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MySocialGoodNews is dedicated to sharing news about
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Devin D. Thorpe

Devin Thorpe

Monthly Archives: June 2014

JPMorgan Chase & Co. Commits $5 Million to Helping Youth in America Build Strong Foundations for Successful Careers

Thousands of underserved young people across U.S. to obtain summer jobs, with a focus on career pathways

Makes top corporate commitment to youth employment at Clinton Global Initiative America

NEW YORK, June 24, 2014 – Continuing its commitment to workforce readiness and helping underserved youth obtain the skills necessary to build lasting careers, JPMorgan Chase & Co. (NYSE: JPM) today announced a commitment of $5 million over the next two years to summer youth employment initiatives across the U.S. This commitment expects to fund summer jobs for more than 4,000 teenagers and young adults as well as learning opportunities in the fields of science, technology, engineering, arts and math for 20,000 13- to 24-year-olds. The firm’s employees will also volunteer their time with nonprofit partners to provide financial capability coaching sessions and introductory coding skills training to participating youth.

Secretary Hillary Rodham Clinton, who is prioritizing youth employment as one of the key issues for her work at the Clinton Foundation, announced JPMorgan Chase’s Commitment to Action at the 2014 Clinton Global Initiative America meeting.

“Great American companies are committing to expanding training, hiring, and mentoring youth, and to encourage other businesses to step up as well,” said Former Secretary Hillary Rodham Clinton. “JPMorgan Chase will invest $5 million over the next two years to fund 4,000 summer jobs in 14 cities and to offer work readiness opportunities to another 20,000 young people.”

Peter L. Scher, Executive Vice President and Head of Corporate Responsibility for JPMorgan Chase, joined Secretary Clinton in Denver for the announcement. Scher said, “Ensuring that young people have the skills they need to succeed is a national priority. JPMorgan Chase is proud to work with the Clinton Foundation, city leaders and nonprofit partners to train and employ our youth. Investing in skills is the right thing for their future and for the future of our country.”

In 2014, the firm is working with mayors, nonprofit organizations and other private sector employers in 14 cities – Chicago, Dallas, Detroit, Jacksonville, Jersey City, Los Angeles, Louisville, Miami, Milwaukee, New York City, Oakland, San Francisco, Seattle and St. Louis – to engage youth during their summer break to help expand employment among young adults and provide opportunities for at-risk youth to develop skills that will put them on a career pathway.

“I appreciate JPMorgan Chase’s support and participation in the Mayor’s Intern Fellows Program,” Dallas Mayor Mike Rawlings said. “Together we’re helping our children learn and build a résumé to take out into the world.”

“JPMorgan Chase continues to be a great partner in Detroit’s turnaround by investing in our community and in our youth,” said Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan. “By providing meaningful summer work for 1,000 Detroit students this year and next, JPMorgan Chase will provide them a great opportunity to get started on a real career path. This will be a significant boost to our commitment to provide summer jobs to 5,000 Detroit students next summer.”

“We are investing in the future success of San Francisco’s young people by providing more than 7,000 jobs and paid internships for them this summer with a special focus on serving low-income and disadvantaged youth,” said San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee. “I thank JPMorgan Chase for joining me on Summer Jobs Plus as we invest in the future success of our City’s youth this summer and beyond.”

Several programs will focus on providing skills-based jobs, internships and learning opportunities for teenagers and young adults in their respective cities and continue beyond the summer months. These programs will expose youth to careers early on, connect them to growth sectors, help them obtain marketable skills and teach them how to manage their finances. Below are a few examples of programs JPMorgan Chase is supporting in 2014:

  • Summer of Learning and Earning will provide more than 215,000 opportunities for Chicago’s youth, ages 14-24, including 22,000 skill-building jobs and internships and interactive learning activities in libraries, schools, museums and cultural institutions, colleges and universities, and community-based programs, as well as through self-paced, online modules.
  • Mayor’s Intern Fellows Program in Dallas will place more than 300 public high school students in summer positions at some of the city’s top health, technology and energy companies and nonprofits – three of the area’s highest-growth sectors. Now in its seventh year, the Mayor’s office and Education is Freedom will have placed 1,050 students in internships across industry sectors, including technology, healthcare, law, accounting, business, education, the nonprofit sector, advertising/marketing/public relations, engineering, banking, manufacturing and hospitality, by the end of this summer.
  • Grow Detroit’s Young Talent will provide 1,000 Detroit youth, ages 14-24, employment readiness training and six weeks of paid summer work experiences with area employers. The program was created by the Detroit Youth Employment Consortium in 2009 to address high rates of unemployment among Detroit’s teen and young adult populations – unemployment estimated at more than 50 percent. The program has grown each year, providing more than 5,000 Detroit youth with paid summer work experiences since 2009.
  • United Way of Northeast Florida’s Summer Youth Employment Program will provide 140 students in Jacksonville with a six-week paid internship at top organizations, helping them acquire high-demand skills, gain access to mentors and coaches, and build their resumes. Youth will also participate in a financial management simulation lab, which will help them learn how to manage their paycheck and personal finances.
  • Los Angeles Summer of Learning will bring together a coalition of public, private and nonprofit partners and offer education programs and activities through the city’s parks, libraries, schools, museums and cultural institutions. The curriculum will offer learning opportunities in science, technology, engineering, arts and math, as well as a work-readiness pathway geared towards the skills needed to succeed in the modern economy.
  • Three nonprofits in New York City, PENCIL, Futures and Options, and Virtual Enterprises International, will create and sponsor a total of 140 paid internships for underserved high school students. PENCIL will also provide career readiness training to an additional 130 students. Program participants will be introduced to career opportunities, motivated to pursue higher education, and equipped with skills to succeed in the workforce.
  • Summer Jobs+ will connect 7,000 disconnected and at-risk youth (ages 14-24) with paid jobs, internships and job training initiatives in the private sector and San Francisco City departments. Since it started in 2012, Summer Jobs+ has placed more than 12,000 youth in paid summer jobs and internships. This year, the program expands to include placing individuals in employment and training opportunities beyond the summer.

To further complement summer youth employment, JPMorgan Chase is supporting the expansion of the Consumer Federation of America’s America Saves First-time Workers Program. This program will help young workers establish good financial habits as they start earning their first paychecks. Participants will learn how to set up direct deposit, establish savings goals and receive relevant financial education.

This commitment to youth employment is in addition to the five-year, $250 million global economic opportunity initiative, New Skills at Work, launched in late 2013. New Skills at Work is a global workforce readiness and demand-driven training initiative. It aims to address the skills gap that exists across many industries, such as healthcare and advanced manufacturing, where not enough trained workers have the skills needed to fill available jobs.

About JPMorgan Chase & Co.

JPMorgan Chase & Co. (NYSE: JPM) is a leading global financial services firm with assets of $2.5 trillion and operations worldwide. The firm is a leader in investment banking, financial services for consumers and small businesses, commercial banking, financial transaction processing, and asset management. A component of the Dow Jones Industrial Average, JPMorgan Chase & Co. serves millions of consumers in the United States and many of the world’s most prominent corporate, institutional and government clients under its J.P. Morgan and Chase brands. Information about JPMorgan Chase & Co. is available at jpmorganchase.com.

About Clinton Global Initiative America

The Clinton Global Initiative America (CGI America), a program of the Clinton Global Initiative addresses economic recovery in the United States. Established in June 2011 by President Bill Clinton, CGI America brings together leaders in business, government, and civil society to generate and implement commitments to create jobs, stimulate economic growth, foster innovation, and support workforce development in the United States. Since its first meeting, CGI America participants have made over 300 commitments valued at more than $15 billion when fully funded and implemented. To learn more, visit cgiamerica.org.

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Building Careers for Future Leaders of Social Enterprise and Impact Investing

Impact Business Leaders (IBL), a company dedicated to building the social enterprise sector, announced the launch of their IBL@Utah program in Salt Lake City, hosted by the James Lee Sorenson Global Impact Investing Center (SGII), with further support by The Shell Centenary Scholarship Fund and Hitachi Foundation. The program aims to provide skills, mentorship and job opportunities to professionals looking to kick-start their career in social enterprise.

Around the world, social enterprises for-profit businesses that produce a good or service to solve a social problem are proliferating as more entrepreneurs connect their desire to create lasting social or environmental impact with their urge to innovate and build world-class businesses. But these social enterprises often struggle to find the right talent to scale, and it can be a surprisingly hard sector to break into. It is estimated roughly 40 percent of U.S. social enterprises have fewer than five employees.[i] Yet many young professionals are eager to use their business skills to make a tangible difference in the world.

“We have found that globally it is difficult for young professionals to break into social enterprise careers and equally difficult for social enterprises to find the right experienced talent needed to grow,” said IBL¹s Executive Director, David Kyle, who has built start-ups on several continents and worked with Citibank, Acumen Fund, and Calvert Foundation. Impact Business Leaders is filling the market gap by training business professionals, thoroughly vetting both fellows and job opportunities, and matching candidates into social enterprises. By 2015, they aim to have placed 250 professionals into social enterprises globally.

“Our experience shows that our process is very effective at connecting people with jobs in a way that both sides can be excited about, and we expect the vast majority of fellows to secure placements with our partners,” said Kyle.

The IBL@Utah program begins in September 2014 and will offer up to 30 fellows an intensive two-week course exploring social enterprise and impact investing at the University of Utah¹s James Lee Sorenson Global Impact Investing Center (SGII). Unlike other training courses, the IBL program will be taught by leading practitioners such as Ross Baird of Village Capital, Lewis Hower of SGII, Andy Lower of ADAP Capital, and others.

IBL fellows will learn the hands-on reality of building and sustaining innovative businesses and working with investors. They will also gain an enhanced skill-set that will help them add immediate value to social enterprises. SGII¹s Executive Director, Lewis Hower, noted: “IBL fellows leave the training with practical knowledge they can leverage from day one in their job placement. We have a great network of investors and entrepreneurs to provide top-notch workshops, so fellows should come ready to engage and learn.”

IBL fellows are also provided with valuable support in getting their first job in a social enterprise. IBL’s wide network of social enterprises and impact investors enables IBL to find and place fellows so that they can gain practical experience for up to a year. IBL’s partners are also excited about the program as it provides a source of strong talent to grow their businesses. Previous fellows have been placed with IBL partners around the world: Village Capital, SOCAP, Waste Capital Partners, Unreasonable East Africa, and others.

Corey, an IBL Fellow with a consulting and international development background, discussed her placement with a company in Kenya: “IBL facilitated a placement for me at One Degree Solar as a Project Manager. I still have to pinch myself each day that I am working for such an incredible social enterprise. I would not have been able to get to where I am today without IBL and I highly recommend IBL to any early to mid-career professionals.”

IBL is looking for professionals with 3-5+ years of experience, an undergraduate degree, and a genuine interest to pursue a career solving major global challenges. Mr. Kyle encouraged potential applicants to learn more and apply at www.impactbusinessleaders.com.

Images of 2 Local Youth from ‘Shot for College’ Event

On Monday June 23rd RBC Wealth Management held it’s “Shot for College,” a free youth golf clinic with PGA TOUR Winner Brandt Snedeker at the Bethesda County Club in Bethesda, Md. As a part of its commitment to supporting youth education, RBC Wealth Management created the “Shot for College” event, an outing centered on improving the youth participants’ golf games, along with providing them the opportunity to win college scholarships.

“Shot for College” included instruction from Bethesda teaching professionals on short game, golf etiquette and drives from the tee box, and is open to youth ages 12-17.

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15 year old DeAndre Diggs, who attends Arch Bishop Curley High School and belongs to First Tee of Baltimore, receives a $2,500 check towards her college fund from PGA golfer Brandt Snedeker and Pat Vaughan, East Divisional Director, RBC Wealth Management-U.S. at RBC Wealth Management’s ‘Shot for College’ free youth golf clinic event on June 23rd, at the Bethesda County Club in Bethesda, Md.

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15 year old DeAndre Diggs, who attends Arch Bishop Curley High School and belongs to First Tee of Baltimore, receives a $2,500 check towards her college fund from PGA golfer Brandt Snedeker at RBC Wealth Management’s ‘Shot for College’ free youth golf clinic event on June 23rd, at the Bethesda County Club in Bethesda, Md.

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12 year old Rhianna Stitt, who attends Sparrow’s Point Middle School and belongs to First Tee of Baltimore, receives a $2,500 check towards her college fund from PGA golfer Brandt Snedeker and Pat Vaughan, East Divisional Director, RBC Wealth Management-U.S. at RBC Wealth Management’s ‘Shot for College’ free youth golf clinic event on June 23rd, at the Bethesda County Club in Bethesda, Md.

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12 year old Rhianna Stitt, who attends Sparrow’s Point Middle School and belongs to First Tee of Baltimore, receives a $2,500 check towards her college fund from PGA golfer Brandt Snedeker at RBC Wealth Management’s ‘Shot for College’ free youth golf clinic event on June 23rd, at the Bethesda County Club in Bethesda, Md.

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Points of Light Announces 10 Host Sites Chosen to Execute Nationwide ServiceWorks Program

Three-Year Program Funded by the Citi Foundation Will Deploy 225 AmeriCorps Members and Thousands of Volunteers to Help 25,000 Underserved Young Adults Prepare for College and Careers

WASHINGTON, D.C., June 24, 2014 —- Points of Light,one of the world’s leading organizations dedicated to volunteer service, today announced the 10 organizations chosen to execute its ServiceWorks program. ServiceWorks is a three-year nationwide initiative that will use community engagement and volunteer service to help underserved young adults develop the skills they need to prepare for college and careers.

Funded by the Citi Foundation, the program will deploy 225 AmeriCorps members over the next three years, making it the largest corporate-sponsored AmeriCorps VISTA program in the country. ServiceWorks will provide 25,000 underserved young adults, between the ages of 16 and 24, training in critical 21st century leadership and project management skills, the chance to build their networks and connections to community, and the opportunity to use their new skills by participating in and leading volunteer service projects. Thousands of professionals – including Citi employees – will volunteer as success coaches and professional skills trainers.

The 10 chosen ServiceWorks host sites are:

Boston Private Industry Council connects business, the Boston Public Schools, higher education, government, labor, and community organizations to create innovative workforce and education solutions that benefit Boston residents and businesses alike.

Casa Central’s network of social services propels a diverse population of all ages toward self-sufficiency and a higher quality of life, transforming lives and strengthening communities, with a special focus on Hispanics. 

Covenant House Washington is one of the largest and leading nonprofits serving homeless, disconnected, and exploited young people in the Greater Washington, DC Region. 

Greater Miami Service Corps transforms the lives of young people through education and service activities that improve their communities and strengthen Miami’s local workforce. 

Jersey Cares increases the level of meaningful volunteer engagement by creating and managing efficient, high-impact projects that address critical community-identified needs.

Public Allies Los Angeles in partnership with CD tech and Public Allies San Francisco advances new leadership to strengthen communities, nonprofits and civic participation.

The Door empowers young people to reach their potential by providing comprehensive youth development services in a diverse and caring environment.

United Way of Greater St. Louis mobilizes the community with one goal in mind – helping people live their best possible lives. 

The Volunteer Center of North Texas is one of the largest and most active volunteer centers in America. It recruits volunteers to serve local nonprofit agencies, while also providing a range of essential programs and services to member organizations that help them build capacity, go further, and achieve success for their clients and all the causes they serve.

“The ServiceWorks host sites were selected for their national leadership in addressing issues critical to our nation’s youth and for their expertise in building community partnerships, creating innovative solutions and sparking action,” said Tracy Hoover, president of Points of Light. “We’re excited to see how ServiceWorks will help these organizations accelerate change in the lives of young people and in their communities.”

ServiceWorks reflects the spirit of a presidential Memorandum issued in July 2013 that established the Task Force on Expanding National Service and calls for new public-private partnerships that use national service to help solve our nation’s most pressing challenges.

The first 50 AmeriCorps VISTA members will be sworn in later this summer. An additional 75 AmeriCorps members are expected to be chosen in 2015, and a final 100 in 2016. All AmeriCorps VISTA members in the ServiceWorks program will be hosted and managed by the chosen local nonprofits and city agencies.

Powered by AmeriCorps, the Citi Foundation and Points of Light, ServiceWorks will formally launch in August 2014 when the first 50 AmeriCorps VISTA members are trained and stationed at host sites in the 10 cities.

ServiceWorks is a key component of the Citi Foundation’s recently launched Pathways to Progress initiative, a three-year $50 million commitment to give 100,000 low-income youth in the United States the opportunity to develop the workplace skills and leadership experience necessary to compete in a 21st Century economy.

To watch a video on ServiceWorks click here.

The Corporation for National and Community Service is the federal agency that engages more than five million Americans in service through its AmeriCorps, Senior Corps, Social Innovation Fund, and Volunteer Generation Fund programs, and leads the President’s national call to service initiative, United We Serve. For more information, visit www.NationalService.gov.

The Citi Foundation works to promote economic progress in communities around the world and focuses on initiatives that expand financial inclusion. We collaborate with best-in-class partners to create measurable economic improvements that strengthen low-income families and communities. Through a “More than Philanthropy” approach, Citi’s business resources and human capital enhance our philanthropic investments and impact. For more information, visit www.citifoundation.com.

Points of Light – the world’s largest organization dedicated to volunteer service – mobilizes millions of people to take action that is changing the world. Through affiliates in 250 cities and partnerships with thousands of nonprofits and corporations, Points of Light engages 4 million volunteers in 30 million hours of service each year. We bring the power of people where it’s needed most. For more information, go to www.pointsoflight.org.

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Team Intrepid Fallen Heroes Crosses the Finish Line in First Place after Completing the 3,000 Mile “Race across America” To Raise Money for Troops Combating Traumatic Brain Injury and Post Traumatic Stress

Eight-Man Team Maintained Strong Lead, Finishing in Under Six Days, Raising Over $580,000 for the Intrepid Fallen Heroes Fund

New York, NY (June 23, 2014)Team Intrepid Fallen Heroes, a group of eight elite amateur and former professional athletes, finished the 3,000 mile, coast-to-coast Race Across America on Friday, June 20th – taking just five days and twenty hours to cross the finish line in Annapolis, MD. The team came in first place in the eight person team division and raised over $580,000 for the Intrepid Fallen Heroes Fund in the process.

With an original fundraising goal of $250,000, the team raised the bar twice to maximize their impact for the fund, while covering the total cost of the race – approximately $120,000 – independently, so that every dollar raised would go to their cause. The team’s efforts will help the Intrepid Fallen Heroes Fund to build a set of nine advanced medical diagnostic and treatment centers to help wounded military heroes returning from Iraq and Afghanistan who are suffering from Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) and Post Traumatic Stress (PTS). 

Team Intrepid Fallen Heroes was led by Winston Fisher, Partner with the Fisher Brothers real estate firm in New York, and Evan “Chip” Marks, Co-Founder of Sungate Asset Management LLC, a family office in New York specializing in real estate investment. Teammate Jimmy Riccitello, helped managed the team’s logistics throughout the cross country endeavor and is the Technical Director for Ironman and a two-time XTERRA World Champion. Other members of the team include Brian Collins, Head of Development for Fisher Brothers; Hal Goldstein, Founder of NY based architecture firm Janson Goldstein; Scott Cohen, Acquisitions and Development at Fisher Brothers; Stefan Kusurelis, Senior Project Architect for Janson Goldstein; and Dr. Robert DeStefano, one of NY’s leading sports chiropractors and ART practitioners.

“We’re all exhausted after the race and aching all over but it was all worth it”, said Winston Fisher. “Whatever we’re going through now, we know that huge numbers of outstanding men and women have been through more in the service of our country. We’re just grateful for the opportunity to be of some help to those returning heroes who need it.”

Dave Winters, President of the Intrepid Fallen Heroes Fund, said, “All the team members have done an absolutely incredible job in the last week and we’re very proud of what they’ve achieved. Not only did they raise so much money – they actually came in first place. Many more wounded heroes will get the help they need because of the money these guys have raised throughout their training and this week during the race”

The team’s efforts are helping to create nine new Intrepid Spirit Centers, which will operate as satellite centers of the National Intrepid Center of Excellence (NICoE), opened in 2010 at the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center in Bethesda, Md. All the centers will be located at military installations and bases near medical facilities around the country. These convenient locations will allow service members to receive TBI and PTS medical services without leaving their units or leave their families for extended periods of treatment. This proximity to family and friends is expected to enhance service members’ care and rehabilitation.

The first two Intrepid Spirit Centers were opened last year at Ft. Belvoir, Virginia and Camp Lejeune, North Carolina. Together they have already treated over 1,000 service members, since opening their doors in July and August respectively. The third and fourth centers are currently under construction in Ft. Campbell, Kentucky and Fort Bragg, North Carolina and are expected to be operational within the next year. A formal ground breaking was held just two weeks ago for the fifth Intrepid Spirit Center, in Fort Hood, Texas.

Each of the NICoE Satellite Centers is 25,000 sq. ft., and costs approximately $11 million to construct and equip with the latest in brain technology and devices. Each Intrepid Spirit Center is gifted to the Department of Defense upon its completion.

To date, the teams competing in Race Across America have raised over $4 million for charities of their choosing. The race began on June 14th in Oceanside, CA. and is considered to be the world’s harshest endurance athletic event. The route touched 12 states, 88 counties and climbed over 170,000 vertical feet. 

About the Intrepid Fallen Heroes Fund

The Intrepid Fallen Heroes Fund, a national leader in supporting the men and women of the United States Armed Forces and their families, has provided over $150 million in support for the families of military personnel lost in service to our nation, and for severely wounded military personnel and veterans. The Fund most recently opened the National Intrepid Center of Excellence to support the research, diagnosis, and treatment of military personnel and veterans suffering from traumatic brain injury (TBI). In 2013, the Fund launched a new $100 million campaign to build nine NICoE satellite centers at major military installations and bases around the country. These satellite centers will extend the care provided at NICoE to more service members and veterans suffering TBI, PTS and related afflictions.

About Traumatic Brain Injury

Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) occurs when a sudden trauma or head injury disrupts the function of the brain. Common causes of TBI include damage caused by explosive devices, falls and vehicle or motorcycle accidents. Most reported TBI among Operation Enduring Freedom and Operation Iraqi Freedom service members and veterans have been traced back to Improvised Explosive Devices, or IEDs, used extensively against Coalition Forces. Symptoms can appear immediately or in the weeks and months following the injury.

Giving Back – Local Businesses Help West Houston Community Center Save on Summer Energy Bills

With high temperatures coming, a state-of-the-art energy management system significantly reduces energy costs and provides WHCC with more funds to focus on what really matters – the community

HOUSTON – June 25, 2014 – The hot Texas summer is fast approaching and for the West Houston Community Center that means higher energy costs for air conditioning and an increased strain on its budget.

The West Houston Community Center (WHCC) is a nonprofit organization aimed at providing quality facilities that support the community. The center hosts Alcoholics Anonymous meetings, Palmer Drug Abuse Programs (PDAP) for young and older youth, parent/child and multi-family programming, domestic abuse group counseling and Cocaine Anonymous.

To provide a comfortable environment for all of these programs, the center has historically seen a significant spike in the electricity bills during the summer months. But this summer will be vastly different thanks to lower energy rates from Houston-based Entelrgy and an easy to use, energy management solution donated by EnTouch Controls.

Because its programs are hosted at various times and in multiple rooms throughout the WHCC facility, HVAC energy costs have become a significant expense for the organization. One such program is the Family Point Resources, which focuses on programs that enrich the lives of low-income neighborhood children and their families. During the summer they conduct a variety of summer camps at WHCC including dance, art, drama, reading and sports. The camps greatly increase building traffic and are at all times of the day.

Before implementing EnTouch’s web-based energy management solution, WHCC guests were changing temperature settings themselves, or if they did not have access in a given room, they’d call the facility manager to come out to change the settings. The major issue was that when temperature changes were made in the evening, they’d be forgotten, leaving the air conditioning to run throughout the night when the facility was closed.

“Energy is our number one non-personnel expense, but there are simply too many programs and too many different groups within our facility for me to ensure temperatures are properly regulated,” Jorge Quinones, executive director, West Houston Community Center. “EnTouch’s solution completely simplified this process and we expect to see significant energy savings, which will free up our budget to focus on what’s most important to us – the community.”

Entelrgy adopted WHCC into its Community In Action Program, in which the company provides lower-priced energy costs and makes donations to local community organizations and non-profits. In the case of WHCC, Entelrgy professionally renegotiated their energy contract and reduced their annual energy costs by just over $3,000. And on May 8th 2014Entelrgy made an additional charitable contribution of $3,868 to WHCC.

Add to that the donation of the EnTouch Pro Thermostats and WHCC will be able to reduce its energy costs even more by reducing its energy usage. With the EnTouch Pro thermostats in place, guests can text the facility manager for changes and he can manage temperature changes remotely from anywhere with his mobile phone. Additionally, security functionality of the EnTouch Pro allows the facility manager to select a desired temperature and ensure that onsite changes do not exceed +/- 3 degrees of the approved setting. If changes are made, the thermostat will automatically revert back to vacant set points each night.

“The West Houston Community Center is a valued resource providing essential wellness services to its community and it is a shame that so much of its funding was consumed by unnecessary energy costs,” said James Walton, VP of Business Development of EnTouch Controls. “We’re happy to provide the center with the EnTouch Pro thermostats and look forward to continuing our work with them to ensure maximum energy savings.”

“The goal of our Community In Action program in 2014 is to give $100,000 back to local organizations like the WHCC,” said F. Michael Lewis, Vice President of Operations for Entelrgy. “This is EnTouch’s first time teaming up with our Community In Action program, but the combination of our negotiated low rates and energy management is a good one for making the maximum impact on these organizations.”

For more information about how Entelrgy can help your community or business, please visit our website www.EnergyCompete.com or call us at 866-7ENERGY (866-736-3749)

For more information on EnTouch Pro, visit http://entouchcontrols.com/products-services/entouch-promotion-sensing-thermostat/.

About EnTouch Controls

Based in Richardson, Texas, EnTouch Controls is an industry-leading provider of data-driven energy management solutions (EMS). EnTouch Controls’ easy-to-use, web-based solution is designed to leverage real-time analytics to reduce energy consumption and maximize energy savings, to provide visibility across key assets while improving operational efficiency and enhancing overall customer comfort. EnTouch 360™ managed services takes traditional EMS to a higher level by providing dedicated support in managing energy usage and evaluating system issues. EnTouch Controls provides installation, professional services, technical support, energy usage monitoring, overall system performance and manages maintenance issues. Connect with EnTouch Controls on our website, Twitter feed, blog or email Tom Kay, Vice President Sales & Marketing at tom.kay@entouchcontrols.com.

Media Contact:
David Rodewald / Amber Hack
The David James Agency
805-494-9508
entouch@davidjamesagency.com

About Entelrgy

Based in the “Energy Capitol of the World”, Houston, Texas, Entelrgy LLC operates as an energy consultant and broker for commercial and industrial customers. We handle national energy procurement and management for a variety of clients. While offering consulting not only on price and cost reduction, but also utility bill management, HVAC controls, utility construction, engineering services, demand response and lighting retrofits.

Media Contact:
Erin Cutbirth
866-736-3749 x103
Erin.Cutbirth@Entelrgy.com

New App for Wildlife Emergencies Animal Help Now Rolls Out Nationwide

Boulder, CO – Animal Help Now, a new free app created by a Boulder-based nonprofit, has rolled out nationally to provide immediate assistance to people who encounter an injured animal, animal in danger, or one posing a danger to humans. Like a 911 system for animals, the app connects people to veterinarians, wildlife rehabilitators, animal shelters, and other appropriate resources for wildlife-related emergencies.

Animal Help Now is the first reliable service a person can use to find quickly and easily locate appropriate assistance for the full range of animal-related emergencies. The app asks the user simple questions about the emergency, and uses the phone’s time and location data to respond with how to help, whom to call, or where to go. Animal Help Now is available 24/7 to connect users to the proper authority or resource, and can also be used when disaster strikes

“So many veterinarians, wildlife rehabilitators, animal shelters and volunteers care for animals every day, but in an emergency situation – especially outside of normal business hours – quickly finding the right help can be difficult,” said David Crawford, executive director of Animal Help Now. “Animal Help Now has the best, most reliable list of available shelters, veterinarians, wildlife rehabilitators and cruelty investigators for the public to access and assist animals in need.”

Spring and summer are the busy seasons for animal-related emergencies as animals are more active, feeding and protecting their young. Thanks to increasing urbanization, even city dwellers must contend with wildlife issues. App users have saved the lives of thousands of squirrels, turtles, rabbits, pigeons, ducks, coyotes, skunks, raccoons, deer, bats, foxes, and many more.

The app includes a number of features to make helping animals easier and faster. An advance call feature allows the user to contact the veterinarian, shelter, or rehabilitator in advance; GPS-powered maps pinpoint locations, even of stranded marine animals, with incredible accuracy; users can send a photo of the animal in need and send it to the service provider to determine whether the animal needs assistance or can be left alone.

The app is available for iPhone and Android: Free AnimalHelpNow iPhone app (http://bit.ly/11mQ6HI) or Free AnimalHelpNow Android app (http://bit.ly/11jjkIU). A comprehensive website, http://www.animalhelpnow.org, also provides immediate assistance.

To support Animal Help Now’s crowdfunding campaign visit
http://www.loveanimals.org/wildlifeemergencyapp.html

About Animal Watch

Animal Help Now is a project of Animal Watch, a nonprofit organization dedicated to helping animals. Animal Watch relies heavily on volunteers and is financially supported by individual donations and foundations. For more information visit http://www.animalhelpnow.org.

Congress to Vote on Jobs for People with Disabilities

Washington, DC. At a time when 70% of working age Americans with disabilities are outside of the workforce and more than 9 million working age Americans with disabilities are living on government benefits, Congress will vote on bi-partisan, bicameral legislation to increase opportunities for people with disabilities.

The Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) (H.R. 803) and (S. 1356) will reauthorize the WIOA and add to its purpose in the following key ways:

  • To maximize opportunities for individuals with disabilities, including individuals with significant disabilities, for competitive integrated employment,
  • To increase employment opportunities and employment outcomes for individuals with disabilities, including through encouraging meaningful input by employers and vocational rehabilitation service providers on successful and prospective employment and placement strategies, and
  • To ensure, to the greatest extent possible, that youth with disabilities and students with disabilities who are transitioning from receipt of special education services under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (20 U.S.C. 1400 et. seq.) and receipt of services under section 504 of this Act are either continuing their education or employed in competitive integrated employment independently.

“Polls show that the majority of people with disabilities want to work. Hiring people with disabilities can also make companies more profitable. Nationally Walgreens, hospitals, AMC theaters, EY and others have found this to be true as employees with disabilities, when aligned with their talents and interests, are productive, loyal and successful,” commented Jennifer Laszlo Mizrahi, president of RespectAbilityUSA, a non profit working to empower people with disabilities to achieve the American dream. Recently the organization released a major report on jobs for people with disabilities. “This legislation recognizes that hiring Americans with disabilities can be win-win-win for people with disabilities, employers and taxpayers alike. The U.S. spends billions each year on benefits to people who, in most cases, would rather have a hand up than a hand out. They need to be included in employment because of the talents they bring to the table. Their work and commitments to success can be a part of how the U.S. can compete successfully.”

If passed, this bill will build on the work done over the past two years by the National Governors Association (NGA) and individual governors who are shifting dramatically to “employment first” policies. The NGA has put employment of people with disabilities at the center of their work with both “A Better Bottom Line: Employing People with Disabilities” as well as the new focus, “America Works: Education and Training for Tomorrow’s Jobs” on workforce development.

According to a high level source involved in the process on Capitol Hill, “The changes WIOA makes to the Vocational Rehabilitation Act are a significant step towards bringing the needs of the disability community into the 21st century.” When asked if WIOA reauthorization will have a section to encourage employers to hire people with disabilities by changing their perceptions of the abilities of people with disabilities/the benefits of having people with disabilities (PwDs) in their workforce, the source responded that “The outreach efforts and programs are not specifically called out in our bill. Rather, they would all be allowable uses within the funding allocated to the states. We have given states as much flexibility as possible to address their local needs regarding VR.”

The Senate is expected to take this bill up either today or tomorrow, and passage could be prior to the end of the week. The new legislation will streamline programs and make them more accountable to people with disabilities and taxpayers alike. Indeed, as has been pointed out repeatedly by RespectAbilityUSA, the Government Accounting Office (GAO) identified 45 programs that supported employment for people with disabilities in fiscal year 2010, reflecting a fragmented system of services. The programs were administered by nine federal agencies and overseen by even more congressional committees. All programs overlapped with at least one other program in that they provided one or more similar employment service to a similar population—people with disabilities. However, there was little coordination or collaboration and only 10 of the 45 programs reported that an evaluation had been conducted the last 5 years before the GAO report was issued in 2012. Just one of the 45 programs (Job Corps) reported conducting an impact study—a study that would most clearly show whether the program (and not other factors) was responsible for improved employment outcomes for people with disabilities.

Said Mizrahi, “We don’t see much bipartisan agreement in Washington these days, but thanks to U.S. Senators Patty Murray (D-WA), Johnny Isakson (R-GA), Tom Harkin (D-IA), and Lamar Alexander (R-TN), as well as to Congresspeople John Kline (R-MN), Virginian Fox (R-NC), George Miller (D-CA) and others, this is completely bipartisan.” The bill was previously known in the House as the SKILLS Act and is supported by a broad group of leaders and organizations. According to the U.S. Census 56 million Americans have disabilities and people with disabilities (PwDs) represent 18.6% of our population.

To find out how your Representatives and Senators will vote on this important legislation, call the Congressional switchboard at 1-202-224-3121 or 202-225-3121 and ask to speak with their office.

For more information contact: Jennifer Laszlo Mizrahi at JenniferM@RespectAbilityUSA.org

Jack Kent Cooke Foundation Announces 2014 Graduate Arts Awards Recipients

LANSDOWNE, VA – The Jack Kent Cooke Foundation is pleased to announce the 20 up-and-coming artists receiving the 2014 Graduate Arts Awards. The leading graduate scholarship in the nation for the visual arts, performing arts, and creative writing, the Graduate Arts Award provides up to $50,000 per year for up to three years for exceptional students with financial need to study at an accredited graduate institution in the U.S. or abroad.

“We believe that society is enriched through art and our most exceptional artists should be able to develop and share their talents, regardless of their financial means,” said Vice President of Programs Emily Froimson. “By removing a financial obstacle, our award will allow these students to focus on studying and honing their crafts.”

In this its fourth year, the Jack Kent Cooke Foundation Graduate Arts Award elicited 320 applications and portfolios from students in 41 states and the District of Columbia. The 20 finalists represent just 7 percent of the total applicant pool. They were selected by a 38-member panel of experienced artists and arts educators in the fields of music, dance, theater, creative writing, visual arts, and film.

The Jack Kent Cooke Foundation congratulates the following award recipients:

Isidore Bethel
Undergraduate Institution: Harvard University
Graduate Institution: To be determined

Thomas Capobianco
Undergraduate Institution: Temple University
Graduate Institution: University of Cincinnati

August Cohn Thomas
Undergraduate Institution: University of Massachusetts-Amherst
Graduate Institution: University of Edinburgh (UK)

Gregory Cuellar
Undergraduate Institution: Saint Louis University
Graduate Institution: Columbia University

Maeghan Dineen
Undergraduate Institution: State University of New York at Geneseo
Graduate Institution: University of Limerick (Ireland)

Myles Dunigan
Undergraduate Institution: Rhode Island School of Design
Graduate Institution: University of Kansas

Zachary Evans
Undergraduate Institution: Kennesaw State University
Graduate Institution: University of Texas at Austin

Jan-Henry Gray
Undergraduate Institution: San Francisco State University
Graduate Institution: Columbia College of Chicago

Jossalyn Jensen
Undergraduate Institution: Cleveland Institute of Music
Graduate Institution: The Juilliard School

Eloise Kim
Undergraduate Institution: The Colburn School
Graduate Institution: To be determined

Louis King
Undergraduate Institution: University of Michigan-Ann Arbor
Graduate Institution: University of the Arts, London (UK)

Natalie Krause
Undergraduate Institution: Kansas City Art Institute
Graduate Institution: To be determined

Sasha LaPointe
Undergraduate Institution: Institute of American Indian Arts
Graduate Institution: Institute of American Indian Arts

Yuebing Lin
Undergraduate Institution: The Juilliard School
Graduate Institution: The Juilliard School

James Manganello
Undergraduate Institution: University of Michigan-Ann Arbor
Graduate Institution: University of London, Birkbeck College (UK)

Zoe Melcher
Undergraduate Institution: University of Missouri-Kansas City
Graduate Institution: Royal Conservatoire of Scotland (UK)

Jonathan Molina Garcia
Undergraduate Institution: University of North Texas
Graduate Institution: California Institute of the Arts

Robin Myers
Undergraduate Institution: Massachusetts College of Art and Design
Graduate Institution: Yale University

Michael Parmelee
Undergraduate Institution: Hope College
Graduate Institution: University of Michigan

Jinxiang Yu
Undergraduate Institution: Queens College, City University of New York
Graduate Institution: Yale University

The Jack Kent Cooke Foundation is a private, independent foundation dedicated to advancing the education of exceptionally promising students who have financial need. Because we believe that high-potential, low-income students will excel educationally when given the resources to develop their talents, the Foundation supports exceptional students from elementary school to graduate school through scholarships, grants, direct service, and knowledge creation and dissemination. Founded in 2000 by the estate of Jack Kent Cooke, the Foundation has awarded $120 million for over 2,000 scholarships and $76 million in grants to organizations that support our mission. www.jkcf.org

JPMorgan Chase & Co. Announces Expansion of Intensive Academic and Social Enrichment Program for Young Men of Color in New York, Chicago and Los Angeles

The Fellowship Initiative offers comprehensive support to high school students to help them achieve personal and professional success

Former Secretary of State General Colin Powell and former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg join Jamie Dimon for announcement today

June 23, 2014 (New York, NY) – JPMorgan Chase & Co. today announced the expansion of The Fellowship Initiative (TFI) to Chicago and Los Angeles along with a new, larger class of Fellows in New York City. The Fellowship Initiative, first launched in New York City in 2010 as a multi-year pilot developed by JPMorgan Chase, enrolls young men of color in a comprehensive, hands-on enrichment program that includes academic, social and emotional support at a critical juncture in their lives to help them achieve personal and professional success.

Many young men of color from economically-distressed communities do not have access to the educational opportunities and support systems they need to succeed. It is well-recognized that Black and Latino students in New York City, Chicago and Los Angeles graduate from high school at rates well below those of their non-minority peers. At a minimum, future employability requires a high school degree, but real economic opportunity involves much more.

“These young men need access to high quality education and positive role models in and outside the classroom,” Jamie Dimon, Chairman and CEO of JPMorgan Chase & Co, will say today during an event with former Secretary of State General Colin Powell and former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg announcing the program expansion. “We want to raise their expectations for what they can achieve in life – and give them the tools for academic and personal success. The Fellowship Initiative is a smart investment in their individual futures and the future of our country.”

Beginning in 2010, JPMorgan Chase launched a pilot in New York City to see if the right combination of intensive academic and leadership training could help young men of color complete their high school education and gain admission to top colleges and universities. The pilot demonstrated that with a comprehensive enrichment program, these students were able to rise to the challenge, work hard and expand their personal and economic horizons.

“America’s continued strength depends on our young people getting the education and support they need to succeed in an increasingly competitive world,” said General Colin Powell. “At America’s Promise, we launched GradNation to help raise the national average on-time high school graduation rate to 90 percent by 2020. By focusing intensively on young men of color and providing hands-on mentorship and support in high school and college, JPMorgan Chase’s Fellowship Initiative is an excellent example of the commitment our country needs to preserve the long-term success of our nation. I am pleased to be on President Obama’s ‘My Brother’s Keeper’ task force, which is also complimented by the JPMorgan Chase Fellowship Initiative.”

“Helping young Black and Latino men overcome the obstacles they face is an urgent challenge that has been too long ignored,” said former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg. “In New York City, we created a public-private partnership called the Young Men’s Initiative to confront the challenge head-on. We need more civic-minded companies and organizations to step up and join this work, and I congratulate JPMorgan Chase for being a leader in this effort and for making a real difference in the lives of young men of color in our city.”

The 24 Fellows who completed the three-year pilot starting in their sophomore year of high school reported elevated academic goals, career aspirations and life-changing personal growth. Each of these Fellows who completed the pilot program graduated from high school on-time, gained admission to a four-year college program and, collectively, received scholarships and grants totaling $8.4 million. More than half were the first in their family to attend college.

“We need to do more to ensure that young men of color are not left behind,” said Dalila Wilson-Scott, President of the JPMorgan Chase Foundation. “One of the most important lessons we learned during The Fellowship Initiative pilot in New York City was that students respond positively to commitment. They were able to unlock their overall potential when they had sustained access to academic and social supports alongside mentoring.”

The Fellowship Initiative in Chicago, Los Angeles and New York City will include:

  • Academic training and project-based learning throughout the school year and summer;
  • Leadership and entrepreneurship training;
  • One-on-one mentorship with JPMorgan Chase employees;
  • College tours and college preparation workshops;
  • SAT prep coursework; and
  • Team-building events.

The Fellows will also receive support services and coaching through college, as well as opportunities for summer internships at JPMorgan Chase. In addition, their families will participate in educational workshops about the college application process.

JPMorgan Chase is recruiting 120 students – 40 students in each city – to participate in the program. Recruiting began in May, and students who are enrolled in the program will begin orientation in July and the full program in October. The Fellowship Initiative will begin with a week on college campuses.

“The Fellowship Initiative is a program that addresses the current state of crisis young men of color are facing, which is arguably the most urgent and prevalent social issue in American society,” said Dariel Vasquez, a Fellow from the New York City pilot program. “TFI provided me both the professional and academic development I desperately needed to become successful in high school and in college. The program practically put me a year ahead of my peers. TFI gave me exposure to a world I didn’t even know existed and prepared me to successfully navigate through any obstacles that may present themselves. It goes without saying that I wouldn’t be here today had it not been for programs like TFI.”

Other Notable Statements of Support for The Fellowship Initiative

“The JPMC Fellowship Initiative is exactly what the President’s call to action through My Brother’s Keeper is all about: creating powerful mentorship and fellowship opportunities for young men of color,” said U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan. “Programs like these are catalysts for success in college and careers, building pathways to opportunity for our nation’s most vulnerable youth, who are too often left out of the mainstream workforce.”

“As the largest school district in the nation, we know that programs like the JPMorgan Chase Fellowship Initiative provide invaluable academic and social supports to our young men of color,” said New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio. “I’m thrilled that The Fellowship Initiative is expanding in New York City giving additional students a chance to reach their individual potential and graduate high school prepared for success in college and career.”

“In Chicago, our goal is 100% college-ready, 100% college-bound for every child, and that is what The Fellowship Initiative achieves for these young men who participate,” said Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel. “Having a mentor who unlocks their potential and unleashes their talents in a constructive safe environment is the strongest tool there is for transforming lives. These opportunities not only benefit the young people who take advantage of them, they benefit our whole society, because when one young person succeeds in life, it is a win for our country.”

“I’m pleased that JPMorgan Chase’s Fellowship Initiative will help young men of color in Los Angeles create opportunities for personal and economic success,” said Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti. “I’m confident the academic support and leadership training offered to these students will help them prepare for college and get the skills they need to start rewarding careers.”

For more information and to view a short film about The Fellowship Initiative, visit www.jpmorganchase.com/TFI.

JPMorgan Chase & Co. (NYSE: JPM) is a leading global financial services firm with assets of $2.5 trillion and operations worldwide. The Firm is a leader in investment banking, financial services for consumers and small businesses, commercial banking, financial transaction processing, and asset management. A component of the Dow Jones Industrial Average, JPMorgan Chase & Co. serves millions of consumers in the United States and many of the world’s most prominent corporate, institutional and government clients under its J.P. Morgan and Chase brands. Information about JPMorgan Chase & Co. is available at www.jpmorganchase.com.

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