Calhoun: Wake-Up Call

Pennies for Peace

Give PeaceJam a chance.

On March 8, a handful of celebs — including Nate Corddly and Martin Sheen — will launch Refunds for Good, which aims to take $20 billion collected over the past 108 years through a federal telephone tax — the "War Tax" — and redirect it to three worthy non-profits. "We've scoured the planet for some of the most compelling charities around," Sheen says. "This is a unique, one-time opportunity to help the planet and to make a powerful statement at the same time."

Arvada-based PeaceJam is one of the beneficiaries, along with the Solar Electric Light Fund and Physicians for Social Responsibility. "It has gained an incredible kind of momentum and has made a huge, huge difference in the lives of many young people in giving them hope and direction," says Archbishop Desmond Tutu of PeaceJam, which celebrated its tenth anniversary in Denver last fall.

According to RFG, a recent court ruling determined that the IRS owes $10 billion to American businesses, and another $10 billion to individuals — but the refunds, an average of $30 to $60 per person, are only available this tax season. "It's all on the up-and-up," says PeaceJam founder Ivan Suvanjieff. "We only have a six-week window to work this."

To find out how to direct your refund to one of the three charities, go to To find out more about PeaceJam, go to — Patricia Calhoun

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Patricia Calhoun co-founded Westword in 1977; she’s been the editor ever since. She’s a regular on the weekly CPT12 roundtable Colorado Inside Out, played a real journalist in John Sayles’s Silver City, once interviewed President Bill Clinton while wearing flip-flops, and has been honored with numerous national awards for her columns and feature-writing.
Contact: Patricia Calhoun