be a one-time payment, or you can set it to be deducted regularly at different intervals. You can mostly pay via credit card, but some charities also take PayPal or Bitcoin payments.
  • Buy their official merchandise. The charities can also raise money by selling merchandise. So, you can support them by buying the mugs, shirts, caps, pens, pencils, and any other such items they may be selling. Ideally, you should buy as much as you can to share and spread the word about the charity’s activities.
  • Engage in volunteer work. As you’ve seen from our descriptions above, some charities engage in a lot of local and grassroots programs. You can help by taking on and organizing the program in your local area.
  • Help their fundraising efforts. You can spread the word about the charity in your workplace, school, church, etc., and hold creative fundraising drives on social media or offline within your small circles.
  • Share their stories. Most charities have compelling stories that you can share with your audience to attract more people to the cause.

Final Thoughts

Now it is up to you to select the charity that resonates most with you. And whichever charity you end up choosing and contributing to, we are sure that they will immensely appreciate your support. Hopefully, the information within this article has made this selection process a bit easier for you to support charities dedicated to widows and widowers – based on the causes that matter most to you.

Stay impactful,

Illustration of a signature for Diana

PS: Finally, I want to leave you with a thought-provoking TED talk from Dan Pallotta, a leading philanthropic activist and fundraiser, about what is wrong with the way we think about charities – and what we can do about it:

The way we think about charity is dead wrong | Dan Pallotta

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