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MySocialGoodNews is dedicated to sharing news about
social entrepreneurship, impact investing, philanthropy
and corporate social responsibility.

Crowdfunding for Social Good

Devin D. Thorpe

Devin Thorpe

CSR

This category includes articles about Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR), typically including donations to or other support for nonprofit organizations.

New Award Recognizes Most Effective, Efficient Nonprofits in Veteran Job Placement

Santa Monica, CA – August 26, 2013The Call of Duty Endowment today announced it has joined with Deloitte to create a unique annual Call of Duty Endowment ‘Seal of Distinction’ award program that will highlight nonprofit organizations that have proven to be the most effective and efficient at placing veterans into high quality careers.

The Call of Duty Endowment is a private nonprofit foundation that supports groups placing former service members into high quality careers and raises awareness of the value veterans bring to the civilian workplace.

Dan Goldenberg, Executive Director of the Call of Duty Endowment, said, “Our goal at the Endowment is to invest in groups that have demonstrated exceptional effectiveness at placing veterans into high quality careers.  Our new ‘Seal of Distinction’ opens the door to give the best organizations an opportunity to showcase their success and access more resources.” Recipients of the Call of Duty Endowment Seal of Distinction will receive an unrestricted grant of $30,000 with potential for more extensive restricted grants from the Call of Duty Endowment.

The call for submissions is now open and organizations may apply for the Call of Duty Endowment ‘Seal of Distinction’ through September 27, 2013 by completing the application at www.CallofDutyEndowment.org

While seeking applications from new organizations, the Endowment announced that several organizations would be designated as Original ‘Seal of Distinction’ recipients. The first of these organizations to be announced is the US Chamber Foundation in Washington, DC. The Chamber Foundation has already withstood a thorough analysis to certify their effective, efficient service to our veterans.

Eric Eversole, Executive Director of the Chamber’s Hiring Our Heroes program – one of the original Call of Duty Endowment ‘Seal of Distinction’ recipients – stated, “Since our inception in 2011, the U.S. Chamber has prudently spent our donors’ investments to create as many jobs as possible for our veterans. We are proud to receive The Call of Duty Endowment’s ‘Seal of Distinction’ as further proof that we stretch every dollar to make the biggest impact.”

Nominees for the Call of Duty Endowment ‘Seal of Distinction’ must, as a minimum:

– Be a charitable, non-profit, with 501(c)(3) status

– Have a mission that incorporates directly assisting unemployed veterans in finding jobs

– Complete our application and, should they be selected as a finalist, submit to verification

Important criteria for selection include the number of veterans placed in jobs, average cost-per-placement, and a profile of typical veterans served, among other categories.

*Note: Rules for participation can be found at www.callofdutyendowment.org.

The Call of Duty Endowment will select a slate of finalists, and will be assisted by Deloitte who is working with CODE on a pro bono basis.

“We are pleased to join with the Call of Duty Endowment in honoring these organizations that help our veterans translate their military skills and experiences into high quality careers,” said Kelvin Womack, lead client service principal for the Federal Health practice, Deloitte Consulting LLP. “Deloitte values the dedication and sacrifice of our nation’s veterans. Whether through collaboration with organizations like CODE, our recent pledge to support the President’s Joining Forces initiative, or through our IMPACT Survey research insights into job strategies for returning military veterans, Deloitte is committed to supporting the transition from military service back to civilian life.”

Global Citizens Demand Company Involvement In Natural Disaster Relief

BOSTON (August 21, 2013) – As communities around the world continue to recover from natural disasters on epic scales, citizens look to companies – not just governments or aid organizations – to provide critical relief assistance. According to the 2013 Cone Communications Disaster Relief Trend Tracker, nearly nine-in-10 (87%) global consumers believe companies must play a role in natural disaster response – in part because the majority (69%) thinks corporations are better able to effectively respond.

Providing Aid Beyond the Check

Surveying more than 10,000 citizens in 10 countries, including the United States, Canada, Brazil, the United Kingdom, Germany, France, Russia, China, India and Japan, the 2013 Cone Communications Disaster Relief Trend Tracker reveals a near-universal demand for meaningful corporate aid beyond providing funds:

  • 89% of global citizens think companies should leverage their unique assets to lend support to affected communities (such as mobile response units, in-kind donations and employee volunteers)
  • 87% wants companies to play a long-term role in relief efforts, not just immediate recovery

“It can’t be a case of ‘if’ companies contribute to natural disaster recovery efforts; it must be a question of ‘how,’” says Craig Bida, executive vice president – Social Impact,Cone Communications. “Regardless of geography, citizens are looking to companies – even more so than government agencies – to create and implement real, on-the-ground solutions to acute and urgent needs. Consumers in communities have been burned by slow reaction times or inadequate resources in past relief efforts. What our research has documented is a citizen call for help that corporations simply cannot ignore.”

Consumers Ready to Lend Hands and Hearts

Consumers stand ready to work alongside companies toward relief efforts and will reward those caring companies with a strong brand halo. More than half (54%) of global citizens say they have already joined corporate disaster relief efforts, while nine-in-10 global citizens have a more favorable impression of a company after learning that it supports disaster recovery.

Country-Specific Insights

Corporate participation in disaster relief efforts is particularly critical in China, one of the most disaster-plagued areas in the world[1]. Citizens here express a near-unanimous desire for company involvement in relief efforts (96% vs. 87% global average). They are also exceptionally primed for participation efforts, with more than three-quarters reporting they have already contributed to corporate disaster relief activities (78% vs. 54% global average).

Similarly, citizens in both India and Japan are still recovering from recent natural disasters, such as flooding in the North Indian state of Uttarakhand and the massive Fukushima earthquake in Japan. Citizens in these countries were significantly more likely to perceive companies as better equipped than government to respond to disasters (85% and 80%, respectively, vs. 69% global average).

“As natural disasters seem to increase in intensity and frequency, company involvement in relief and recovery becomes even more crucial,” Bida says. “But companies must think strategically about how to leverage their resources for the greatest impact through taking stock of resources and vetting potential partners. When lives are at stake, every dollar counts.”

As companies work to develop both immediate and long-term relief programs, Cone Communications offers the following five tips to best support efforts:

1.     Look beyond the check: Although cash donations can give disaster nonprofits a much needed monetary injection to meet urgent needs, the most effective relief efforts don’t always come in the form of dollar contributions. Companies that leverage unique assets – such as products, technology or networks – can often make significant impact when it comes to recovery and restoration efforts. Companies can also work to secure an enduring NGO partnership to ensure relief supplies can be quickly delivered across the globe.

2.     Do your due diligence: In the age of crowdsourced donations and online giving, it’s even more vital to choose nonprofit partners wisely. When initially selecting a partner, make sure the nonprofit can also make a long-term commitment to relief and rebuilding efforts and that the organization is prepared to report and communicate on the progress and impact of programs.

3.     Engage your stakeholders: Company stakeholders, including employees and consumers, often want to take part in corporate relief efforts. Companies should not only provide channels for stakeholders to donate to relief efforts, but also make short- and long-term volunteer and giving opportunities available as appropriate.

4.     Communicate efforts externally and appropriately – and don’t forget about social:No company wants to appear exploitative during a disaster. At the same time, companies that fail to communicate may be criticized for neglecting to contribute. To ensure transparency, companies should issue brief, facts-only news releases and leverage social media as a way to disperse critical fundraising and relief information during disasters.

5.     Don’t give and run: Just because a disaster is no longer in the headlines, doesn’t mean recovery is over. Although immediate relief needs are real and pressing, long-term rebuilding is a critical component of disaster efforts. Companies should be prepared to be involved for the long-haul, offering essential support for reconstruction.

BigLeap Launches First Crowd-Funding Challenge Platform for Social Good

San Francisco, CA – August 20, 2013 – BigLeap, the world’s first crowd-funding prize and reward network that allows passionate advocates to drive social change via competition-based challenges, today launched its first challenge: to make education more accessible.

BigLeap’s first challenge is championed by Professor Silvia Bunge, a neuroscience and childhood learning expert at U.C. Berkeley, and Bill Ritchie, the CEO of ThinkFun games. The challenge will give children everywhere access to free games designed to improve their brain power by helping to develop their reasoning and logic skills via simple, interactive gameplay.

“There are millions of underprivileged students out there who don’t have access to the best learning environments or tools in their schools today, and because of this gap these children are at a significant disadvantage: their reasoning and logic skills are lacking, they test lower on IQ and standardized tests and they don’t master STEM basics – all of which are key to future job success,” says Bunge. “Several years ago my team at Berkeley ran a small study that incorporated ThinkFun games into a training program for a set group of students. The study showed that playing fun, off-the-shelf reasoning and logic games in a social group for 2-3 hours a week boosted these critical skills by over 30% and even boosted IQ scores by 10 or more points. That’s huge!”

As exciting as the results of the study were, Bunge and Ritchie knew that in order to duplicate this type of after-school game program, schools would incur significant costs. Country-wide budget cuts eliminated programs like this as a viable option.

“We were fortunate to be introduced to Charlie and Victor’s new platform, BigLeap. For a school to duplicate the gameplay from the study, the cost would have been prohibitive at $200 to $300 or more for a couple of sets of games,” says Ritchie. “BigLeap will help us make these games accessible to kids across the U.S., no matter what their financial situation is. Silvia and I plan to raise $25,000 to fund a competition that will bring innovators from across the country together to develop the best game-based learning programs that can be made for free, using common household items and art supplies. We’re excited to have a platform that can help us champion this challenge.”

Challenges Create Change

“When Victor asked me to start BigLeap with him, I immediately said yes—it’s a clear opportunity to help people change the world. Incentive challenges and competitions with significant rewards or prizes have historically proven to inspire people to solve a problem and effect change,” said Charlie Crystle, Co-Founder and CEO of BigLeap. “Unfortunately raising the money for rewards has been an obstacle, so only large organizations have used incentive challenges. But by crowd-funding the prize, change-makers don’t need major sponsors anymore, just friends, family, and their social networks. Our platform will give them a powerful set of tools to get the brightest minds around the world solving important problems.”

Each challenge posted on the BigLeap platform goes through five stages:

  • Set The Target: Anyone with a passion for solving a problem (the “Champion”) kicks off a Challenge to solve the problem.
  • Raise Money: The Champion appeals to his or her network and BigLeap community members to crowd-fund a prize or reward for the Challenge.
  • Mobilize Teams: Teams from around the world or around the corner come together to solve the problem.
  • Compete: Many different teams working on a problem means increased innovation, creativity, and resources decked against it.
  • Celebrate: Breakthrough! The problem is solved, the winning team(s) are rewarded, and the world is a better place.

“We’re excited to help people around the world improve the lives of others,” said Victor Cho, co-founder, BigLeap. “Whether it’s bettering the lives of one person or one billion, we’re confident that the BigLeap platform will significantly improve the way we as a society work to improve social issues.”

Challenges of all sizes will be accepted as long as they bring meaningful improvement to someone’s life. For more information on BigLeap please visit: www.bigleap.org.

About BigLeap

BigLeap is the world’s first crowd-funding prize and reward network that allows anyone with a passion to drive social change do so through competition-based challenges. The BigLeap platform connects passionate advocates of social issues with the funding and resources needed to solve them in innovative new ways. Unlike other crowd-funding sites or traditional charities, BigLeap only distributes a reward or prize when a challenge has been successfully solved. Because contributors can opt to get their money back if a challenge isn’t solve they are effectively guaranteed that their support dollars will have an impact.

Nielsen: 50 Percent Of Global Consumers Surveyed Willing To Pay More For Goods, Services From Socially-Responsible Companies, Up From 2011

NEW YORK – Embargoed Until Aug. 6, 12:01 a.m. ET – Fifty percent of global consumers surveyed are willing to pay more for goods and services from companies that have implemented programs to give back to society, an increase of five points (45%) from 2011, according to a new study from Nielsen, a leading global provider of information and insights into what consumers watch and buy.Willingness to spend more with socially-responsible companies increased in 74 percent of the countries Nielsen measured.

Consumers Increasingly Care about Social Impact

The Nielsen Global Survey on Corporate Social Responsibility surveyed more than 29,000 Internet respondents[1] in 58 countries. The percentage of consumers willing to pay more increased among both males and females and across all age groups, with respondents under age 30 most likely to say they would spend more for goods and services from companies that give back. Among consumers ages 40-44, 50 percent agree they would pay more, up from 38 percent two years ago.

“While cause-marketing programs seem to resonate most strongly among younger respondents, the rapid change in sentiment among middle-aged consumers expands the cause opportunity for brands,” said Nic Covey, vice president of corporate social responsibility at Nielsen. “Today, brands can confidently focus purpose messaging on both younger and older consumers.” 

Geography Makes a Difference

According to Nielsen’s survey, more than two-thirds of respondents in the Philippines, Thailand, and Indonesia – and three-quarters of respondents in India – say they would pay more for goods and services from socially-responsible companies, whereas European respondents are least likely to pay extra (36%).

“In countries where skepticism toward corporate social responsibility runs high, cause-marketers face an uphill battle,” said Covey. “In these markets, especially, social impact programs must be incontestably authentic to a company’s business objectives, vision and values.” 

Consumers’ Willingness to Pay Versus What They Actually Pay

Nielsen’s information reveals that 43 percent of global respondents claim to have actually spent more on products and services from companies that have implemented programs to give back to society (just seven percent fewer than those who say they would simply be willing to pay). Consumers in Asia-Pacific are most likely to say they had spent more on products and services from socially-responsible companies (Thailand, 66%; the Philippines, 64%; Indonesia, 56%).

Several markets indicated a high willingness to pay more for products and services from companies that give back, but lower rates of experience in actually paying more – potentially indicating, according to Covey, “markets that are uniquely ripe for cause-marketing programs.” In Slovakia, for instance, 50 percent of respondents say they would be willing to spend more, but just 22 percent say they had actually done so. Similar spreads existed in Bulgaria (53 percent willing, but 31 percent who had), Peru (62 percent willing, and 42 percent who had), and Hong Kong (52 percent willing but 32 percent who had).

“Today, the question is not whether consumers care about social impact, but which ones, how much and how to appeal to them,” said Covey. “The answer isn’t necessarily a traditional cause-marketing campaign – general responsibility, sustainable innovation and purpose messaging might also engage these consumers. No matter the approach, savvy brands are figuring out how to hit this nerve.” 

About the Survey

The Nielsen Global Survey on Corporate Social Responsibility was conducted between February 18 and March 8, 2013, and polled more than 29,000 online consumers in 58 countries throughout Asia-Pacific, Europe, Latin America, the Middle East, Africa and North America. The sample has quotas based on age and sex for each country based on their Internet users, and is weighted to be representative of Internet consumers and has a maximum margin of error of ±0.6%. This Nielsen survey is based on the behavior of respondents with online access only. Internet penetration rates vary by country. Nielsen uses a minimum reporting standard of 60 percent Internet penetration or 10M online population for survey inclusion. The Nielsen Global Survey, which includes the Global Consumer Confidence Index, was established in 2005.

About Nielsen

Nielsen Holdings N.V. (NYSE: NLSN) is a global information and measurement company with leading market positions in marketing and consumer information, television and other media measurement, online intelligence and mobile measurement. Nielsen has a presence in approximately 100 countries, with headquarters in New York, USA, and Diemen, the Netherlands. For more information, visit www.nielsen.com.


[1] While an online survey methodology allows for tremendous scale and global reach, it provides a perspective on the habits of existing Internet users, not total populations. In developing markets where online penetration has not reached majority potential, audiences may be younger and more affluent than the general population of that country. Additionally, survey responses are based on claimed behavior, rather than actual metered data.

The Ad Council’s 60th Annual Public Service Award Dinner To Honor AOL’s Tim Armstrong, Seth Meyers to Host

NEW YORK, August, 5 2013 – The Ad Council, the largest producer of public service advertisements (PSAs) in the U.S., announced today that its 60th Annual Public Service Award Dinner will honor AOL Chairman & CEO Tim Armstrong, and Saturday Night Live’s Seth Meyers will host. The event will be held on November 20, 2013 at the Waldorf-Astoria Hotel in New York City.

 

Tim Armstrong will be presented with this year’s public service award in recognition of his personal and corporate commitment to philanthropy. In recent years Armstrong has led important philanthropic efforts such as the 9/11 “National Day of Service and Remembrance” and AOL’s annual Monster Help Day to inspire staff members to give back. Under his direction, AOL has supported every Ad Council public service campaign, including digital literacy and Internet safety, in addition to being a founding partner of the bullying prevention campaign. AOL’s corporate stewardship has been evident through its generous contributions of ad space across various web properties. 

 

Seth Meyers is currently the head writer for NBC’s Saturday Night Live and the anchor of “Weekend Update.” In May 2013 it was announced that Meyers will succeed Jimmy Fallon on NBC’s Late Night program in the spring of 2014. Previous hosts of the Ad Council’s dinner include Conan O’Brien, Brian Williams, Jimmy Fallon, Tina Fey and Ellen DeGeneres.

 

Attended by more than 1,200 prominent executives from the media, advertising and corporate communities, the Public Service Award Dinner recognizes the industries and individuals who support the Ad Council and its public service campaigns. The dinner will be chaired by Debra L. Lee, the Chairman & CEO of BET Networks and the recently announced Chair of the Ad Council’s Board of Directors. 

 

“As we mark the sixth decade of our annual dinner, it’s sure to be a stellar event,” said Peggy Conlon, President and CEO of the Ad Council. “We’re thrilled to honor Tim Armstrong for his commitment to using media and technology to benefit communities throughout the world, and we’re equally excited that Seth Meyers will be our emcee.  We are looking forward to a wonderful program.”

 

The Ad Council has been honoring corporate leaders for their contributions to public service since 1953. The Public Service Award Dinner is the organization’s largest fundraising event. Last year’s benefit raised an unprecedented $3.4 million to support the Ad Council’s programs and was ranked by BizBash as one of the top 100 events in New York City and one of the top three advertising events of the year.

 

The Ad Council
The Ad Council is a private, non-profit organization with a 70-year history of marshalling volunteer talent from the advertising and media industries to deliver critical messages to the American public. Having produced literally thousands of PSA campaigns addressing the most pressing social issues of the day, the Ad Council has affected, and continues to effect, tremendous positive change by raising awareness, inspiring action and saving lives. To learn more about the Ad Council and its campaigns, visit 
adcouncil.org. You can also visit facebook.com/adcouncil or follow the Ad Council on Twitter @AdCouncil.

President Bill Clinton and Chelsea Clinton visit Rwanda and see P&G Purifier of Water Packets at Work

KIGALI, Rwanda—(BUSINESS WIRE)—President Bill Clinton and Chelsea Clinton visited Kanombe school in Kigali, Rwanda to see the P&G Purifier of Water packets at work as part of Procter and Gamble’s (P&G) Clinton Global Initiative (CGI) Commitment to Action to provide clean drinking water to those who need it most. P&G continues to deliver on its commitment to save one life every hour by the year 2020 by providing 2 billion liters of clean drinking water every year.

“Let me say how grateful I am to both P&G, one of the greatest companies in the world in terms of its responsibilities to society and building into their business model lifting lives of people, and to World Vision, one of the great treasures of NGOs, and the fact that they’re doing this together means a lot to me,” said President Bill Clinton who met children who use the P&G packets to purify their water.

This visit to Rwanda follows Chelsea Clinton’s recent trip to Myanmar, where she traveled with P&G and World Vision to deliver the 6 billionth liter of clean drinking water purified by the P&G Purifier of Water packets. Rwanda is one of the countries most affected by the clean drinking water crisis, with 80 percent of diseases affecting Rwandans coming from the water they drink and 11 percent of Rwandan children dying before they turn five.

“At P&G, we want to use our innovation to make social investments that allow people everywhere to thrive,” said Allison Tummon Kamphuis, P&G Children’s Safe Drinking Water Program (CSDW) Manager. “These packets are being used all around the world to make dirty, unsafe water clean enough to drink with simple tools – a bucket, a stick, a cloth and a tiny packet. We’re honored to share this work with President Clinton and Chelsea and grateful for the work with World Vision that is bringing us closer to our goal to save one life every hour.”

P&G has been working with partners to provide clean drinking water in developing countries for nearly a decade with its award-winning water purification technology. To date, clean drinking water provided by P&G has saved an estimated 32,000 lives and prevented 250 million days of diarrheal illnesses across 71 countries. The powdered water purification product is a simple and effective way to make clean drinking water for the entire family, as the packets turns dirty, potentially deadly water into clean and drinkable water very quickly.

“It’s one of the simplest things we can do to save lives,” President Clinton said.

As a part of its CGI commitment, P&G will be participating in the Flash Flood for Good – a new social media initiative to be launched at the CGI Annual Meeting in New York City on September 24th. This effort will focus the attention of global leaders, not-for-profits, NGO’s, academics, celebrities, private sector partners, corporate brand and the public at large on the need for clean drinking water. The funds raised through this initiative will be used to deliver life-saving clean drinking water to Myanmar, Rwanda and Ethiopia through implementing partner World Vision. Supporters of FlashFloodForGood.org can use their digital voice to amplify the call to action to raise awareness and donate funds.

About Procter & Gamble and the P&G Children’s Safe Drinking Water Program

P&G serves approximately 4.8 billion people around the world with its brands. The Company has one of the strongest portfolios of trusted, quality, leadership brands, including Ace®, Always®, Ambi Pur®, Ariel®, Bounty®, Charmin®, Crest®, Dawn®, Downy®, Duracell®, Fairy®, Febreze®, Fusion®, Gain®, Gillette®, Head & Shoulders®, Iams®, Lenor®, Mach3®, Olay®, Oral-B®, Pampers®, Pantene®, Prestobarba®, SK-II®, Tide®, Vicks®, Wella®, and Whisper®. The P&G community includes operations in approximately 70 countries worldwide. Please visit http://www.pg.com for the latest news and in-depth information about P&G and its brands.

The P&G Children’s Safe Drinking Water Program (CSDW) is a non-profit initiative that has provided 6 billion liters of clean drinking water to people in need since 2004. CSDW has partnered with a diverse network of organizations to help distribute water purification packets in developing countries. To learn more about the P&G CSDW Program, and see how the water purification packets work, please visit www.csdw.org.

About Clinton Global Initiative

Established in 2005 by President Bill Clinton, the Clinton Global Initiative (CGI), an initiative of the Clinton Foundation, convenes global leaders to create and implement innovative solutions to the world’s most pressing challenges. CGI Annual Meetings have brought together more than 150 heads of state, 20 Nobel Prize laureates, and hundreds of leading CEOs, heads of foundations and NGOs, major philanthropists, and members of the media. To date CGI members have made more than 2,300 commitments, which are already improving the lives of more than 400 million people in over 180 countries. When fully funded and implemented, these commitments will be valued at $73.5 billion.

CGI also convenes CGI America, a meeting focused on collaborative solutions to economic recovery in the United States, and CGI University (CGI U), which brings together undergraduate and graduate students to address pressing challenges in their community or around the world, and, this year, CGI Latin America, which will bring together Latin American leaders to identify, harness, and strengthen ways to improve the livelihoods of people in Latin America and around the world. For more information, visit clintonglobalinitiative.org and follow us on Twitter @ClintonGlobal and Facebook at facebook.com/clintonglobalinitiative.

Del Monte Foods Plants the SEED for Sustainability Excellence

San Francisco – August 1, 2013 – Del Monte Foods announced today the winners of its inaugural Sustainability Excellence and Education (SEED) Awards, a program that recognizes its manufacturing and distribution facilities for displaying excellence in environmental sustainability and employee education. Del Monte is proud to recognize its distribution center in Lathrop, California, pet food plant in Buffalo, New York and vegetable manufacturing plant in Sleepy Eye, Minnesota as the program’s first winners.
 
“Del Monte understands the importance of environmental stewardship and while we’re proud of our accomplishments to-date, we understand how important it is to continue innovating,” said Jarod Cook, director of environmental services.  “The SEED Awards not only celebrate employees’ efforts, they also inspire our facilities to continue working toward further advancements in environmental sustainability.”
 
To select the winners of the inaugural awards, Del Monte’s Corporate Responsibility Leadership Team evaluated Del Monte’s plants and distribution centers in the categories of water, waste and energy. Each facility was rated based on environmental impact reduction progress from both 2007 to 2012 and 2011 to 2012, as well as the facility’s efforts to educate staff about its environmental sustainability programs and progress. 
 
Del Monte’s distribution center in Lathrop, California received the SEED Award for water usage reduction. Between 2007 and 2012, the facility achieved a 32 percent decrease in water usage as a result of its drip irrigation system installations and xeriscaping work, a process that replaces non-native plant species with native plants better suited for the environment. The Sleepy Eye, Minnesota plant, where Del Monte processes peas and carrots, received the SEED Award for energy reduction. Sleepy Eye achieved a nearly 25 percent decrease in electricity usage and seven percent decrease in natural gas usage from 2007 to 2012. These results were driven by numerous initiatives, including the installation of insulated warehouse windows and roofs, an upgraded boiler burner and more efficient heaters, as well as improved heat recapture methods. Del Monte’s Buffalo, New York plant, which manufactures the famous Milk-Bone® dog biscuits, won the SEED Award for waste reduction by demonstrating impressive waste diversion results. Between 2007 and 2012, the plant became the first Del Monte manufacturing facility to reach zero landfill status through programs that include waste-to-energy conversion and waste repurposing. 
 
Each of the SEED Award winners received a commemorative plaque to display at their facility, as well as $1,000 to donate to the local charity of their choice.
 
As a company, Del Monte Foods has set broad sustainability goals in the areas of water, waste and energy that it is driving to achieve by 2016. As of 2012, Del Monte has surpassed its goals in waste to landfill reduction and reduction of greenhouse gas emissions caused by transportation, and is well on its way to achieving a 20 percent reduction in fresh water usage and 15 percent reduction in packaging materials.  For more information on Del Monte Foods’ progress against its sustainability goals and other programs, please visit www.delmontefoods.com/CR.
 
About Del Monte Foods
Del Monte Foods is one of the country’s largest producers, distributors and marketers of premium quality, branded pet products and food products for the U.S. retail market, generating over $3.8 billion in net sales in fiscal 2013. With a powerful portfolio of brands, Del Monte products are found in eight out of ten U.S. households. Pet food and pet snacks brands include Meow Mix®, Kibbles ‘n Bits®, Milk-Bone®, 9Lives®, Pup-Peroni®, Gravy Train®, Nature’s Recipe®, Canine Carry Outs®, Milo’s Kitchen® and other brand names. Food product brands include Del Monte®, Contadina®, S&W®, College Inn® and other brand names. The Company also produces and distributes private label pet products and food products.
 
For more information on Del Monte Foods, visit the Company’s website at www.delmontefoods.com.

Del Monte. Nourishing Families. Enriching Lives. Every Day.®

Dinner to Honor Terry Bradshaw and Other Legends Will Benefit Fund To Cure Paralysis

NEW YORK (July 30, 2013) – The Buoniconti Fund to Cure Paralysis,the fundraising arm of The Miami Project to Cure Paralysis, will host its 28th Annual Great Sports Legends Dinner at the Waldorf Astoria on Monday, September 30, 2013.Brian WilliamsAnchor and Managing Editor of NBC Nightly Newswill serve as Master of Ceremonies of the dinner, which honors philanthropic heroes and sports legends that inspire and motivate those affected by spinal cord injuries.

The annual event, hosted by Nick and Marc Buoniconti and chaired by Mark Dalton, benefits The Buoniconti Fund to Cure Paralysis and raises funds to support the ground-breaking spinal cord injury research done by researchers at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine’s Miami Project to Cure Paralysis. Since its inception in 1985, the Great Sports Legends Dinner has honored more than 283 sports legends and honorees and has raised nearly $93 million for The Miami Project’s spinal cord injury research programs.

The celebration assembles sports legends, celebrities, philanthropic icons and corporate leaders to support the efforts of the Buoniconti family, along with numerous longtime supporters. The 2013 Great Sports Legends include:

  • Terry Bradshaw – Former NFL Hall of Fame quarterback, who led the Pittsburgh Steelers to four Super Bowl titles in a six year period, as well as eight AFC Central Championships. Bradshaw is now the TV analyst and co-host forFOX NFL Sunday.
  • James Worthy – Named as one of the 50 Greatest Players in NBA History, Worthy was a seven-time NBA All-Star, three-time NBA champion and the 1988 NBA Finals MVP. Worthy now serves as a TV analyst for the Los Angeles Lakers.
  • Dave Winfield – Former NY Yankee, seven time Gold Glove Award winner, 1992 World Series Champion, and twelve time All-Star, ESPN named Winfield the third-best all-around athlete of all time in any sport. He is a member of both the Baseball Hall of Fame and the College Baseball Hall of Fame. Currently, Winfield serves as Executive Vice President and Senior Advisor to the San Diego Padres, as well as a TV analyst for ESPN’s Baseball Tonight
  • Nick Faldo – Top professional golfer, who has won six major championships – three British Open championships and three Masters, he was formerly ranked No. 1 on the Official World Golf Rankings, and is now TV golf analyst for CBS and the Golf Channel.
  • Shawn Johnson – 2008 U.S. Olympic gymnast, who won the gold medal for balance beam and team, all-around, in addition to the silver medals for floor.
  • Gary Stevens – A member of the Racing Hall of Fame, Stevens has been in the winner’s circle three times each at the Kentucky Derby, Preakness Stakes, and the Belmont Stakes. He has won the Santa Anita Derby a record nine times, as well as eight Breeder’s Cup races. Stevens currently works at NBC Sports as a horse racing analyst.
  • Antron Brown – American drag racer, known for winning the Top Fuel National Hot Rod Association championship. He is the sport’s first African American champion.
  • Teresa Edwards – Former WNBA player and coach, who was placed withinSports Illustrated’s “100 Greatest Female Athletes of the 20th Century” and competed in both the 1988 and 1992 Summer Olympics. Edwards now serves as a TV analyst for NBC Sports.

 

Honorees for the evening include:

  • Jim Kelly – Hall of Fame quarterback, four-time AFC champion and Pro Bowl player, will receive the 2013 Inspiration Award.
  • Kenny Smith – Two-time NBA champion player and NBA TV analyst will receive The 2013 Buoniconti Fund Award.
  • The dinner also will feature a performance by Broadway’s “Jersey Boys.”

 

“Every 48 minutes, someone in the U.S. is paralyzed from a spinal cord injury, reinforcing that it can happen to anyone at any time,” said Nick Buoniconti, Founder of The Buoniconti Fund. “We need to continue to raise awareness and focus on the research to find a cure for paralysis. We are so honored that so many legendary athletes and influential figures are joining The Buoniconti Fund and The Miami Project to Cure Paralysis in this fight. Paralysis does not discriminate and, together, we need to stand up for those who cannot.”

Past “Legend Alumni” and Honorees have included:  Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Andre Agassi, Troy Aikman, Buzz Aldrin, Muhammad Ali, Mario Andretti, Dr. Maya Angelou, Charles Barkley, Tom Brokaw, Joe DiMaggio, Gloria Estefan, Marshall Faulk,  George Foreman, Wayne Gretzky, Dorothy Hamill, Mia Hamm, Tony Hawk,  Evander Holyfield, Magic Johnson,  Michael Jordan, Nancy Kerrigan, Lennox Lewis, Mickey Mantle, Willie Mays, Joe Namath, Jack Nicklaus, Roger Penske, Mike Piazza, Scottie Pippen, Shaquille O’Neal, Jerry Rice, Pat Riley, Cal Ripken, Jr., Bill Russell, Kelly Slater, Joe Torre, Dara Torres, and many other heroes who recognize that paralyzing injuries can and do occur in the pursuit of athletic careers and everyday lives.

 

The event is not only expected to sell out, but also raise millions of dollars for the spinal cord injury research programs at The Miami Project to Cure Paralysis. The evening will begin with cocktails and a Buy It Now Store where attendees can purchase one-of-a-kind sports memorabilia, amazing jewelry, spectacular getaways, a unique Kidz Korner and other exclusive items. There will be a live auction boasting travel and entertainment packages, sports and music memorabilia, and experiences including the opportunity to golf with the greatest golfer of all time, Jack Nicklaus, and an Iconic New York Package presented by Tiffany & Co.

 

Tickets start at $850 per person and can be purchased by phone at (305)-243-4656 orhttp://www.thebuonicontifund.com/GSLD.  Sponsorships and opportunities to sit with legends are also available. 

For more information about The Buoniconti Fund, please visit:www.thebuonicontifund.comFacebook, or Twitter.

About The Miami Project to Cure Paralysis and The Buoniconti FundIn 1985, Barth A. Green, M.D. and NFL Hall of Fame linebacker Nick Buoniconti helped foundThe Miami Project to Cure Paralysis after Nick’s son, Marc, sustained a spinal cord injury during a college football game. Today, The Miami Project, a Center of Excellence at theUniversity of Miami Miller School of Medicine, is the world’s most comprehensive spinal cord injury research center and is housed in the Lois Pope LIFE Center. The Miami Project’s international team of more than 250 scientists, researchers and clinicians take innovative approaches to the challenge of spinal cord injury. Committed to finding a cure for paralysis resulting from spinal cord injury and to seeing millions worldwide walk again, the Buoniconti family established The Buoniconti Fund to Cure Paralysis in 1992, a non-profit organization devoted to assisting The Miami Project achieve its national and international goals. For more information, please visit: www.thebuonicontifund.com.

Brooke Jackman Foundation And Sag Foundation Bookpals Launch Books Talk Back To Support Children’s Literacy

New York, NY (July 18, 2013): The Brooke Jackman Foundation (BJF), a children’s literacy organization that has donated more than 200,000 books to children and families in need since its founding in 2001, and the Screen Actors Guild Foundation BookPALS (Performing Artists for Literacy in Schools), its signature children’s literacy program where 2,200 SAG-AFTRA performers read to 60,000 children in schools, hospitals and social service agencies every month, have partnered to launch Books Talk Back, an interactive new series of theatrical readings and book donations for underserved children in the New York area.  Led by actress Dana Marie Ingraham, who is currently performing in Spiderman on Broadway, the first reading was held on Thursday, July 18, for 30 special needs children, ages two to three, who are receiving site-based early intervention at the Challenge Early Intervention Center in Sunset Park, Brooklyn.

 

The Challenge Early Intervention Center, which provides services for children with special needs, currently has no funding for libraries in its classrooms. In an effort to meet this need, BJF donated 140 books to create mini libraries in each of the school’s five classrooms. This book donation also ensured that each of the 80 students in the early intervention program went home with a book of his or her own.

 

“The children at Challenge Early Intervention Center are extraordinary, and we are thankful for the opportunity to serve this community and encourage interactive reading as a daily activity,” said Erin Jackman, executive director of the Brooke Jackman Foundation. “Working with the SAG Foundation BookPALS, we want to capture the imagination of these children and have them fall into a lifelong love of reading.”

 

“The SAG Foundation BookPALS are delighted to be working with the Brooke Jackman Foundation in providing critical literacy programming to the students who need it most,” said Jill Seltzer, executive director of the SAG Foundation.

 

Each Books Talk Back reading will feature professional actors from SAG Foundation BookPALS who will dramatically read children’s books specifically selected for their humor, diverse characters and ample wacky roles for the professional actors to perform, creating a thrilling literacy experience for children of all ages. Each event will also be accompanied by a book donation from the Brooke Jackman Foundation, ensuring all participants go home with a book of their own. 

 

Several Books Talk Back events will be held throughout the coming year. Each event will serve a different population of children in need. For more information on these events, please contactinfo@brookejackmanfoundation.org.

 

About the Brooke Jackman Foundation

The Brooke Jackman Foundation was started 11 years ago to honor Brooke Jackman, a bright and compassionate 23-year-old who was killed in the 9/11 terrorist attacks before achieving her dream of becoming a social worker. Brooke was an avid reader, and her passion and commitment to literacy and helping children spurred the Jackman family to create BJF as her living legacy – turning tragedy and despair into hope for a better world. Since 2001, the Brooke Jackman Foundation has donated nearly 200,000 books and over 20,000 Brooke Packs, backpacks filled with books and school supplies, to children and families in need. BJF has established four libraries, as well as a number of after-school literacy programs in schools, homeless shelters and Family Justice Centers for victims of domestic violence and crime. The BJF Family Literacy program welcomes over 1,000 families a year at schools in Williamsburg, Greenpoint, Washington Heights and Inwood, as well as at the NYC Family Justice Centers in Brooklyn, Queens and the Bronx. For more information, please visitwww.brookejackmanfoundation.org.

 

About the Screen Actors Guild Foundation and BookPALS

The Screen Actors Guild Foundation provides vital assistance and educational programming to the professionals of SAG-AFTRA while serving the public at large through its signature children’s literacy programs. Founded in 1985, the Screen Actors Guild Foundation is a national non-profit organization, independent from SAG-AFTRA, that relies solely on support from grants, corporate sponsorships, and individuals to maintain its programs and create new ones. Visit www.sagfoundation.org andwww.bookpals.net

Sterling Optical Celebrates 100 Years in Business by Giving Back

(Melville, NY) June 2013 – Sterling Optical has reached a milestone of 100 years in business. Originally a single store founded in the financial district of New York City in 1913, Sterling Optical is now one of the largest retail optical companies in the United States, and continues to expand. The company has grown to more than 125 locations in the Northeast, Midwest, Mid-Atlantic and West Coast, accomplished through franchising and acquisitions. A pioneer in the optical industry, Sterling Optical was one of the first to focus on developing proprietary private label brands and forming partnerships with frame vendors worldwide – a winning combination that directly benefits their customers.

Now, Sterling Optical, one of the retail arms of Emerging Vision, continues to break new ground as it launches Project Eyesight, a 501(c) 3 charitable organization that provides free on-site eye exams and glasses to low-income and special needs communities in the United States who might not otherwise have ready access to treatment. This initiative is especially meaningful to Emerging Vision’s Chief Executive Officer Glenn Spina, who has traveled the world providing vision care in impoverished areas.

The 100th anniversary was an ideal time to give back as the company continues to expand.

“We are encouraged by the continued success and growth of Sterling Optical. On this, our 100th anniversary, we are positively thriving with our family of franchisees who provide an exceptional level of quality care to Sterling Optical customers,” said Brian Alessi, chief financial officer. “We are pleased to announce that we are continuing to expand beyond the United States and opening additional units in the Caribbean; specifically Curacao, Aruba and St. Maarten. These retail locations will give us a wonderful opportunity to continue to expand worldwide.”

“Across the United States, vision is a luxury that many take for granted. Our 100th anniversary is the perfect opportunity to give back and engage with our customers and the communities we serve in ways we’ve never had the ability to before,” Mr. Spina added. “We are pleased to announce that we have formed a non-profit organization, Project Eyesight, which will enable us to be charitable right here at home and fulfill our vision of providing free eye care for the needy communities that are currently in underserved neighborhoods throughout the United States.”

Launched in the summer of 2013, Project Eyesight will provide both impoverished and special needs children and adults with the gift of improved vision through donated prescription eyeglasses, eye exams, education and other ancillary items. Outreach will occur both on the corporate and franchise level, based on the urgency of need in the local communities to be served.

For more information on Project Eyesight, please contact:

Sterling Optical

520 Eighth Avenue

23rd Floor

New York, NY 10018

646-737-1500

About Emerging Vision

Emerging Vision, Inc. is a leading provider of eye care products and services, and operates one of the largest franchised optical chains in the United States. The Site for Sore Eyes brand has 40 locations across California and the Sterling Optical brand has more than 125 franchised and company-owned stores located across 13 states, the District of Columbia and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Most stores offer prescription and non-prescription eyeglasses, eyeglass frames, ophthalmic lenses, contact lenses, sunglasses, and a range of ancillary items. The company also operates VisionCare of California (d/b/a Sterling VisionCare), a specialized healthcare maintenance organization that employs licensed optometrists to provide services for stores in California. The company also operates Combine Buying Group and the Optical Group, two leading optical group-purchasing businesses that provide their member retailers with vendor discounts on optical products in the United States and Canada, respectively.

For more information, visit www.sterlingoptical.com.

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