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Giving makes you healthier, literally.

That's the story behind the story of Cami Walker, who, in this profile in The New York Times, describes how giving a gift a day for 29 straight days has made a material difference in her struggle with multiple sclerosis.

"She is more mobile and less dependent on pain medication. The flare-ups that routinely sent her to the emergency room have stopped, and scans show that her disease has stopped progressing," reads the Times article.

Astounding, right? Reading Walker's story, I couldn't help but wonder what would happen if we all just gave a little more. Would the health-care debate be as vitriolic? Would UnitedHealth Group (NYSE: UNH  ) , Aetna (NYSE: AET  ) , and WellPoint (NYSE: WLP  ) find a way to maintain profits and still lower premiums? Would Tenet Healthcare (NYSE: THC  ) and Universal Health Services (NYSE: UHS  ) hospitals have fewer sick walk-ins to treat at their own expense? OK, probably not. But embracing a culture of giving might make our personal worlds better, and little by little, raise the standard of living.

That's the basic principle behind Foolanthropy. Give a little, knowing that even small donations of time, cash, and talent can have a huge impact when multiplied.

We're in our 13th year of the Fool's annual charity campaign, and this time our beneficiary is Thurgood Marshall Academy Public Charter High School in Washington, D.C. Over the next year, Fools will be donating time and talent to teach basic finance to the students there.

We're doing this not because we want to be healthier, but because we believe in financial literacy. We believe in Foolish acts of kindness. And we believe that a more financially literate population is less likely to stumble into fiscal armageddon.

Sound good? Here's how you can help. For every article comment, blog post, blog comment, and discussion board post throughout the campaign, The Motley Fool will donate $0.10 to our adopted school (up to $20,000). So let us know what you think! Use this opportunity to share your thoughts on financial literacy, volunteerism, and what you're doing in your own community.

UnitedHealth and WellPoint are Motley Fool Inside Value picks. UnitedHealth is also Motley Fool Stock Advisor selection. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days.

Fool contributor Tim Beyers didn't own shares in any of the companies mentioned in this article at the time of publication. Check out Tim's portfolio holdings and Foolish writings, or connect with him on Twitter as @milehighfool. The Motley Fool owns shares of UnitedHealth and is also on Twitter as @TheMotleyFool. The Fool's disclosure policy is going to have a field day with the chump who turned down the thermostat.

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Tim Beyers

Tim Beyers first began writing for the Fool in 2003. Today, he's an analyst for Motley Fool Rule Breakers and Motley Fool Supernova. At, he covers disruptive ideas in technology and entertainment, though you'll most often find him writing and talking about the business of comics. Find him online at or send email to For more insights, follow Tim on Google+ and Twitter.

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Foolanthropy 2010

“With an innovative, deserving partner in Thurgood, we’re focusing our efforts where Fools can make a real difference,” says Motley Fool Co-founder and CEO Tom Gardner. This holiday season, help The Motley Fool give disadvantaged students a superior education.

To learn more about our adopted school, or to make a donation, click here.

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