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MySocialGoodNews is dedicated to sharing news about
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Crowdfunding for Social Good

Devin D. Thorpe

Devin Thorpe

Monthly Archives: October 2017

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Northern NJ Community Foundation Awards Grants for Armenian Genocide Education and Higher Ed Scholarship

Press Release – (Englewood, New Jersey; October 30, 2017) — The Northern New Jersey Community Foundation (NNJCF) announces the award of $3,000 in grants from donor advised funds to nonprofit organizations. The awards were made from the NNJCF’s Andrea Tilbian Halejian Memorial Fund and The Class of 1964 Ralph Gregg Memorial Scholarship Fund. The NNJCF, a not-for-profit 501(c)3 organization based in Englewood, New Jersey, focuses primarily on education, public health, civic engagement, arts, philanthropy, and the environment.

Andrea Tilbian Halejian Memorial Fund

The NNJCF’s Andrea Tilbian Halejian Memorial Fund awarded a $2,000 grant to the Armenian General Benevolent Union (AGBU). This Fund remembers Wyckoff resident Andrea Tilbian Halejian and contributes to qualified charitable organizations she supported. Andrea Tilbian Halejian, her family and many of their friends cared for Armenian efforts on local, national and international levels.

The grant award to the AGBU will support The Promise to Educate Campaign to raise awareness about the Armenian Genocide. The program expands genocide prevention through education and provides curriculum materials to teachers and students in schools across the United States about the Armenian Genocide. For more than 110 years, the AGBU has promoted and enhanced the global Armenian nation through educational, cultural, and humanitarian initiatives.

The Class of 1964 Ralph Gregg Memorial Scholarship

The NNJCF’s Class of 1964 Ralph Gregg Memorial Scholarship Fund memorializes Leonia High School 1964 classmate Ralph Gregg. A $1,000 scholarship award is given to a Leonia High School senior seeking to further his or her education, who is also a member of an athletic team, holds a B grade point average or better, and demonstrates some financial need.

The 2017 recipient, Kyle Russell of Leonia, New Jersey, is attending the New Jersey Institute of Technology and pursuing studies in engineering. Highlights of his athletic record at Leonia High School included captain of the First Team All Soccer League; captain of the track team with most valuable player, PV school record, and third in state; and a member of the basketball team.

Russell was also active in school serving in the National Honor Society, tutoring math to students and adults, participating in Peer Leadership and the Leonia High School Open House, and being named Mr. Senior and to the Homecoming court. His volunteer activities spanned working with the Leonia Recreation Camp Counselor in Training program, St. John the Evangelist Church’s fundraising events, the Sport Boosters’ Christmas Tree sales, and the Art Restoration bingo fundraiser, among others.

NNJCF Philanthropic Services

The NNJCF’s comprehensive menu of philanthropic services, including donor-advised funds, tax-saving annuities, and trust options, addresses peoples’ charitable interests with a range of options. The NNJCF continually asks: What can we do together that we can’t do alone?

“Through the offering of donor-advised funds, NNJCF helps contributors of all ages give towards issues in our region they care about the most. This is a win-win situation: the donor becomes an active participant in the distribution of particular grants, and our communities receive the benefit of funds for important needs and services. Funds can be established in any area of interest — arts, education, environment, public health, youth development, animal welfare, and many others,” said Danielle De Laurentis, Associate Director, NNJCF.

For further information about the NNJCF, the donor advised funds, or to set up a charitable fund, call 201-568-5608 or send an e-mail to nnjcf@nnjcf.org.

About NNJCF

The Northern New Jersey Community Foundation (NNJCF), a not-for-profit 501(c) 3 organization based in Englewood, New Jersey, focuses primarily on education, public health, civic engagement, environment, and the arts. NNJCF works with local governments, school districts, businesses, non-profit organizations, and citizen groups in Northern New Jersey to improve community life. Foundation partners identify and resolve regional problems and opportunities by talking and learning from each other and by sharing ideas, best practices, services, and resources.

For more information, visit http://www.nnjcf.org, send an email to nnjcf@nnjcf.org, or call (201) 568-5608. Follow the NNJCF on Facebook at Northern NJ Community Foundation/ArtsBergen and Twitter @NNJCF.


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Young Impact Leaders Win Nudge Global Impact Award In The Peace Palace, The Hague

Nudge founder Jan van Betten: “Focusing even more on impact, we aim to change the lives of 1 billion people.”

Press Release – Amsterdam, the Netherlands, 31 October 2017 – Last Friday at the Nudge Summit, the winners of the Nudge Global Impact Award 2017 have been announced. Emily Kennedy (Youth in Agriculture Initiative, Uganda), Héctor García Montemayor (Heineken, Mexico) and Michiel de Koning (Heroes & Friends, the Netherlands) won this global recognition for their achievements in creating the biggest impact on people’s lives and livelihood. The winners are alumni of the Nudge Global Impact Challenge, a yearly development programme in leadership, sustainability and impact. The VU University of Amsterdam, strategic partner of the Challenge, is responsible for measuring and monitoring the impact created by the Award nominees. At the Summit, a jury consisting of Teresa Fogelberg (Global Reporting Initiative), Philipp Pattberg (VU University Amsterdam), Joyeeta Gupta (University of Amsterdam) and Ralien Bekkers (NDC partnership, Washington) chose the three winners from six finalists.

Nudge founder Jan van Betten: “The Nudge Global Impact Award is a great boost and recognition for our participants to realise their plans and create the impact they envision. With our Nudge projects, we aim to change the lives of a billion people, together with our partners, supporters, and of course the young women and men who are future leaders in sustainability. The Nudge Global Impact Challenge will help them make the change for a better world.”

This year’s Nudge Global Impact Challenge winners are Erin Groot-Hermsen (Unilever), Anacelle Bautista (PeoplePods Dormitories, Philippines, wild card participant) and Sabine Oudt (ABN AMRO). All 90 participants from 30 global organisations such as Unilever, Heineken, Danone, Ferrero, Aegon, FrieslandCampina, Philips and ABN AMRO were challenged to provide a tangible plan that generates global sustainable impact. The three Challenge winners will join Reward Partner Ferrero in Georgia (Eurasia) in May 2018 and use their leadership skills to contribute to a sustainable mission.

Call to action

Nudge believes that the key to a sustainable future lies with young leadership. Nudge therefore calls upon companies from all over the world to join the Nudge Global Impact Challenge and support the participation of young professionals. The Support Partners contribute to bringing together the best young professionals from all over the world and giving them the knowledge, tools and confidence to implement positive and innovative change. Joining the Nudge Global Impact Challenge can be arranged through the Nudge website.

About Nudge

Founded in 2010, Nudge strives towards a sustainable society. Nudge is a social enterprise and B Corp based in The Netherlands. Nudge connects people and organisations with its online platform in order to achieve grassroots initiatives that bring a positive and long lasting change in our society. By facilitating bottom-up initiatives, Nudge offers perspectives for action that are accessible to everyone. Nudge invites everyone to take action and make a positive contribution to society. Over 60,000 people and 300 organisations in The Netherlands are members of the Nudge community and this number is increasing daily.


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Citizenship Efforts – A Force For Good And A Force For Growth

P&G Highlights Contributions to Society, the Community and the Environment in the 2017 Citizenship Report

Press Release – CINCINNATI, October 31, 2017 – The Procter & Gamble Company (NYSE:PG) today released its 2017 Citizenship Report, detailing progress in improving social conditions for those in need, advancing Diversity & Inclusion, building a world free from gender bias inside and outside the Company and reducing its environmental footprint. As P&G operates in about 70 countries and serves nearly 5 billion people, the Company leverages its brands and people to make the world a better place through its Citizenship efforts.

“Our Citizenship efforts are a win-win opportunity for our business, for our communities, and, more broadly, for our society,” said David Taylor, P&G’s Chairman of the Board, President and Chief Executive Officer. “Consumers care about the company behind the brands they purchase and use. They want to know that the products they are buying come from a trusted source, and we’re working to build on that trust every single day.”

P&G published a sustainability report annually since 1999 but expanded it beginning in 2016 to include a more comprehensive overview of the Company’s citizenship priorities. From supporting more than 20 disasters with product donations and services, to sparking conversations about gender and racial bias, to pioneering the world’s first recyclable shampoo bottle made with beach plastic, the stories and examples in P&G’s 2017 Citizenship report demonstrate that innovative citizenship can have significant positive impact on the world and on its business.

Highlights of the P&G 2017 Citizenship Report include:

  • Community Impact: P&G delivered its 12 billionth liter of clean drinking water in 2017 through the P&G’s Children’s Safe Drinking Water Program, and aims to deliver 15 billion by 2020. P&G’s Pampers brand partnered with Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) nurses to design and introduce the first diaper for preemies – the Pampers Preemie Swaddlers Size P-3 diaper. In addition, P&G provided support in response to more than 20 natural disasters around the world.
  • Diversity & Inclusion: P&G joined the CEO Action for Diversity & Inclusion, the largest CEO-driven business commitment to advance diversity and inclusion in the workplace. P&G also sponsored the 37th National Veterans Wheelchair Games in its hometown of Cincinnati, Ohio, to empower more than 550 veterans to live more active and healthy lives.
  • Gender Equality: In conjunction with International Women’s Day 2017, P&G launched the #WeSeeEqual video, which has been viewed millions of times in 180 countries. P&G joined the ANA #SeeHer movement and the UN Women Unstereotype Alliance to focus on eliminating stereotypes and accurately portraying women and girls in advertising. Over the last fiscal year, P&G spent more than $1 billion with women-owned businesses in the United States through its Supplier Diversity program, expanding the program into all five global regions.
  • Environmental Responsibility: P&G opened a biomass facility in Albany, Ga., that produces 100 percent of the steam and a significant portion of the total energy used to make Bounty and Charmin products at that manufacturing plant, an achievement that will help reach the Company’s goal of using 30 percent renewable energy by 2020. P&G scientists invented a technology that has the potential to revolutionize the plastics recycling industry allowing polypropylene plastics to be recycled into nearly new condition. As part of P&G’s commitment to send zero manufacturing waste to landfill from all its global manufacturing sites by 2020, more than 70 percent of its sites in 23 countries have now achieved this status.

The Executive Summary of the report, as well as a detailed version, can be viewed here.

About Procter & Gamble

P&G serves consumers around the world with one of the strongest portfolios of trusted, quality, leadership brands, including Always®, Ambi Pur®, Ariel®, Bounty®, Charmin®, Crest®, Dawn®, Downy®, Fairy®, Febreze®, Gain®, Gillette®, Head & Shoulders®, Lenor®, Olay®, Oral-B®, Pampers®, Pantene®, SK-II®, Tide®, Vicks®, and Whisper®. The P&G community includes operations in approximately 70 countries worldwide. Please visit http://www.pg.com for the latest news and information about P&G and its brands.


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SBP and Chase Designate Mortgage-Free Home for Military Family in Superstorm Sandy Impacted Community

Public call for nominations to award worthy veteran family home leading up to fifth anniversary of Superstorm Sandy

Press Release – Egg Harbor, NJ October 30, 2017 – On the heels of the fifth anniversary of Superstorm Sandy, SBP, a non-profit that rebuilds homes efficiently after disasters, announced an open call for nominations to award a mortgage-free home, courtesy of JPMorgan Chase & Co., to a military veteran family in a community impacted by Sandy.

Now through December 31, applications will be accepted and reviewed by SBP to identify a military veteran family to connect to the Chase home located in Egg Harbor. Any veteran can apply at: bit.ly/VetsHomeNJ.

Speaking about the program, SBP Co-Founder and CEO, Zack Rosenburg said, “SBP is acutely aware that disasters do not end after the debris has been picked up. Five years after Superstorm Sandy, much progress has been made, but there remain thousands of families in communities across this region that have yet to fully recapture the safety and security lost to the 2012 storm. In partnering with JPMorgan Chase to renovate and a home to a deserving U.S. military veteran, we are proud to be helping Egg Harbor and the Jersey Shore community in taking one more step toward being whole again.”

“We’re honored to be able to assist a worthy veteran family move into a home of their own as we head towards Veterans Day and the anniversary of a storm that took homes from so many,” said Ross A. Brown, Head of Military and Veterans Affairs at JPMorgan Chase. “We know that key to creating stronger and healthier communities is empowering people to secure their own financial stability.”

Chase has donated more than 900 homes to veteran families as part of its 1,000 Home Awards Program started in 2011. The firm has also offered aid in the communities it serves including waiving customer late fees and contributing $1 million donations to nonprofit organizations following the recent hurricanes in Texas, Florida, Puerto Rico and the Caribbean.

A national organization, with operations across seven states, SBP has been active following Hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria. In Texas, SBP has opened an office in Houston, out of which it will rebuild homes, and train other organizations to utilize its proven effective model. In Florida communities impacted by Irma, SBP staffers are providing post-disaster training to impacted homeowners to help them navigate the FEMA assistance process, and avoid contractor fraud. SBP has also deployed AmeriCorps members to San Juan, Puerto Rico to provide logistics and warehouse management support, in order to speed the distribution of humanitarian aid and supplies.

About SBP

SBP’s mission is to shrink time between disaster and recovery. Since its founding in 2006 in St. Bernard Parish, Louisiana following the devastation wrought by Hurricane Katrina, SBP has rebuilt homes for more than 1,300 families with the help of 180,000 volunteers in New Orleans; Joplin, MO; Staten Island, NY; Rockaway, NY; Monmouth and Ocean Counties, NJ; San Marcos, TX; Columbia, SC; White Sulphur Springs, WV; and Baton Rouge, LA.

SBP’s model is enhanced by AmeriCorps, which provides 320 members annually to manage worksites and clients, and train the organization’s volunteers nationally.

SBP shrinks time between disaster and recovery via five interventions:

  1. Rebuild homes quickly after disasters by mobilizing private sector innovations and assigning a single point of contact to make the home rebuilding process faster and more predictable.
  2. Share rebuilding innovations with other rebuilding organizations to allow for efficient, predictable recovery on a national scale.
  3. Prepare home and business owners prior to and following disaster with specific steps to mitigate risk and improve resilience.
  4. Advise policy makers immediately after a disaster so they can deploy federal dollars sooner, and in a way that empowers an efficient recovery.
  5. Advocate for the reform of disaster recovery strategies in the U.S. to improve the predictability and speed of recovery.

To learn more, visit www.SBPUSA.org and like/follow on Facebook & Twitter @SBPUSA

About JPMorgan Chase & Co

JPMorgan Chase & Co. is a leading global financial services firm with assets of $2.6 trillion and operations worldwide. JPMorgan Chase has supported our veterans since before World War I. The Office of Military and Veterans Affairs (MVA), started in 2011, has hired more than 12,000 veterans and facilitated more than 400,000 veteran hires through the Veteran Jobs Mission coalition; awarded more than 900 mortgage-free homes to military families in need; helped 7,700 veterans and military spouses complete 10,500 career certifications through Veterans Career Transition Program at the Institute for Veterans and Military Families, which was co-founded and is supported by JPMorgan Chase and Syracuse University. Learn more at: www.jpmorganchase.com/veterans


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Cuebiq Launches Data for Good Initiative, Collaborates with MIT and 20+ Universities and Nonprofits Worldwide

Cuebiq’s new initiative helps researchers identify patterns to improve quality of life in underserved communities, during natural disasters and to develop smart cities

Press Release – New York – Leading location intelligence company Cuebiq has launched its Data for Good initiative, in which the company shares its anonymous location data with researchers at top universities and nonprofit organizations to drive innovation for causes such as improving quality of life in underserved communities, natural disaster response, and smart city development. MIT is among the first to join Cuebiq in its initiative.

MIT Media Lab Human Dynamics Group and Changing Places Group are using Cuebiq’s location data for multiple projects that apply big data and mobile location intelligence to identify areas of opportunity to help cities and their citizens. MIT Media Lab is applying Cuebiq’s high precision mobile location data on top of city data to identify and address pressing issues such as the impact of economic segregation on the development of neighborhoods and how certain establishments and businesses affect the nature and development of city areas. By studying in which places people of different economic and social backgrounds come together within a city, MIT Media Lab is able to understand which establishments and businesses are more effective than others in making a neighborhood less segregated and contribute to lowering social inequality.

“Data is transforming how we observe and understand our world. With all of today’s technology, vast scales of high quality data are readily available and can be analyzed to unlock new insights that can enhance and improve our way of life,” said MIT Professor Sandy Pentland, who also serves on the Board of Directors of the Global Partnership for Sustainable Development Data. “We are excited to be working with Cuebiq and using their rich location data to help unlock new findings that were not previously accessible to us.”

In addition to MIT, Cuebiq is also working with over 20 other universities and nonprofits globally as part of its Data for Good initiative. Among these is Ohio State University, which recently used Cuebiq’s location data in its effort to improve city planning and optimize transportation. University of Washington is also working with Cuebiq, using its location data for new research that aims to understand large-scale mobility patterns from before to during and after Hurricane Harvey.

Cuebiq is also working with companies like GasBuddy to help people identify gas station locations during times of natural disaster. The companies recently worked together to help those in Florida prepare for Hurricane Irma. Cuebiq provided GasBuddy hourly updates on dwell times at gas stations across Florida and neighboring states for the length of the emergency, which allowed GasBuddy to assess the wait times at specific locations.

Other initiatives currently underway for Data for Good involve medical planning, in which researchers are creating data models designed to track the spread of diseases.

“We are thrilled to be working alongside MIT and others in the scientific community for our Data for Good initiative. At Cuebiq, we are passionate about finding opportunities to use our knowledge and abilities to help others throughout the world,” said Antonio Tomarchio, CEO, Cuebiq. “Location data can be a powerful resource in many fields, and can provide incredible learnings. Our hope is that through this initiative, our data can help to spark ideas and test out initiatives to ensure efforts are meeting needs.”

About MIT Media Lab

The MIT Media Lab transcends known boundaries and disciplines by actively promoting a unique, antidisciplinary culture that emboldens unconventional mixing and matching of seemingly disparate research areas.

About Cuebiq

Cuebiq is a next generation location intelligence company, leveraging the largest database of accurate and precise location data in the U.S. Its leading data intelligence platform analyzes location patterns of 61 million monthly active U.S. smartphone users on over 180 mobile apps, allowing businesses to glean actionable insights about real-world consumer behaviors and trends. Cuebiq provides clients geo-behavioral audiences for cross-platform ad targeting, the industry’s only SaaS based real-time campaign optimization and footfall attribution tools, and offline location analytics. Cuebiq does not collect any personally identifiable information. Its privacy-sensitive methodology has earned the company membership status with the Network Advertising Initiative (NAI), the leading self-regulatory industry association dedicated to responsible data collection and its use for digital advertising. Cuebiq is headquartered in New York with offices in San Francisco, Chicago, Italy and China.

Follow us on Twitter at twitter.com/Cuebiq
Follow us on LinkedIn at linkedin.com/company/cuebiq


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AirFox Raises $15 Million in Successful ICO, Brings New Mobile Banking Solutions to Emerging Markets

AirFox will use the funds to develop a new mobile system for micro-financing.

The AirToken blockchain unlocks mobile access by connecting mobile airtime sponsors (advertisers and lenders) to prepaid mobile subscribers in emerging markets. (Photo: Business Wire)

Press Release – October 10, 2017 09:30 AM Eastern Daylight Time – BOSTON–(BUSINESS WIREAirFox, the company making mobile internet more affordable for millions of people, today announced it reached its $15 million funding goal and closed its public ICO. AirFox saw an outpouring of support in the weeks leading up to its ICO, raising $6.5 million in an impressive ICO pre-sale, and later more than $8.5 million in the public sale. In the midst of a volatile ICO market often plagued by scams and illegitimacy, AirFox stitched together a unique framework of regulations and processes in order to effectively self-regulate. More than 2,500 legitimate backers successfully contributed to fund the development of AirFox’s new blockchain consumer platform, AirToken (AIR), and its revolutionary microloans program.

The AirToken blockchain unlocks mobile access by connecting mobile airtime sponsors (advertisers and lenders) to prepaid mobile subscribers in emerging markets. AirFox’s free Browser app enables prepaid mobile customers to earn AirTokens that can be converted into mobile airtime. Users establish credit history by opting to share their device data and advertising behavior, enabling anyone with a smartphone to apply for and receive microloans in AirTokens.

By unlocking emerging markets’ dead mobile capital, the AIR project aims to provide the underserved masses with greater access to capital and affordable mobile internet. AirFox made a concerted effort to attract a large group of diverse backers committed to its mission in order to ensure the continued success of the AirToken. AIR is truly a utility token funded by the people, for the people.

“Emerging markets rely on smartphones not only as a form of connectivity, but also as the primary method of banking for most of the prepaid population,” said Amy Spurling, ex-COO & CFO of Jana and current AirFox advisor. “AirFox is going beyond just raising money; it is demonstrating at its core the power of blockchain technology and its ability help those around the world gain access to information and banking.”

“We look forward to developing AIR to its fullest extent in order to enable a new blockchain-based mobile ecosystem in the developing world,” said Victor Santos, AirFox’s Co-Founder and CEO. “Almost half of the world’s population is unable to access the internet and another 2 billion are excluded from financial and banking systems due to poor infrastructure, archaic systems and high costs. This means much of the developing world is deprived of the educational, commercial, and social benefits associated with capital and mobile access. The AirToken system provides greater access to capital at cheaper rates, expands access to mobile capital through prepaid wireless accounts, and improves the lives of those in the underserved, lower socioeconomic classes.”

In the developing world, mobile airtime (or data) functions as a currency. The success of mobile phone-based money transfer services like M-Pesa highlights the need for banking options that fit the unique needs of users in emerging markets. By incorporating blockchain technology into mobile phone-based money transferring, AirFox is adding a level of financing, security and reliability previously unachievable. Using AirFox’s Android application, thousands of quantifiable data points can be tracked and analyzed to create accurate ‘credit scores.’ These credit scores will segment users into tranches, allowing lenders and advertisers to sponsor AirTokens through an Ethereum smart-contract. Read more about how AirFox plans to turn AIR into the token of mobile internet access here.

About AirFox

Founded by ex-Googlers Victor Santos and Sara Choi in January 2016, AirFox quickly established itself as the leader in affordable data plans for U.S.-based prepaid wireless carriers. Incubated at Harvard’s Innovation Lab, AirFox is a TechStars Boston alumni and is venture backed by Project 11, Launch Capital, and NXT Ventures, among others. With its ICO funds and new blockchain consumer platform, the company is on a mission to enable unrestricted access to the internet for anyone with a prepaid smartphone. AirFox’s free Android app, AirFox Browser, enables users to earn AirTokens, a new cryptocurrency, by viewing advertisements on their devices, completing offers, and browsing the internet. AirTokens are redeemable for mobile data and, eventually, goods and services. AirFox will use the ICO funds to develop a revolutionary microloans program that enables peer-to-peer lending in AirTokens at more affordable rates. To learn more, visit www.airfox.io.


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Tiger Woods Foundation And Discovery Education Join Forces To Create Virtual Field Trip To Highlight Careers At Facebook

— New “Career Connections: Transforming Passion into Purpose at Facebook” Virtual Field Trip Transports Students to Silicon Valley to Explore Innovative Tech Careers —

Press Release – Irvine, Calif. | Silver Spring, Md. (Monday, October 30, 2017) – The Tiger Woods Foundation (TWF) and Discovery Education, the leading provider of digital education content and professional development for K-12 classrooms, are collaborating to host a new Virtual Field Trip, Career Connections: Transforming Passion into purpose at Facebook, on Tuesday, October 31, 2017 at 1:00 p.m. ET/10:00 a.m. PT. As part of TGR EDU: Explore, a joint digital initiative between TWF and Discovery Education, the Virtual Field Trip will take students to Facebook’s headquarters in Menlo Park, California where they will have the opportunity to virtually explore the high-tech powerhouse and learn more about the wide variety of jobs that exist within the company. The Virtual Field Trip features background information on careers in STEM, personal interviews with current Facebook employees, a tour of the headquarters and much more.

“In a time where careers in STEM are growing rapidly, it is important that we educate young people on the skills necessary for them to achieve future success. Career Connections: Transforming Passion into Purpose at Facebook does just that,” said Dr. Katherine Bihr, vice president of programs and education at the Tiger Woods Foundation. “Students will be exposed to a real Silicon Valley workplace and learn how to prepare for a career in this growing industry, all while fostering within them the mindset to persevere and pursue their passions.

While viewers will get a behind-the-scenes view of Facebook, the Virtual Field Trip will also take students inside TWF’s TGR Learning Lab in Anaheim, California, which served as the inspiration for TGR EDU: Explore – a free, online site available to educators, students and families worldwide. TGR EDU: Explore offers hands-on STEM and college access lessons via a dynamic digital platform that equips students with the tools and resources they need to identify their passions, develop their skills, and pursue pathways towards higher education and a promising career. The site offers a variety of immersive lessons, and expanded learning activities for middle and high school students nationwide. TGR EDU: Explore also provides virtual campus tours, training videos for educators and family discussion starters to help students explore their initial college enrollment interests.

“Discovery Education is thrilled to continue building upon the TGR EDU: Explore platform by launching the Career Connections: Transforming Passion into Purpose at Facebook Virtual Field Trip,” said Lori McFarling, senior vice president and chief marketing officer, Discovery Education. “Through this immersive virtual experience, students nationwide will see first-hand how they can use STEM skills to solve real-world problems and have the opportunity to explore the range of high-tech careers powered by STEM.”

Launched earlier this year, TGR EDU: Explore was created to make possible Tiger Woods’ vision to motivate students across the world through innovative education in STEM and college access. Through their partnership with Discovery Education, TWF’s award-winning curriculum and professional development resources are made available to students and teachers at no-cost. Together, TWF and Discovery Education seek to educate students nationwide on how to prepare for a career in STEM and equip them with the tools they need to attend college.

“As an educator, I am always looking for supplemental resources and curriculum that encourage my students to reach their potential,” said Rob Lamb, chemistry teacher at Pattonville High School in Missouri’s Pattonville School District. “The TGR EDU: Explore materials and Virtual Field Trip will help my students understand how they can best prepare for college and steer them to a successful future in STEM.”

For more information on TGR EDU: Explore or to access the online resources, visit tgreduexplore.org. Join the conversation around the Career Connections: Transforming Passion into Purpose at Facebook Virtual Field Trip on Twitter @TWFoundation and @DiscoveryEd using the hashtag #TGREDUExplore.

The Career Connections: Transforming Passion into Purpose at Facebook Virtual Field Trip is also available through Discovery Education Streaming Plus. For more information about Discovery Education’s digital content and professional development services, visit discoveryeducation.com. Stay connected with Discovery Education on social media through Facebook, follow us on Twitter at @DiscoveryEd, or find us on Instagram and Pinterest.


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Minorities Less Likely to Have Breast Reconstruction, But Not for the Reason Many Think

Penn study shows racial disparity exists even when geography, insurance are factored in

Press Release – PHILADELPHIA – Minority women are far less likely to undergo breast reconstruction than white women, even if they live in the same area and have similar insurance. The finding from a new study from the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania challenges the commonly held belief that the disparity is based on access to plastic surgeons or a patient’s insurance status. The research, which will published next month in The American Journal of Surgery, shows that even when the number of plastic surgeons in the area are the same and the patient has private insurance as opposed to public, white women are 24 percent more likely to undergo reconstruction than black women, 26 percent more likely than Asians, Pacific Islanders, and Native Americans (APINA), and 19 percent more likely than Hispanics.

“We know that insurance status and the number of plastic surgeons in a given area affect reconstruction rates, but this is the first study to look at what happens when you control for both of those, and it shows the disparity exists on racial lines alone,” said the study’s lead author Paris D. Butler, MD, MPH, an assistant professor of Plastic Surgery at Penn.

Butler and his team analyzed surgery databases from California, Florida, and New York and used data from 2008 through 2012. Combined, these three states represented 24 percent of the population of the United States according to the 2010 census. In total, they identified more than 65,000 women with breast cancer who underwent a mastectomy, then looked at who had reconstruction and who didn’t. Researchers measured the access these patients had to plastic surgeons by using a ratio of plastic surgeons per 100,000 people living in each county within the three states. They also grouped the patients by race as well as insurance status, looking at private insurance versus public – either Medicare or Medicaid.

As expected, less access led to fewer reconstructions. Insurance status was also a major factor, with about 60 percent of privately insured patients undergoing reconstruction compared to just 20 percent of those with public insurance. Those numbers represent the entire study population and are not divided by race.

However, the truly notable findings came after the researchers accounted for people living in the same area. In counties with the highest ratios of plastic surgeons per 100,000 people, white women underwent reconstruction 59 percent of the time, compared to 47 percent for Hispanic women, 42 percent for African-Americans, and 41 percent for APINA.

The disparity was even starker when insurance status entered into the equation. White women with private insurance who live in areas with the highest plastic surgeon density had reconstruction 84 percent of the time. The number drops to 65 percent among Hispanics, 60 percent among African-Americans, and 58 percent for APINA.

Even in the public insurance group, where rates were lower across the board, researchers still found the disparity. The rate for white women was 34 percent, compared to 28 percent for Hispanics, 24 percent for African-Americans, and 24 percent for APINA.

“This shows that race alone is a predictor of who is most likely to undergo reconstruction, and that this racial disparity exists independent of geography or socioeconomic status,” Butler said.

Researchers identified three key areas to address in order to close the gap. First, they point to the need for more patient outreach and education so these communities can be better advocates for themselves. Second, they believe breast oncologists and primary care physicians need to be more vigilant in referring patients to plastic surgeons to ensure women are informed of their options. Third, they say plastic surgeons need to take more ownership of this disparity.

“There are fewer plastic surgeons accepting insurance, and that’s an area we can improve,” Butler said.

Butler also says there is a need for more plastic surgeons nationally, which should help improve access for women across the country.


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First Finance Innovation Lab For Accelerating Climate Action In European Cities

  • The City Finance Lab has been launched by Climate-KIC, South Pole Group, the Global Fund for Cities Development (FMDV), CDP and the Climate Finance and Investment Centre at Imperial College Business School.
  • The City Finance Lab will support the uptake of novel finance mechanisms and tools to accelerate the move towards low carbon, climate-resilient cities.

Press Release – Milan, Italy, 30 October 2017 – The first finance innovation lab for accelerating climate action in European cities has been launched by Climate-KIC, South Pole Group, the Global Fund for Cities Development (FMDV), CDP and the Climate Finance and Investment Centre at Imperial College Business School.

The City Finance Lab will work with European cities to overcome finance barriers holding back critical climate mitigation and adaptation projects, and offer incubation support for novel financial instruments. The Lab expects to leverage USD 500 million in additional finance for climate action in cities.

Globally, municipalities will need significant additional investments – on top of business-as-usual infrastructure costs – to improve the climate-impacts and climate-resilience of their infrastructure, in particular in the transport, energy, water, waste, and building sectors. To mobilize those investments, a set of services will be needed, including: project preparation to ensure projects meet the standards of the private investors, the creation of a pipeline of creditworthy projects, and matchmaking initiatives between project leaders and investors, etc.

The City Climate Finance Leadership Alliance (CCFLA) has estimated that the additional global capital investment per annum required to ensure that urban infrastructure is low-emission and climate resilient could be as high USD 1.1 trillion.

Cities consume over two-thirds of the world’s energy and account for more than 70% of global CO2 emissions. Making infrastructure improvements in cities is critical to the global decarbonisation challenge, which requires the carbon intensity of the global economy to fall by more than 6% every year – almost 6 times faster than anything the global community has achieved so far. To date, no EU member-state has achieved a reduction of more than 2% p.a.

As well as being high emitters, cities are also highly vulnerable to climate change, prone to sea level rise, storm surges, water scarcity, flooding and heatwaves.

Drawing down the USD 1.1 trillion needed to cut global emissions and improve resilience

Less than 15% of global climate finance has reached cities, according to the World Bank. European cities are no exception in the struggle to access climate finance, and face multiple barriers to financing climate action:

  • European cities lack the capacity and expertise to identify and apply sources of climate finance; this makes it hard for them to choose the best financing instruments for climate investment
  • With EU public debt reaching 89% of EU GDP and the stringent Maastricht rules in terms of public deficit, public authorities must be creative with regards to attracting new sources of funding for their projects
  • Many cities in Eastern and Southern Europe still struggle with poor credit ratings
  • European cities struggle to create ‘bankable’ climate projects that will attract investors, due to a lack of insufficient information about future return on investment.

Until now there has been no platform focused on supporting European cities to overcome these barriers and unlock climate finance.

The City Finance Lab will help cities develop novel financial instruments and bankable climate projects by providing technical assistance through design, development, pilot preparation and scaling.

Cities and investors will be invited to submit proposals for innovative financial instruments for a place on The City Finance Lab’s incubation programme.

The Lab will be scaled up over a three-year period. Launching as Europe’s first innovation experiment for unlocking climate finance for municipalities, it will pilot its approach in Europe and then leverage its successes to roll out the programme in other countries and regions.

The first Call for Proposals is expected to be announced by (latest) June 2018. To register your interest or find out more contact Victor Gancel.

“It is Climate-KIC’s mission to support cities in accelerating their transition, for maximum climate impact,” says Victor Gancel, Low Carbon City Lab Programme Manager. “The City Finance Lab also has the potential to drive growth in climate-responsible funds, by delivering green investment opportunities for public and private investors.”

“Investments in cities are key for a successful transition to a low-carbon and climate resilient future,” says Renat Heuberger, CEO South Pole Group. “We are thrilled to co-initiate this City Finance Lab, which will incubate and accelerate innovative solutions for climate mitigation and adaptation in urban areas.”


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S&P Dow Jones Indices Debuts Carbon Metrics on Indices

The Metrics Provide a New Level of Carbon Data Transparency

Press Release – LONDON, OCT. 30, 2017: S&P Dow Jones Indices (S&PDJI), a leading index provider, is now publishing carbon metrics on the majority of its equity indices, including the S&P Global 1200, S&P 500®, Dow Jones Industrial Average® and environmentally-focused indices including S&P Global 1200 Carbon Efficient Index Family and S&P Global 1200 Fossil Fuel Free Index Family.

S&P DJI is the first index provider to publically display carbon metrics as standard alongside financial data on its indices on a monthly basis. The initiative is part of S&P DJI’s commitment to support ESG transparency enabling market participants to understand, measure and manage carbon risk.

There are three metrics currently available for the indices, using Trucost data and analysis:

  • Carbon Footprint – The metric tons of CO2e (carbon dioxide equivalent) per $1M invested against the index
  • Carbon Efficiency – The metric tons of CO2e per $1M of a company’s revenues against the index
  • Fossil Fuel Reserves – The greenhouse gas emissions that could be generated if the proven and probably fossil fuel reserves owned by constituents were burned, per $1M invested

Hannah Skeates, Senior Director, Strategy and ESG Indices, S&P Dow Jones Indices commented, “As we move towards a low and zero carbon global economy, having carbon metrics as standard is likely to become commonplace. Once market participants understand their carbon exposure, they can begin to find solutions to manage this exposure and potential risk. Whether reducing carbon exposure through a broad market low carbon strategy, or via fossil fuel divestment, S&P Dow Jones Indices has indices – and the carbon metrics to measure it. We are very excited to be at the forefront of bringing this level of transparency and information to the marketplace.”

For more information about S&P Dow Jones Indices, please visit www.spdji.com.

ABOUT S&P DOW JONES INDICES

S&P Dow Jones Indices is the largest global resource for essential index-based concepts, data and research, and home to iconic financial market indicators, such as the S&P 500® and the Dow Jones Industrial Average®. More assets are invested in products based on our indices than products based on indices from any other provider in the world. Since Charles Dow invented the first index in 1884, S&P DJI has become home to over 1,000,000 indices across the spectrum of asset classes that have helped define the way investors measure and trade the markets.

S&P Dow Jones Indices is a division of S&P Global (NYSE: SPGI), which provides essential intelligence for individuals, companies, and governments to make decisions with confidence. For more information, visit www.spdji.com.


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