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MySocialGoodNews is dedicated to sharing news about
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Devin D. Thorpe

Devin Thorpe

Monthly Archives: February 2017

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United Religions Initiative and UNAIDS Partner in the Fight Against AIDS.

Press Release – February 27, 2017 – San Francisco, CA. The United Religions Initiative (URI) and UNAIDS are proud to announce they are now working in partnership against HIV and AIDS.

UNAIDS, the Joint United Nations (UN) Programme on HIV and AIDS, is a world leader in the global response to AIDS. It brings together the efforts and resources of 10 UN system organizations: ILO, UNDP, UNESCO, UNFPA, UNHCR, UNICEF, UNODC, WFP, WHO, and the World Bank. The UNAIDS Secretariat is based in Geneva and works in more than 75 countries worldwide. It has adopted a strategy to end the AIDS epidemic as a public health threat by 2030.

URI is a global, grassroots, interfaith network that builds bridges between people of different religious and cultural traditions, and facilitates interfaith cooperation on projects, such as public health, that benefit whole communities both locally and globally. Many of its grassroots groups specifically target AIDS, such as Society for Awareness & Prevention of HIV/ AIDS, a URI group based in New Delhi, which provides awareness education to sex-workers and migrants, manages counseling centers, and advocates HIV/AIDS education as part of the public health agenda across the Indian subcontinent.

Another example of URI’s ongoing AIDS prevention work is Burundi Women for Peace, a group based in war-torn Burundi, which brings together people from Indigenous, Christian, and Muslim spiritual backgrounds to support African women and children in HIV and AIDS prevention.

The seeds for the URI-UNAIDS partnership were planted at the end of last month, during the African Union Heads of States meeting held in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. Mussie Hailu (Regional Director for Africa and Global Envoy of URI) met with H.E. Mr. Michel Sidibe (Executive Director of UNAIDS and Under-Secretary-General of the United Nations) and H.E. Amb. Rosemary Museminali (UNAIDS representative to the African Union and United Nations Economic Commission for Africa).

Together with UNAIDS, URI looks forward to supporting the global fight against HIV and AIDS, and to improving the health and lives of all people planet-wide.

ABOUT UNITED RELIGIONS INITIATIVE (URI)

URI is a global grassroots interfaith network that cultivates peace and justice by engaging people to bridge religious and cultural differences and work together for the good of their communities and the world. We implement our mission through local and global initiatives that build the capacity of our 830 member groups and organizations, called Cooperation Circles, to engage in community action such as conflict resolution and reconciliation, environmental sustainability, education, women’s and youth programs, and advocacy for human rights. Learn more at www.uri.org.

Sunpower By Freedom Solar Announces New Incentive For Rural Texas Residents To Go Solar In Effort To Become A Carbon Neutral Business

Press Release – AUSTIN — Freedom Solar, the leader in turnkey solar installations in Texas, has announced a substantial new incentive for homeowners serviced in rural electric cooperatives (outside of Austin and San Antonio) to install solar on their homes.

Freedom Solar is offering qualifying homeowners an up-front rebate of 15 cents per watt, up to $3,000. A qualifying homeowner is anyone who lives in a utility territory that does not currently offer a rebate for solar.

“Our commitment as a company is to increase solar adoption across all areas of Texas, especially to the 75 rural electric cooperatives that serve more than 3 million residents but do not offer any economic incentives for solar generation,” says Kyle Frazier, director of sales.

The discount represents the value of renewable energy credits generated by the residential solar system, which Freedom Solar will purchase from the customer and retire as part of the company’s commitment to building a more sustainable future for generations to come.

Freedom Solar started utilizing the policy of purchasing renewable energy credits to offset the carbon footprint associated with its operations last year, and hopes to become entirely carbon-neutral by 2018.

Bret Biggart, managing director, says: “Over the past decade we’ve seen solar prices decrease and solar efficiency increase dramatically; however, the upfront cost of solar installations often makes it impossible for rural Texas residents to transition to renewable energy because they don’t have access to the same substantial solar rebates offered by municipal city utilities. We’ve introduced this new program to change that and make solar accessible to all Texans.”

Freedom Solar’s innovative rural rebate program is made possible by their partnership with SunPower as a master dealer, the only company with that distinction in Texas.

Freedom Solar will be able to provide 40 homeowners with this incentive to per quarter, for a total of 160 budgeted per year.

“For us, the best part of solar energy is that doing the right thing environmentally is also the right thing to do financially. This program is a small part of our efforts to help build a more economically and environmentally sustainable future for Texas and one more step towards making that dream a reality,” says Frazier.

For more information, visit http://www.freedomsolarpower.com/.

VF Corporation Acts to Minimize Impacts on Endangered Forests

VF releases its first forest derived materials policy, detailing preferences for materials that help conserve forest habitats

Press Release – GREENSBORO, NC – VF Corporation (NYSE: VFC), a global leader in branded lifestyle apparel, footwear and accessories, today released its first-ever Forest Derived Materials Policy, which sets formal guidelines for the company’s purchasing preferences and use of sustainable forest materials and products.

“Deforestation and forest degradation continues to be a global issue affecting climate change and human rights,” said Letitia Webster, VF’s Vice President of Global Corporate Sustainability. “This policy provides clear guidance across our many purchasing categories and it enables us to play our part in protecting the world’s forests.”

VF’s forestry policy aims to avoid the issues associated with deforestation and forest degradation including the loss of ancient and endangered forests, loss of biodiversity and habitat, use of forced labor in making forestry products and loss of indigenous peoples and local community rights.

The policy emphasizes the use of products made with recycled fiber whenever possible. Also, it promotes the use of Forest Stewardship Council (FSC)-certified paper and fiber, while striving to elevate all third party forestry management certification systems.

The policy strengthens VF’s broader efforts to use responsibly sourced materials throughout its global operations and supply chain. The company also developed and adheres to existing policies for the purchase and use of Conflict Minerals, Cotton Country of Origin, and Animal Derived Materials, in addition to a Restricted Substances List for its chemical management program.

VF partnered with a number of NGOs and external stakeholders, including Canopy, a not-for-profit environmental organization dedicated to protecting forests, species and climate. VF’s policy supports the CanopyStyle initiative, which has a goal to eliminate the use of ancient and endangered forests in the production of forest derived fabrics such as rayon and viscose from the apparel and fashion industries by the end of 2017.

“When an apparel giant like VF expands its forest commitment with a policy like this, it adds incredible momentum to global forest conservation and climate efforts,” said Nicole Rycroft, Executive Director of Canopy. “From hang tags, to packaging to fabrics, some of America’s favorite global brands are protecting the world’s forests and the species that call them home.”

Learn more about VF’s responsible use of raw materials and its overall sustainability and responsibility program at sustainability.vfc.com.

About VF

VF Corporation (NYSE: VFC) outfits consumers around the world with its diverse portfolio of iconic lifestyle brands, including Vans®, The North Face®, Timberland®, Wrangler® and Lee®. Founded in 1899, VF is one of the world’s largest apparel, footwear and accessories companies with socially and environmentally responsible operations spanning numerous geographies, product categories and distribution channels. VF is committed to delivering innovative products to consumers and creating long-term value for its customers and shareholders. For more information, visit www.vfc.com.

Canopy is a not-for-profit environmental organization dedicated to protecting our forests, species and climate. Canopy collaborates with more than 750 companies to develop innovative solutions, to make their supply chains more sustainable, and to help protect our world’s remaining ancient and endangered forests. Canopy’s partners include H&M, Sprint, Penguin Random House, Zara, TC Transcontinental, The Globe and Mail, and Scholastic. Canopy’s work relies on the support of individual donors who share our passion for the planet. www.canopyplanet.org

Himalayan Cataract Project Semi-Finalist for $100 Million Grant

Second Suns tells the true story of the people and history behind the Himalayan Cataract Project – Publisher donates a portion of the proceeds for every copy sold

Press Release – New York (Feb 24, 2017)Second Suns by David Oliver Relin tells the story of the invention of a remarkable surgery that cures blindness and of those working to make it available to the world’s neediest through the charitable work of the Himalayan Cataract Project (HCP), a nonprofit that was just named one of eight semi-finalists in 100&Change, a global competition for a single $100 million grant from the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation.

Second Suns is the story of two doctors, Dr. Geoffrey Tabin and Dr. Sanduk Ruit, who came together to develop a pioneering, 10-minute surgery to treat cataracts—an entirely curable disease and a leading cause of avoidable blindness, afflicting more than 18 million people worldwide—for less than $25 per person. The Experiment has published this remarkable story in paperback for the first time, and, moreover, is donating a portion of the proceeds from every book sold to HCP.

“Reading Second Suns, it’s impossible not to feel that the work of Drs. Ruit and Tabin is among the most important work being done by anyone, anywhere on our planet,” says Matthew Lore, publisher of The Experiment. “Seeing that this new edition gets into the hands of readers everywhere is one way we as the publisher are helping to support the HCP’s far-reaching initiatives to eradicate preventable blindness. But we wanted to do more, hence our deciding to donate a portion of the proceeds from the sale of each copy. We are thrilled that The MacArthur Foundation has also recognized the importance of HCP’s work by naming them as a semifinalist for this historic grant.”

The Himalayan Cataract Project has worked since 1995 to develop sustainable solutions for needless blindness throughout Asia and Africa. The organization first developed its systems in Nepal, where the prevalence of blindness has fallen by two-thirds since the early 1990s.

“The 100&Change grant could enable the Himalayan Cataract Project to reach the tipping point to eliminate needless blindness on a global scale,” says Dr. Geoffrey Tabin, the Co-Founder of the Himalayan Cataract Project, and protagonist in Second Suns.

In June 2016, the MacArthur Foundation launched the 100&Change competition, offering a $100 million grant to fund a single project that makes measurable progress towards solving a significant global problem. The winner will be announced later this year.

Second Suns: Two Trailblazing Doctors and Their Quest to Cure Blindness, One Pair of Eyes at a Time is available for sale at all retailers and at www.theexperimentpublishing.com

The Elizabeth Taylor AIDS Foundation Celebrates Legendary Star’s 85th Birthday With Video Fundraiser To Be Matched By Close Friend Kathy Ireland’s Firm

Press Release – LOS ANGELES, Feb. 23, 2017 — In honor of what would have been Elizabeth Taylor’s 85th birthday on February 27th, The Elizabeth Taylor AIDS Foundation (ETAF) is releasing a short video today to celebrate her incredible legacy.

Dame Elizabeth’s close friend, Kathy Ireland, for whom she was a mentor in creating her leading lifestyle design firm, kathy ireland® WorldWide (kiWW®), has pledged kiWW’s matching donations up to $100,000 “to carry forward this most compassionate woman’s dedication to those impacted.”

“Elizabeth’s passion and courage in finding a cure for AIDS was ferocious,” says Ireland of her close friend and mentor. “She was a glamorous Hollywood icon, and yet she chose to take a path in life that would alienate her from so many, because she knew that to watch people suffer from this disease and not do anything about it, is unconscionable. And she gave it her all and became one of the most powerful activists of all time. Before Elizabeth, people were dying of AIDS, after Elizabeth, people are living with HIV. We all must continue the work of this beautiful and courageous woman.” Committed to carrying on the fight against HIV/AIDS, Kathy was recently named an Ambassador to ETAF.

Photo courtesy kathy ireland® WorldWide (kiWW®)

The video reflects on one of the most unforgettable figures of the big screen, diving into Elizabeth Taylor’s unique and multifaceted fame, and the path that led her from actress to activist.

Philanthropist, artist, and actress Miley Cyrus generously narrated the video as a nod to their shared experiences growing up in the public eye. As child actresses, both women lived lives captured by headlines and chose to use their platforms to advocate fearlessly for the rights of the most marginalized communities.

Click HERE to watch the moving video tribute on ETAF’s YouTube channel.

Please help continue to carry Elizabeth Taylor’s torch and donate to ETAF in honor of her birthday by going to http://elizabethtayloraidsfoundation.org/donate/ or you can text LOVE to 27722 to donate $10.

SOURCE The Elizabeth Taylor AIDS Foundation

NEWS PROVIDED BY
The Elizabeth Taylor AIDS Foundation

Video Narrated by Miley Cyrus

Related Links

http://www.elizabethtayloraidsfoundation.org

Fatima Goss Graves Appointed Next CEO and President of the National Women’s Law Center

Co-Presidents Greenberger and Campbell Stepping Down in July

Press Release – WASHINGTON, D.C. (February 23, 2017) — The Board of Directors of the National Women’s Law Center, a preeminent advocate for advancing equality and opportunity for women and girls, said today that it has named Fatima Goss Graves, NWLC Senior Vice President for Program, as the organization’s next CEO and President. She will succeed NWLC’s founders and Co-Presidents Marcia D. Greenberger and Nancy Duff Campbell, whose extraordinary vision and leadership have been at the heart of the organization’s work to improve the lives of women and girls for over four decades. Campbell and Greenberger will step down on July 1, 2017.

“Under Marcia and Duffy’s leadership, the Center has made groundbreaking contributions to nearly every major advancement for women and girls since the organization’s inception in 1972,” said Board Chair Jane Sherburne. “Looking to the future, the Center is committed to building on their legacy, eliminating barriers and expanding possibilities for women and girls in a dynamic and changing world. Fatima has the skills and experience to do just that, pairing her law and policy expertise with the savvy to engage the organization’s nearly one million supporters and expand its connections with a newly energized public.”

“The Center has played a pivotal role in the women’s movement and I am honored to be its next leader, following in the footsteps of Duffy and Marcia, who have been extraordinary trail blazers and mentors to so many in the movement,” said Goss Graves. “We are living in a transformational moment, with potentially lasting consequences in the fight for equality, fairness and democratic principles. Women and girls are facing unprecedented assaults on their rights and economic security. To meet these challenges, our work must be inclusive, with a particular focus on the experiences and interconnected threats facing LGBTQ people, women of color, immigrant women, and low-income families. I am inspired to work on their behalf and honored to be part of NWLC’s exceptional team of more than 60 individuals who are ready for the battles ahead. Together, we will translate the incredible energy and activism of this pivotal moment in our nation’s history into lasting change.”

Goss Graves, who has served in numerous roles at NWLC for more than a decade, has spent her career fighting to advance opportunities for women and girls. She has a distinguished track record working across a broad set of issues central to women’s lives, including income security, health and reproductive rights, education access, and workplace fairness. Goss Graves received her J.D. from Yale Law School in 2001 and is widely recognized for her effectiveness in the complex public policy arena at both the state and federal levels. She began her career as a litigator at the law firm of Mayer Brown after clerking for the Honorable Diane P. Wood of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit.

Campbell and Greenberger informed the NWLC Board of Directors last summer of their plan to step down. The Board retained the executive search firm Russell Reynolds to assist in a rigorous search for the Center’s next leader. The Board unanimously approved Goss Graves as the best candidate to lead the Center and believes that her qualifications, experience, and deep familiarity with the Center and its capacity will ensure a seamless leadership transition during a critical moment in the national experience.

“I am enormously proud of all this organization has accomplished in its 45 years,” said Greenberger. “But as the last weeks have demonstrated, the need for the Center is even more urgent than ever. Fatima is ready for these times and, under her leadership, the Center is well-positioned to combine its advocacy with a newly activated public and its legal and policy expertise to effectively advocate for women and girls – in legislatures, administrative agencies, the judiciary, as well as the court of public opinion. I am thrilled with the Board’s selection of Fatima and excited about the Center’s future.”

“The Center’s strength has always been its ability to strategically apply depth, knowledge, and know-how to push the fight for equality forward,” said Campbell. “Fatima is deeply passionate about the Center’s work and the lives of the women the Center helps. She has proven her effectiveness as a brilliant lawyer, an effective advocate, a visionary leader, and an inspiring role model. She is the right leader for these challenging times.”

“The nation owes an enormous debt of gratitude to Marcia and Duffy, who were among the ‘founding mothers’ of the women’s movement,” said Sherburne. “Under their leadership, the Center has won critical legal protections necessary to help women and girls achieve their potential at every stage of their lives — at school, at work, at home, and in their communities. Their contribution to the nation is both profound and extensive. We look forward to celebrating their accomplishments and legacy of leadership at the Center’s 45th anniversary gala this October.”

The Love Project Launches A Social Movement Based On Love

Press Release – February 23, 2017 (New York, NY) – The Love Project, a new social activation campaign whose mission is to address the need for love in the world, and to amplify and inspire love, was unveiled today. With its untapped potential to unite, the campaign is based on the view that love is the foundation for a happier, more beautiful world.

The Love Project is an extension of Revlon’s Love is On campaign, which launched in 2014, and reflects the brand’s belief in the power of love and the diversity of beauty. ‎

This is the beginning of a social movement campaign that will continue through upcoming collaborations and calls-to-action to spread more love in the world. The campaign previews with a 30 second video, featuring “Million Reasons” by Lady Gaga, posted exclusively on the singer’s social channels. This video will be followed by a commercial spot directed by Brett Ratner and starring Lady Gaga, Pharrell Williams and Ellen DeGeneres, that will air during The 89th Academy Awards broadcast on Sunday, February 26th. The commercial will initiate a call-to-action to help spread more love in the world, inviting anyone who is inspired by love to visit theloveproject2017.com and create custom, shareable content that symbolizes what love means to them with the hashtag #Lovein3Words.

Visitors will also be invited to support Born This Way Foundation, From One Hand to AnOTHER, The Trevor Project and/or the Women’s Heart Alliance (the “WHA”), all founding not-for-profit partners of The Love Project.

“The Love Project is the beginning of a social movement which aims to inspire more love, acceptance and caring in the world,” said Carlos Barreto, Revlon Senior Vice President Marketing. “At the heart of this campaign is the belief that all people are beautiful and that love can create a better world.”

Revlon has committed one million dollars in combined charitable contributions to the following founding not-for-profit partners; WHA, which is dedicated to women’s heart health, to Born This Way Foundation, which is committed to building to a kinder and braver world by empowering young people, From One Hand to AnOther, which aims to provide at risk kids with educational tools and resources, and to the Trevor Project which provides crisis intervention and suicide prevention services to lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and questioning (LGBTQ) young people ages 13-24.

In addition, to amplify the #LoveIn3Words message, Revlon has teamed with Amazon as the first-ever beauty company to do a shipping box takeover. Select Amazon fulfillment centers are shipping customer orders in Revlon-branded boxes featuring the #LoveIn3Words call-to-action for a limited time.

Consumers can join the Love Project movement by visiting theloveproject2017.com to create their custom #Lovein3Words to post on their social channels, make a donation or inspire others to join in and help spread the love. As the campaign unfolds, consumers will learn more ways in which they can choose love and inspire others to do the same.

About Revlon:

Revlon is a global cosmetics company regarded as an industry innovator and color expert. Revlon’s LOVE IS ON brand mission and CHOOSE LOVE campaign help empower and inspire women around the world to be proactive in choosing and celebrating love. Founded in 1932 with revolutionary opaque nail enamel, Revlon today offers consumers in 130 countries and territories a range of superior mass market color cosmetics for the face, eye and its heritage lip and nail. The Revlon portfolio includes Revlon ColorStay™, Revlon PhotoReady™, Super Lustrous™ and Ultra HD™.

About Born This Way Foundation:

Led by Lady Gaga and her mother Cynthia Germanotta, Born This Way Foundation was founded in 2012 to support the wellness of young people and empower them to create a kinder and braver world. To achieve these goals, Born This Way Foundation leverages rigorous academic research and authentic partnerships in order to provide young people with kinder communities, improved mental health resources, and more positive environments – online and offline. Learn more at: https://bornthisway.foundation

About From One Hand to AnOTHER

From One Hand To AnOTHER Inc. (FOHTA), is a 501C3 Not for Profit Organization that was established by Pharrell Williams in 2008 in his hometown of Virginia Beach, Virginia. FOHTA began its community outreach with a school supply giveaway, and over the last 9 years it has grown into a six-week summer camp program that reaches over 1,000 predominately at-risk and low-income students in grades two through eight. Our mission is “To change the world one kid at a time by providing them the tools and resources to meet their unique potential.” – Pharrell

FOHTA’s vision is to expand educational opportunities to empower our participants through fun, project- based learning; while inspiring curiosity and increasing their enthusiasm for learning. For more information, please visit FOHTA.org.

About The Trevor Project

The Trevor Project is the leading and only accredited national organization providing crisis intervention and suicide prevention services for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and questioning (LGBTQ) young people under the age of 25, and provides a wealth of educational resources for youth-serving adults. For more information please visit http://www.thetrevorproject.org/

About The Women’s Heart Alliance:

The Women’s Heart Alliance (WHA) was formed to raise awareness, encourage action and drive new research to fight women’s heart disease. It’s a unique collaboration between two of America’s leading medical institutions—the Barbra Streisand Women’s Heart Center at Cedars-Sinai Heart Institute and the Ronald O. Perelman Heart Institute at NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital/Weill Cornell Medical Center—and two major philanthropists and leaders in business and entertainment, Barbra Streisand and Ronald O. Perelman. Learn more at www.womensheartalliance.org, and on Facebook @Womens Heart Alliance, Twitter @WHA and Instagram @womensheartalliance.

FPWA Appoints Emily Miles To Chief Program And Policy Officer

Miles to Work with Stakeholders in the Community and Human Services Sector Efforts to Increase Upward Mobility for New Yorkers

Press Release – Thursday, February 23, 2017 (New York, NY) – Non-profit sector leader Emily Miles has been appointed Chief Program and Policy Officer at FPWA, one of New York’s leading non-profit organizations aimed at alleviating poverty and advancing upward mobility. As Chief Program and Policy Officer, Miles will lead the development, implementation and evaluation of all policy, advocacy and programmatic activity working with multiple stakeholders in the community and human services sector. Miles will provide strategic programmatic leadership to ensure FPWA’s policy agenda, programs and related initiatives align with the agency’s mission to benefit New Yorkers in need and member agencies that serve them.

According to Jennifer Jones Austin, the CEO and Executive Director of FPWA: “We are thrilled to be able to draw from within our ranks to promote an exceptional talent. Emily brings a wealth of policy experience to this position after having successfully led several campaigns and initiatives that continue to drive FPWA forward to ensure the promise of opportunity can be realized.”

“I am excited to be taking on this new role at a critical time for our city and country,” said Miles. “I look forward to continuing to strengthen and advance FPWA’s work to promote opportunities for upward mobility to all New Yorkers in partnership with the FPWA team, our member agencies, and our allies across the state.”

Miles’ leadership at FPWA has evolved over a period of four years where prior to her promotion, she was the Director of Policy, Advocacy and Research, and oversaw the development and implementation of FPWA’s policy agenda. In this position, Miles played a lead role in the development of several campaigns and initiatives focused on increasing economic equity across New York City and State, including the launch of #15andFunding and Restore Opportunity Now campaigns aimed at increasing wages and funding for the human services sector, as well as playing a lead role in releasing a joint study with UJA Federation of New York and Catholic Charities focusing on the expansion and implementation of key anti-poverty policies. In 2015, Miles was honored to be named a Next Generation Leader by the Human Services Council and a Top 40 Under 40 Rising Star by New York Nonprofit Media.

Prior to joining FPWA, Miles worked in the Obama Administration in the Office of the Vice President and in the U.S. Department of Education, managing gender-based violence initiatives; coordinating federal inter-agency workgroup activities targeted at reducing violence against women and girls; and organizing broad-based support for the reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA).

Miles also brings to FPWA a strong background in education, having started her career as a public middle school teacher, working in both Georgia and Maine as a teacher and gifted and talented program coordinator.

About FPWA

FPWA is an anti-poverty, policy, and advocacy nonprofit with a membership network of nearly 180 human-service and faith-based organizations. FPWA has been a prominent force in New York City’s social services system for more than 95 years, advocating for fair public policies, collaborating with partner agencies, and growing its community-based membership network to meet the needs of New Yorkers. Each year, FPWA helps close to 1.5 million New Yorkers move up the economic ladder. Visit us at www.fpwa.org and follow us on Facebook and Twitter.

The Hadassah Foundation Awards $330,000 in Grants to Israeli Organizations to Empower Girls and Women in Israel

Press Release – (NEW YORK, NY – FEBRUARY 22, 2017) – The Hadassah Foundation, which invests in social change to empower women and girls in Israel and the United States, has awarded $330,000 in grants to 21 Israeli organizations that enhance economic opportunities for women in Israel, it was announced by Julie Morris, chair of Hadassah Foundation.

Founded in 1998 by Hadassah, the Women’s Zionist Organization of America, Inc. (HWZOA), the Hadassah Foundation is a philanthropic pioneer in the fields of improving economic security for low-income Israeli women and developing leadership and self-esteem programs for adolescent Jewish girls and young women in the United States. In 2017, the Foundation is marking its “Chai” (18) anniversary and more than $7.6 million in grants to over 90 nonprofit organizations, devoted to improving the lives the girls and women in the United States and Israel.

In 2016, the Foundation made grants totaling $545,000—it awarded $365,000 to 21 Israeli organizations which work to support Israeli women from all walks of life, as well as $180,000 to six organizations in the United States as part of its initiative to strengthen leadership development opportunities for young Jewish women in Israel and the United States.

Julie Morris, chair of the Foundation, states, “Our 2017 grantees are striving to make Israel a more equitable place for women, and lifting motivated women out of poverty.”

In addition to two first-time grantees, the Foundation also awarded “sustaining” grants for the fifth consecutive year. These grants provide general operating support to four long-term grantees that have played a particularly critical role in promoting the economic security of women in Israel.

The 2017 grants were awarded to the following organizations:

Legal Aid

  • Bar Ilan University, The Ruth and Emanuel Rackman Center, $5,000 (Sustaining Grant): Provides legal counsel to women seeking a divorce. It works proactively to improve policy and practice by educating future family lawyers to safeguard women’s rights and advocating for changes in Israeli family law.
  • Center for Women’s Justice, $5,000 (Sustaining Grant): Pursues precedent-setting litigation and legal advocacy on behalf of women who have suffered unjust treatment, discrimination, or whose basic human rights have been infringed upon when seeking a divorce.
  • Itach-Maaki—Women Lawyers for Social Justice, $5,000 (Sustaining Grant): Public interest law organization working on behalf of low-income Israeli women. Itach-Makki helps women file employment-related lawsuits and form peer support groups and educates the public about issues affecting women.

Policy Education and Coalition Building

  • Adva, $10,000: For the Negev Forum of Women Business Leaders, which aims to increase the economic power of Bedouin and Jewish businesswomen from more than 20 Negev communities, who will receive training and mentoring so they can plan and implement civic initiatives that increase women’s economic opportunities.
  • Isha L’Isha, $15,000:  For an advocacy project that has two goals: to change laws and policies so as to increase the participation and success rate of women-owned businesses in tenders issued by the Haifa Municipality, and to advocate for the direct employment of women in custodial jobs for that municipality, rather than employing them as contractors through an outside employment agency, as is currently the case.
  • New Israel Fund, Shatil, $15,000:  For the Advancing the Rights of Women in Public Housing program, which aims to protect the rights of single mothers in public housing—an estimated 77% of the families in public housing are headed by single women—and expand eligibility criteria so that more such families can get housing support.
  • Yedid, $8,000: For the Single Mothers for Change, which strives to provide greater economic security for low-income single mothers. Working with a network of more than 800 low-income single female parents, YEDID will educate and advocate for public policies to improve the economic security of single parents and their children, focusing specifically on Israel’s child-support law.

Workplace Discrimination

  • The Association of Rape Crisis Centers in Israel, $25,000: For the Enhancing Security in the Workplace project, which will enable it to implement an anti-sexual harassment code at several leading Israeli employers, with the goal of making this a model program for other Israeli workplaces.
  • Merchavim, $15,000:  For the Arab Teacher Integration in Jewish Schools Initiative, which places Arab Israelis trained as teachers—the vast majority of whom are female—in Jewish Israeli schools. This program aims to reduce the high level of unemployment of female teachers in the Arab sector, address a shortage of teachers in Jewish Israeli schools, and promote intergroup relations.

Employment Conditions of Low-Income Women

  • Kav LaOved—Worker’s Hotline, $20,000:  For a legal assistance and advocacy program to improve working conditions of 60,000 migrant caregivers working in Israel, 80% of whom are women and the vast majority of whom are working under problematic conditions.
  • Workers’ Advice Center—Ma’an, $25,000:  For the Arab Women in Agriculture program, which enables Arab Israeli women who live in the periphery to take on agricultural work under improved circumstances—including guaranteed (and properly documented) pay at at least the legal minimum wage.

Asset Building

  • Economic Empowerment for Women, $5,000 (Sustaining Grant):  For the promotion of asset development among low-income women who manage microenterprises, based on the U.S. model of the Individual Development Account.
  • Project Kesher Israel, $12,000:  For financial training to women from the former Soviet Union, who, due to language and cultural issues, do not know how to manage their finances or work with Israeli financial institutions.

Business Training & Entrepreneurship

  • Microfy, $18,000:  For a women’s business forum for nascent business owners from South Tel Aviv.
  • PresenTense, $24,000:  For the Yazamiot Venture Accelerator, an eight-month program that will train 15-20 ultra-Orthodox women entrepreneurs to launch small or social businesses, or grow existing ones.

Vocational Training and Job Placement

  • The Israel Women’s Network, $25,000:  For the Towards Integrating Women in the Male Trades project, which aims to close the gender gap which exists in the Israeli workforce in general, and in mid-level professional trades in particular, by integrating women into positions typically defined as “male trades,” such as electricians, carpenters, drivers, and more.
  • Machshava Tova, $20,000:  For a program that trains low-income women in app (application) development, so they can gain a foothold in the rapidly developing mobile telephone data field.
  • The National Council of Jewish Women Research Institute for Innovation in Education at Hebrew University, $25,000:  For the Training Ethiopian Women for the Workforce as Educators in the Pre-School Sector program, which will enable these women to bring much-needed income into their lower-income homes.
  • Tishreen, $25,000:  For a job readiness program for Arab Israeli women from the Southern Triangle region.
  • Women’s Spirit, $5,000:  For the Seeds of Growth program, which will provide 400 women victims of violence of prime working age (20-60) with tools and support to reintegrate successfully in the employment world and achieve financial independence.

Leadership Development

  • WEPOWER, $25,000:  For a program to support women completing their first five-year term as city council members to run for a second term, since, traditionally, half of such women do not run for second term.

About The Hadassah Foundation

The Hadassah Foundation, founded in 1998 by Hadassah, the Women’s Zionist Organization of America, Inc. (HWZOA) is an investor in social change to empower girls and women in Israel and the United States. For more information, visit www.hadassahfoundation.org.

Hadassah, the Women’s Zionist Organization of America, Inc. (HWZOA) is the largest Jewish women’s organization in the United States. With 330,000 members, associates and supporters Hadassah brings Jewish women together to effect change and advocate on critical issues such as medical care and research, women’s empowerment, and the security of Israel. Through the Hadassah Medical Organization’s two hospitals, the world-renowned trauma center and the leading research facility in Jerusalem, Hadassah supports the delivery of exemplary patient care to over a million people every year. HMO serves without regard to race, religion or nationality and earned a Nobel Peace Prize Nomination in 2005 for building “bridges to peace” through equality in medical treatment. For more information, visit www.hadassah.org.

Surge In Philanthropy From African-Americans As Demographics Shift

Press Release – WASHINGTON D.C. – As the ethnic makeup of America changes, the face of philanthropy is changing dramatically. The role of African-Americans in philanthropy is not only keeping pace but exceeding expectations when it comes to giving.

This will be one of the major topics of exploration in this year’s Non-Profit Thursdays in Washington, D.C. The Beltway gathering on Thursday, March 2 brings together an exclusive group of top Executive Directors and CEO’s of America’s $3 million-dollar a year plus charitable organizations to explore how to successfully fund-raise based upon the latest data.

Bank of America – Merrill Lynch is the sponsor of Non-Profit Thursdays, which was created by Philanthropic expert M. Gasby Brown , CEO and Co-Founder of the newly created Bridge Philanthropic Consulting (BPC), the nation’s largest full service African-American owned fundraising firm.

The rise of an African American/Women owned firm like BPC shows how the realities of philanthropy have truly changed,” says Reggie Van Lee, a celebrated philanthropist, Fortune 1000 former executive and winner of New York University’s C. Walter Nichols Award for community service. “Looking at the Study, I am excited to see the hard data matching what we have observed in the Black community for many years.

Bridge Philanthropic Consulting’s subject for Non-Profit Thursday is “The 2016 U.S. Trust Study of High Net Worth Philanthropy Unpacked”: ‘How to use it to raise money!'” – but a special emphasis will be on the new data regarding African-American High Net Worth Giving and a discussion on High Net Worth Philanthropy in general with special guest Erin Hogan, Vice President, U.S. Trust.

“The 2016 U.S. Trust and the Lilly Family School of Philanthropy provide a profile of High Net Worth philanthropy in the African American community. This a first and we welcome the information!” says M. Gasby Brown, CEO and co-founder of Bridge Philanthropic Consulting. Non-profit heads will receive expert advice on how to work with the unique trends and challenges faced by charities seeking major gifts. Brown is also a faculty member of the renowned The Fund Raising School at Indiana University’s Lilly Family School of Philanthropy.

Overall, there are a lot of reasons for optimism for non-profits as U.S. demographics shift. As far back as 2003 it has been documented that African-American households give 25% more of their discretionary income to philanthropic activities than Whites and the “2016 U.S. Trust Study of High Net Worth Philanthropy” suggests that those figures increase as community members join the ranks of the wealthy.

There is also an unbroken legacy in the Black church of giving tithes and offerings that has instilled a sense of organic philanthropy in the African American community. African-Americans who attend church are 25% more likely to give than their peers who don’t attend church services. “I became involved in philanthropy through a family tradition that goes back to the church,” says Dwayne Ashley, the other Co-Founder and President of Bridge Philanthropic Consulting, “my great grandmother was a mid-wife. When families could not pay her they often gave her portions of their land which she in turn donated to create one of first black schools in Heflin, Louisiana. Eventually, the school became a church where generations of my family and neighbors attend to this day.”

But, while black donors are generous, they do have separate traditions surrounding giving than other ethnic groups. For instance, African-Americans indicated in the “2016 U.S. Trust Study of High Net Worth Philanthropy” that they are significantly more likely to give at any level if their families have a history of giving. Also, while white donors tend to look to wealth management experts for advice in giving, donations in the African-American community tend to begin with counsel from religious organizations. Peers of givers tend to play a higher role in decision making among African-American philanthropists, as well.

These and other topics connected to the rising tide of African-American philanthropists will be explored at Non-Profit Thursdays on March 2 and promise a snapshot of the field of philanthropy that is shifting even as the ethnic makeup of America becomes more diverse.

The 12- page survey was randomly distributed to 20,000 households in High Net Worth areas of the U.S. Results were based on a nationwide sample of 1400 households worth $1 million or more (excluding the value of their home) and /or a household income of $200,00 or more.

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