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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

Impact Investing

This category includes articles about people, firms and foundations that invest in social good by investing in social entrepreneurs, social impact or pay-for-success bonds, etc.

Falling Whistles Coalition Member Ignites Driving For Peace

LOS ANGELES (August 1, 2013) – Falling Whistles, a campaign for peace in the Democratic Republic of Congo, announces story of Swedish coalition member Daniel Laurén and his converted Audi R8, now a symbol of peace. Laurén foiled his entire luxury sports car in Falling Whistles designed graphics, creating a tool for conversation and calling attention to the current state of Congo, home to the deadliest war of our time.

 

Falling Whistles #drivingforpeace from Tillsammans Med. on Vimeo

After coming in contact with Falling Whistles one year ago, Daniel Laurén became fascinated by the company’s entrepreneurship and work toward peace. As a philanthropist, humanitarian and auto enthusiast, Laurén realized the opportunity to marry his passion for cars with social good, and elevate the discussion of Congo by turning his car into a symbol.

“As an entrepreneur myself, my philosophy in life is to make money so I can help make this world a bit better to live in. This is why I wanted to engage as a whistleblower for peace,” explains Laurén, “I hope that Driving for Peace will inspire other people to ask questions, develop solutions and channel their talents and passions into activism.”

Description: Macintosh HD:Users:ASHTON:Desktop:The Car:Before:_ODE6651.jpg          Description: Macintosh HD:Users:ASHTON:Desktop:The Car:After:_UDR2862.jpg

Graphics depict a growing/shrinking outline of Congo, representing the five generations of colonial rule endured by the country. On the side of the car, a black circle reads “6.9 Million Dead,” the estimated amount of deaths in Congo since 1994 due to natural resource war. The print was designed by Falling Whistles Art Director, Mario Salangsang.

Description: Macintosh HD:Users:ASHTON:Desktop:The Car:After:_UDR2873.jpg“Congo’s outline becomes smaller or larger depending on how it is viewed. The illusion is symbolic of the potential to move forwardwith democracy, or fall back into a cycle of dictatorship and rebellion,” says Salangsang.

The Audi R8 will be driven around Stockholm and neighboring cities by Daniel Laurén to ignite conversation and inspire discussion on the situation in Congo from Sweden’s public.

Falling Whistles began when Founder Sean Carasso met five boys in a military encampment in Congo. Within our world’s deadliest war, the boys had been taken from their homes and thrown into combat as child soldiers, forced to fight for two opposing rebel armies. One boy told Carasso that kids too small to carry guns were sent to the front lines of war armed with only a whistle. Falling Whistles has not been silent since. Four years later, Falling Whistles is investing in eight Congolese visionaries rebuilding their communities, and their growingcoalition includes over 75,000 whistleblowers, 35 Congressman, 16 Senators, and 200 retailers worldwide.

New Report Highlights Use of Entrepreneurship to Solve Social, Environmental and Economic Problems

NEW YORK, July 31, 2013 – There is a revolution going on in the world of social change. Across the nonprofit, private, and public sectors, innovators are expanding how they approach problems through new business models and driving change effectively.  Today, the McGraw Hill Financial Global Institute issued a new white paper delving into these and a variety of other questions surrounding social entrepreneurship in the United States.

The report by Georgia Levenson Keohane “Social Entrepreneurship: How Innovative Change-Makers Are Testing New Solutions to Entrenched Social, Economic and Environmental Problems,” uses case studies on topics as varied as Teach for America and the government of New York City to illustrate how the social entrepreneurship phenomenon has reshaped the way that human services are delivered.

America has a rich history of entrepreneurship, not just in the capital realm but in the social as well, including the American Red Cross founder Clara Barton and Martin Luther King, Jr. With this foundation, American society is ripe for an increasing reliance on social entrepreneurship, the author writes. For instance, some advocates say that foundations should learn from venture capital models and entities that fund social change should focus on providing more money over longer time frames to fewer organizations and to work closely with grantees to ensure future success.

Commercialization has benefitted philanthropic and nonprofit organizations, reshaping them to better assist their targets. For example, Keohane cites the microcredit industry which harnesses private capital for social purpose by providing small loans made to people who would not otherwise qualify at traditional lending institutions. The notion of microcredit began in the mid-1970s in Bangladesh, and by the early 2000s, commercial investors entered the industry. Today, $65 billion of microcredit loans are made to some 100 million borrowers worldwide, and much of this growth, Keohane says, is due to an infusion of private capital.

Keohane says social entrepreneurship has been around for years but this new activism is growing given its momentum, sweep and fundamental approach to problem-solving. She eyes an even bigger future for social entrepreneurship in the decades ahead, citing innovations in philanthropy, such as an increased emphasis on measurement and evaluation, the role of technology and the growth of nonprofit investment funds.

“The coming years will mark new inroads for social entrepreneurship, with better defined solutions for government and private leaders to collectively work together towards broader social change and shared prosperity,” said Keohane, who writes regularly on social and economic policy and the intersection of business and society for the Harvard Business Review, The Nation, The American Prospect, The Washington Monthly, Slate, and other publications. She is also the author of Social Entrepreneurship for the 21st Century: Innovation Across the Nonprofit, Private and Public Sectors, which informed many of the concepts outlined in the report.

 To download the full report, visit  http://www.mhfi.com/about/global-institute/white-papers/social-entrepreneurship.

Kiehl’s Since 1851 Embarks On 4th Liferide For amfAR

2013 LIFERIDE_logo_flat_UPDATENEW YORK, July 2013 – Maintaining its long-standing tradition of supporting HIV/AIDS charities, Kiehl’s Since 1851, the venerable New York-based purveyor of fine quality skin and hair care, is pleased to announce its continued partnership with amfAR, The Foundation for AIDS Research, and the fourth annualKiehl’s LifeRide for amfAR.

 

HIV/AIDS awareness has long been at the forefront of Kiehl’s philanthropic efforts, and through partnerships with organizations like amfAR, as well as the Magic Johnson AIDS Foundation, andYouthAIDS, Kiehl’s has proudly donated more than $2,500,000 for the cause. 

 

With the mission to heighten awareness, and raise funds for amfAR, the company is embarking on the fourth annual Kiehl’s LifeRide for amfAR, a multi-day, multi-stop charity motorcycle ride taking place July 31 – August 8, 2013, through the Pacific Northwest.

 

Celebrating with the public at seven Kiehl’s retail stores along the route, the company will donate a total of $125,000 over the course of the ride.  At each stop, the public will be invited to meet the riders, learn more about amfAR, and contribute to the organization.

 

Inspired by Kiehl’s history with motorcycles, spirit of adventure, and philanthropic heritage, theride will be led by Chris SalgardoPresident, Kiehl’s USA and Kevin Robert FrostamfAR CEO, riding with approximately ten fellow motorcycle enthusiasts eager to join the fight against HIV/AIDS, including John Corbett, Gilles Marini, Kurt YaegerTeddy Sears, and World Cup Rugby Champion Ben Cohen. In addition, amfAR’s Global Fundraising Chairman, Sharon Stone, will accept the check for the full donation to amfAR, at the LifeRide Finale, Aug. 8, at The Grove in Los Angeles.

 

Key partners for the ride include Harley-Davidson Authorized Rentals, the world’s largest provider of motorcycle rentals, and Delta Air Lines, which serves more than 160 million customers each year.

 

With more than 350 locations in 18 countries and the largest fleet of late-model Harley-Davidson motorcycles, Harley-Davidson Authorized Rentals provided more than 80,000 riding experiences over the course of more than 220,000 days and more than 50 million miles traveled in 2012 alone.

 

Delta was named by Fortune magazine as the most admired airline worldwide in its 2013 World’s Most Admired Companies airline industry list, topping the list for the second time in three years. With an industry-leading global network, Delta and the Delta Connectioncarriers offer service to 330 destinations in 65 countries on six continents.

 

Additional support will be provided by Dreamworks StudiosLes Atelier Ruby Helmets and Belstaff,

 

The Cure Is In Your Hands!

 

UltimateHandSalve_Charity_FinalKiehl’s and amfAR would like all to be a part of this year’s ride, either by attending one of the stop events, or by participating and donating online. The ride will be stopping to celebrate at the following stops (press and public welcome!):

 

·         July 31:     Stop 1: Kiehl’s Bellevue Square, Bellevue, WA – 11am – 12pm

                        Stop 2: Kiehl’s University Village, Seattle, WA12:30pm – 2:30pm

·         Aug. 1:      Kiehl’s Portland, 712 North West 23rdAve., Portland, OR 

11am   – 1pm

·         Aug. 4:      Kiehl’s Westfield San Francisco Centre, San Francisco, CA 

2:30pm – 3:30pm

·         Aug. 5:      Kiehl’s Fillmore St., 1971 Fillmore St., San Francisco, CA – 

12:30pm-2:30pm

·         Aug. 6:      Kiehl’s Westfield Valley Fair, Santa Clara, CA – 12pm – 1pm

·                                                                     Aug. 8:      Kiehl’s at The Grove, Los Angeles, CA  – 12pm – 3pm 

 

In celebration of LifeRide, every customer that visits one of these stores on the event day will receive a 15% discount on all purchases, with the exception of charitable products and value sets. Kiehl’s will donate that 15% to amfAR, up to the $125,000 total donation.  (Each stop store will also offer the celebration discount on a second day, either before or after its stop; contact each stop store for details.)

 

Support amfAR!

Even if they can’t be part of the ride events, Kiehl’s customers nationwide can join the fight against HIV/AIDS: 

 

  • LIMITED EDITION PRODUCT TO BENEFIT amfAR: In celebration of LifeRide, Kiehl’swill introduce a Limited Edition Ultimate Strength Hand Salve,a new, jumbo size of the company’s classic formula and customer favorite.  100% of Kiehl’s net proceeds from the sale of this product, up to $25,000, will benefit amfAR. The Limited Edition Ultimate Strength Hand Salve will be available in a specially designed 7.8.oz size, and is adorned with a red cap. $28.50at Kiehl’s retail stores and specialty store partners nationwide, and at Kiehls.com.

 

  • SOCIAL MEDIA:

 

    • Share to Care! Show your support for Kiehl’s LifeRide for amfAR by swapping your current Facebook profile picture for ours. “Like” Kiehl’s FB and post #SharetoCare as your status; when we have 1851 picture swaps, we’ll contribute $15,000 of the overall donation.

 

    • Play #LifeRideMatch! Follow us on Instagram @KiehlsNYC to follow along the journey.  For every themed picture we post live from the ride, post your own within the same theme, tag us, and use #LifeRideMatch. We’ll contribute $10,000 of the overall donation, on behalf of the top four followers who post the most!

 

    • Follow our riders! Follow our riders along their journey with daily updates, contests, photos and video posted on Kiehl’s Facebook(Facebook/Kiehls), Twitter (@Kiehls and @KiehlsPrez) Instagram(@KiehlsNYC), and YouTube channel (YouTube.com/KiehlsNYC). Use #LifeRide to join in the conversation.

 

 

Chris Salgardo                        @KiehlsPrez

John Corbett               @RealJohnCorbett

Ben Cohen                  @RugbyBenCohen

Kurt Yaeger                @KurtYaeger

Gilles Marini               @GillesMarini

Teddy Sears                @TeddySears

 

@Kiehls

@amfAR

@HarleyDavidson

@Delta

@LesAteliersRuby

@Belstaff


 

  • CELEBRATION DISCOUNT TO BENEFIT amfAR:  Kiehl’s will offer aCelebration Discount of 15% off all purchases at each LifeRide stop store for two days: the day it is hosting an event and either the day before or after (check with each store for details.) In addition, Kiehl’s will offer the 15% Celebration Discount at remaining Kiehl’s retail stores nationwide, Aug. 10 and Aug. 11. Kiehl’s will donate that 15% difference to amfAR, up to the $125,000 total donation. 

 

  • DONATE IN STORE AND ONLINE: Visit any Kiehl’s retail store or Kiehls.com/liferide to donate directly to the cause.

 

Together, from all of these elements, and with the help of our friends and customers, Kiehl’s LifeRide for amfAR will raise more than $150,000 for amfAR.

 

To find out more about LifeRide, obtain a schedule of events, or get involved in the fight against HIV/AIDS, please visit www.kiehls.com/liferide

 

About amfAR, The Foundation for AIDS Research:

amfAR, The Foundation for AIDS Research, is one of the world’s leading nonprofit organizations dedicated to the support of AIDS research, HIV prevention, treatment education, and the advocacy of sound AIDS-related public policy.  Since 1985, amfAR has invested more than $366 million in its programs and has awarded grants to more than 2,000 research teams worldwide. For additional information on amfAR, visit www.amfAR.org.

 

About Harley-Davidson Authorized Rentals:

With more than 350 locations in 18 countries and the largest fleet of late-model Harley-Davidson motorcycles, Harley-Davidson Authorized Rentals is the largest provider of motorcycle rentals in the world.  In 2012, Harley-Davidson Authorized provided more than 80,000 riding experiences over the course of more than 220,000 days and more than 50 million miles traveled. Every Harley-Davidson Authorized Rental includes a Harley-Davidson helmet and rain gear, short term luggage storage, and 24-hour roadside assistance. Online reservations at any participating dealer can be made 24 hours a day at h-d.com/rentals.

 

About Delta Air Lines:

Delta Air Lines serves more than 160 million customers each year. Delta was named by Fortune magazine as the most admired airline worldwide in its 2013 World’s Most Admired Companies airline industry list, topping the list for the second time in three years. With an industry-leading global network, Delta and the Delta Connection carriers offer service to 330 destinations in 65 countries on six continents. Headquartered in Atlanta, Delta employs nearly 80,000 employees worldwide and operates a mainline fleet of more than 700 aircraft. The airline is a founding member of the SkyTeamglobal alliance and participates in the industry’s leading trans-Atlantic joint venture with Air France-KLM and Alitalia. Including its worldwide alliance partners, Delta offers customers more than 15,000 daily flights, with hubs in AmsterdamAtlantaCincinnatiDetroitMemphisMinneapolis-St. Paul,New York-LaGuardiaNew York-JFKParis-Charles de GaulleSalt Lake City and Tokyo-Narita. Delta is investing more than $3 billion in airport facilities and global products, services and technology to enhance the customer experience in the air and on the ground. Additional information is available ondelta.com, Twitter @DeltaGoogle.com/+Delta and Facebook.com/delta.

 

Kiehl’s commitment:

In 1996 Kiehl’s made HIV/AIDS a key philanthropy.  Over the past two decades, the fervent support of HIV/AIDS organizations has been at the heart of Kiehl’s efforts, leading to partnerships with organizations such as amfAR, The Magic Johnson Foundation for AIDS and Youth AIDS.  Since 2001, Kiehl’s has raised over $2,000,000 for HIV/AIDS organizations and continues to do so.  For additional information on Kiehl’s since 1851, visit www.kiehls.com.

Making Associations Work: New Book By IU Experts Offers Recipe For Success

BLOOMINGTON, Indiana – Millions of Americans belong to membership organizations from trade unions to neighborhood associations, from sports clubs to chambers of commerce.  The effectiveness of those groups is in large part determined by the abilities of their governing boards.  Two Indiana University researchers offer a recipe for strong board leadership in a new book that tackles an important but overlooked subject.

 

Based on a survey of nearly 1,600 nonprofit CEOs and executive directors, these are the key ingredients to success developed by Dr. Beth Gazley and Professor Ashley Bowers from the Indiana University Bloomington School of Public and Environmental Affairs:

 

·         A strong strategic orientation and culture

·         Effective selection and decision-making procedures

·         A culture of learning and assessment

·         Close relationships with staff and with one another

The survey also revealed a warning that member-serving organizations should take seriously: many of their directors are making plans to leave their jobs.

 

Gazley and Bowers analyze the survey results and lay out strategic choices that answer the question in the book’s title:  What Makes High-Performing Boards: Effective Governance Practices in Member-Serving Organizations (ASAE Association Management Press).  The study was sponsored by the ASAE Foundation, the research arm of the American Society of Association Executives. 

 

“Associations and organizations with dues paying members serve a broad swath of society,” Gazley, a former fundraising professional and management consultant for public interest, cultural and higher education institutions, says.  “They operate in many parts of the nonprofit tax code and haven’t been studied nearly as much as charities have.  But they are also led by boards, and good governance matters equally to them.  All boards are expected to perform their stewardship and oversight roles in an increasingly transparent environment, under the scrutiny of the public, the media, and regulators.”   

 

Bowers adds, “Not only is this study addressing the important and understudied area of governance in member-serving organizations but it does so with methodological rigor. This ensures that we produce accurate and reliable recommendations.”

 

Good governance begins with a well-chosen and right-sized board.  Gazley and Bowers found that boards of about 12-20 members operate more effectively, but caution that there is no magic number.  “Above all,” says Gazley, “good governance is about intentional design.”  Strategies for screening prospective board members and limiting their terms in office are also strong contributors to board performance.  External nominations and appointments are problematic and introduce the potential for conflicts of interest.

 

Once a board is in place, the members are most effective when they think strategically.  “We found that all too often boards get swept up in the day to day operations of the organization,” Gazley says.  “That frustrates the CEOs and staff.  They want the board to spend its time pointing the ship to the right destination so they’re free to focus on the journey.” 

 

Boards also operate most effectively when the members willingly take a hard look at their own performance.  “Self-assessment matters,” Gazley says.  “There are a lot of board assessment tools out there, but we found the board’s commitment to the process was more important than the choice of tools.”

 

A final element in good governance is a well-trained CEO and stable, professional staffing.  The best CEOs are trained in association management and have a long tenure in their positions, the authors conclude. 

 

“The problem is that many association leaders don’t see long tenures as likely,” Gazley says.  “Nearly half our respondents were planning to leave their positions and 29 percent expected to quit within the next three years.  They’re highly dissatisfied with board performance and they’re voting with their feet.” 

 

The solution, suggests Gazley, is for boards to practice an active culture of responsibility and to invest sufficiently in board development and management.  “Whatever size, composition, and decision-making structure they choose, structure is ultimately less important than the means by which they facilitate effective decisions as a governance body.”

Pediatric Non-profit and Cancer Research Foundation Announce Grant to Fund Treatment

(New York) – Today pediatric cancer researchers got a huge boost after The Samuel Waxman Cancer Research Foundation (SWCRF) and The Max Cure Foundation awarded them a grant worth $100,000.

 

The Max Cure/SWCRF Collaborative Pediatric Cancer Research Grant will be given to John Crispino, Ph.D., from the Robert H. Lurie Comprehensive Cancer Center of Northwestern University in Chicago and Shai Izraeli, M.D., from the Tel Aviv University Sackler School of Medicine Sheba Cancer Research Center in Israel. The grant will aid in finding treatments for acute megakaryocytic leukemia (AMKL), a rare form of leukemia that has a dismal prognosis. In pediatric cases of AMKL, the most prominent are in children with Down Syndrome, many of whom are sensitive to chemotherapy. “So our vision was to develop a differentiation therapy that specifically targets this type of leukemic cell,” explained Dr. Crispino.

 

“We know that these investigators have been vetted by a leading scientific advisory board within the SWCRF and have met its high standards. We are proud to be identified with SWCRF and the great work it does to advance the cause of cancer research, including research for childhood cancers,” said David Plotkin, Co-Founder and Chairman of Max Cure Foundation.

 

“Our collaboration with Max Cure benefits everyone,” said Samuel Waxman, M.D., SWCRF Founder and CEO. “Collaboration between foundations with similar goals is what’s needed to develop new, minimally toxic treatments.”

 

The scientists plan to further investigate the role of two proteins in AMKL. “We still don’t know how these proteins contribute to leukemia,” Dr. Crispino explained. “But we hope to gain new insights into the biology of the disease and find new targets for therapy.” 

 

About the Max Cure Foundation (MCF)

The mission of Max Cure Foundation is to advance cures for pediatric cancers, fund the development of less toxic treatments for children, including the funding of an immune cell therapy laboratory at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center dedicated to alternative treatments for children battling the disease.  MCF also provides emotional and financial support to both low-income families and military families who are battling pediatric cancers, while at the same time inspiring children with the disease to confront it with courage and bravery. For more information, visit www.maxcurefoundation.org.

About the Samuel Waxman Cancer Research Foundation (SWCRF)

The SWCRF is an international organization dedicated to curing and preventing cancer. The Foundation is a pioneer in cancer research, focusing on uncovering the causes of cancer and reprogramming cancer cells. We dedicate ourselves to delivering tailored, minimally toxic treatments to patients. Our mission is to eradicate cancer by bridging the gap between lab science and the patient. Through our collaborative group of world-class scientists, the Institute Without Walls, investigators share information and tools to speed the pace of cancer research. Since its inception in 1976, the SWCRF has awarded more than $85 million to support the work of more than 200 researchers across the globe. For more information, visit www.waxmancancer.org.

MoolaHoop Launches Rewards-Based Crowdfunding Platform Dedicated to Women Entrepreneurs

SAN FRANCISCO, CA and AUSTIN, TX (July 24, 2013) – Launching today, MoolaHoop is a rewards-based crowdfunding platform designed to help women-owned businesses achieve financial success. Created by women to help women leverage the increasing power of crowdfunding to start, build or grow their business, MoolaHoop enables female business entrepreneurs, owners and managers to garner financial support for their idea or project by leveraging their social networks.

MoolaHoop’s launch features the BlueAvocado and Open Arms campaign to fund the creation of an eco-collection of Made in the USA reusable totes manufactured by women war survivors using reclaimed t-shirts and remnant fabrics.

MoolaHoop was developed to help narrow the gap in funding available to women entrepreneurs. Women-owned businesses represent almost 30% of new startups in the U.S., yet receive just 5% of all venture capital and 12% of all institutional debt. As a result, they are smaller from the onset and grow more slowly. Capitalizing on the explosive growth in rewards-based crowdfunding, MoolaHoop is out to change this dynamic.

Austin, TX-based BlueAvocado is a women-founded, women-run, certified B Corp that has realized double-digit growth the past two years and is at a growth inflection point as consumers seek to “green” their lifestyle.  To expand its product portfolio and further green its supply chain, BlueAvocado turned to MoolaHoop, allowing its customers to help them grow and innovate. Through a partnership with Open Arms—a women-owned manufacturing company that employs women refugee survivors—BlueAvocado is using MoolaHoop to fund a new line of Made in the USA reusable bags produced from reclaimed t-shirts and remnant fabrics and manufactured in Austin by Open Arms employees. As a result, BlueAvocado can offer a line of Made in the USA products produced locally, and Open Arms can expand its manufacturing capacity and provide more employment opportunities for women refugee survivors.

“Our partnership with Moola Hoop and Open Arms is a demonstration of the power of women entrepreneurs to create a better world through business. Our campaign invites others to ‘Say YES’ to wasting less and empowering more, and the MoolaHoop platform makes it possible,” commented BlueAvocado Co-Founder Amy George. “If 4,000 people Say YES to one reusable bag we can keep more than 200,000 disposable bags out of landfills, upcycle 2,000 T-shirts and give four women survivors a full-time job, benefits and literacy classes for four months. If 40,000 Say YES, we can employ 28 women, and avoid two million disposables. This is deep, measurable impact.”

“We are delighted to highlight the Say YES project as part of our launch,” said MoolaHoop Co- Founder Brenda Bazan. “It’s an inspired concept that supports our mission to help make it easier for great women entrepreneurs to get funded, and a project that will strongly resonate with our users. By using the MoolaHoop platform to engage and enlist BlueAvocado and Open Arms customers and supporters, we are confident they will reach their crowdfunding goal.”

The MoolaHoop crowdfunding platform marks the first step in the design and development of a robust ecosystem of business services, information and partnerships – the “Hoop” – to fund and provide ongoing support to women entrepreneurs. As envisioned by company Co-Founders Brenda Bazan and Nancy Hayes, MoolaHoop will grow to offer a full suite of resources to support women-owned and -led businesses, including access to equity funding, education, mentoring and skills.

In addition to the Say YES BlueAvocado/Open Arms campaign, MoolaHoop launches with a project by Live Worldly to expand its global fashion marketplace; a campaign to help Life Out of the Box grow its line of artisan jewelry; and Tatty Tat’s  project to enable the creation and purchase of personalized temporary tattoos from mobile devices. With new projects posted weekly, MoolaHoop anticipates hosting more than 20 women-focused crowdfunding campaigns over the next few months.

For more information, to submit a project, or to contribute to a current MoolaHoop campaign, please visitwww.moola-hoop.com.

About MoolaHoop

Founded by two experienced women business leaders, MoolaHoop is a rewards-based crowdfunding platform designed for women entrepreneurs. Capitalizing on the explosive growth in rewards-based crowdfunding—projected to generate more than $700 million for businesses and projects in 2013— MoolaHoop is the only platform dedicated to the funding and acceleration of U.S.-based women-owned or-led businesses. MoolaHoop is building an ecosystem of business support and services, and developing partnerships with women-focused organizations and institutions, to seamlessly connect women to the financial, human and social capital they need for business success. MoolaHoop has offices in Dallas, TX and San Francisco, CA. www.moola-hoop.com.

About Blue Avocado

BlueAvocado is a premium eco-lifestyle brand synonymous with inspiration, impact and integrity. With its covetable designs, affordable price points and sustainable products, BlueAvocado is poised to deliver on their promise to empower people to reduce their ecological footprint, enable the dreams of other women entrepreneurs and create an impact that inspires action. In fact, the original vision of three women, friends and sisters, has evolved into a new model for business success, a better B-corp business. To date, the company has kept over 128 million disposable alternatives out of landfills, upcycled more than three million bottles and invested in more than 450 women micro-entrepreneurs. Find out more about their mission to “smile more and waste less” at www.blueavocado.com.

About Open Arms

Open Arms is a social enterprise using the power of business to inspire social change. This humanitarian manufacturing company, based in Austin, TX, creates its own brand of fashionable apparel as well as offering U.S.-based manufacturing for other brands. Open Arms offers living wage employment to women war survivors, demonstrating the power of the human spirit and breaking the cycle of poverty this group  so often experiences. Combining ESL and enrichment classes with family-friendly hours, this meaningful work and living wage employment creates self-sufficiency and dignity for the women they employ. Open Arms is committed to both people and the planet, offering conscious consumers the opportunity to make  a purchase with a purpose. www.theopenarmsshop.com.

Cherokee-McDonough Challenge Announces Class of 2013

(Raleigh) – July 23, 2013The Cherokee-McDonough Challenge, an accelerator designed to identify, fund and develop high impact environmental startups, has selected bioMASON,HomeWellness and Platinix for its 2013 class. This year’s ventures make sustainable building materials, increase residential energy efficiency and aim to substantially reduce the cost to produce hydrogen, a clean energy fuel.

bioMASON, based in Research Triangle Park, uses microorganisms to grow bio-cement based construction materials. The company’s proprietary manufacturing processes and materials allow it to deliver construction materials with very low embodied energy, which can be produced on-site from locally available aggregate. The strength and durability properties of bioMASON’s products are comparable to traditional masonry products.

HomeWellness, based in Raleigh, helps corporations offset carbon emissions by providing their employees a web-based platform that enables users to assess their home’s energy efficiency, decide upon energy-efficient upgrades, select and manage contractors and take advantage of financing, tax credits and other incentives.

Platinix, based in Raleigh and incubated out of North Carolina State University, has developed an efficient and viable alternative to platinum as a catalyst for use in hydrogen production. Platinix’s catalyst can be produced at a fraction of the cost of platinum and could enable hydrogen to become a cost-effective fuel source. A hydrogen-based energy economy means affordable, abundant clean energy.

“There is no doubt that entrepreneurship is a hot topic these days,” says, JT Vaughn, the Challenge Director. “But converting good ideas into great businesses is no small task. And entrepreneurs should not have to do it alone. The Challenge and its network of experienced advisors and mentors share lessons learned with these visionary founders in order to make the process of launching a company easier and more effective.”

Now in its third year, the Cherokee-McDonough Challenge provides each venture with:

  • $20,000 in seed funding
  • free office space for three months in Raleigh, NC, (a focal point in the renowned Research Triangle)
  • assistance with incorporation, accounting, and tax-compliance set-up
  • hands-on mentoring from Cherokee’s professionals, William McDonough, an advisory committee of experienced entrepreneurs and investors, and a communications coach
  • an opportunity to present to other investors and the public

Cherokee-McDonough Challenge portfolio companies should finish the summer with a working prototype, a refined and vetted environmental strategy, a thoughtful intellectual property strategy, investor-ready fundraising documents with accompanied pro-forma, a stronger network of investors and mentors, a polished pitch and a clear path to the next technical or financial milestone.

Chris Wedding, Cherokee’s Director of R&D and Sustainability, says, “For years, Cherokee has experimented with best practices for efficiently creating or finding and then supporting the most promising new environmental business ideas. The Challenge is a great platform for doing this.”

For more information, visit http://www.cherokeechallenge.com or email JT Vaughn atjvaughn@cherokeefund.com.

About Cherokee
The Challenge is sponsored by Cherokee, an environmentally focused investment company. Cherokee has raised over $2 billion in private equity funds focused on brownfield remediation and, separately, founded a number of environmental businesses and invested in over 80 startups and venture funds in the past 28 years. Through the Challenge, Cherokee hopes to lend experience and expertise to other environmental entrepreneurs.

About William McDonough
William McDonough is a globally recognized leader in sustainable development. A pioneer architect of the green building movement, McDonough’s interests and influence range widely, and he works at scales from the global to the molecular. Time magazine recognized him in 1999 as a “Hero for the Planet,” stating that “his utopianism is grounded in a unified philosophy that-in demonstrable and practical ways-is changing the design of the world.” In 1996, McDonough received the Presidential Award for Sustainable Development, the nation’s highest environmental honor, and in 2003 he earned the first U.S. EPA Presidential Green Chemistry Challenge Award for his work with Shaw Industries, the carpet division of Berkshire Hathaway. In 2004, he received the National Design Award for exemplary achievement in the field of environmental design. McDonough advises major enterprises including commercial and governmental leaders worldwide through McDonough Advisors. McDonough also co-founded Make It Right (2006) with Brad Pitt to bring affordable, Cradle to Cradle-inspired homes to the New Orleans Lower 9th Ward after Hurricane Katrina. He is co-author of Cradle to Cradle: Remaking the Way We Make Things (2002) and The Upcycle: Beyond Sustainability — Designing for Abundance (2013) 

George Mason University Announces New Endowed Professorship Established

by Shari Arison

Endowed Professor of Doing Good Values will focus on advancing the Doing Good Model by Shari Arison, and exploring its application in business and philanthropy to promote values-based activity.

 FAIRFAX, VA —George Mason University today announced the creation of the Arison Group Endowed Professor of Doing Good Values. The professorship was created with a generous donation from Shari Arison.

“George Mason University is committed to making a positive difference in the global economy, and this professorship melds perfectly with the university’s mission to create a more just, free, and prosperous world,” said Mason’s President Ángel Cabrera. “It will help strengthen our goals to create innovative teaching practices and research that not only encourage people to think in different ways, but also make them better citizens and professionals.”

American-Israeli businesswoman and philanthropist Shari Arison: “The Doing Good Model is all about making the circles of good grow in the world. It captures the approach of making a positive difference, bringing fundamental values into the hearts of people, communities, businesses, and organizations. This model, and the academic research involved, practically bridge between values and organizational structures, to enable decision making processes to be foremost values-based, for the benefit of society, the economy, and the environment.”

The Arison professor will be located in George Mason’s New Century College within the College of Humanities and Social Sciences, and will be dedicated to research and education that focuses on the application of fundamental human values to global business and a strong global “moral economy.”

“The Arison professorship complements New Century College’s mission of preparing students to address pressing social questions and global challenges,” said Lisa Gring-Pemble, associate dean of New Century College. “Upon graduation, our students embody many of the Arison values—they are engaged, well-rounded leaders, committed to creating a more just world through work in business enterprises, law, government, medicine, education, and non-profits, among others.”

About George Mason University

George Mason University is an innovative, entrepreneurial institution with global distinction in a range of academic fields. Located in Northern Virginia near Washington, D.C., Mason provides students access to diverse cultural experiences and the most sought-after internships and employers in the country. Mason offers strong undergraduate and graduate degree programs in engineering and information technology, organizational psychology, health care and visual and performing arts. With Mason professors conducting groundbreaking research in areas such as climate change, public policy and the biosciences, George Mason University is a leading example of the modern, public university. George Mason University-Where Innovation Is Tradition.

About Shari Arison

American-Israeli businesswoman and philanthropist Shari Arison, is listed by Forbes as one of the World’s Greenest Billionaires (2010), repeatedly ranked as Forbes Most Powerful Women (2011, 2012), and is a member of The B Team.

Arison is the owner of the Arison Group, a global conglomerate of businesses and philanthropic organizations that operate to improve lives worldwide through values-based investments. Its business arm, Arison Investments, includes companies in the fields of finance, infrastructure and real estate, renewable energy, salt, and water, which create long-term business investments combining substantial financial results with sustainable moral responsibility. The Ted Arison Family Foundation, its philanthropic arm, comprises philanthropic organizations and vision ventures that are committed to making impactful social investments and strategic philanthropy.

Shari Arison directs her businesses to maintain a diversified portfolio of ventures that have moral responsibility at their core.

National LGBT Economic Empowerment Tour Comes to New York City

New York, NY – June 25, 2013The National Black Justice Coalition (NBJC), the nation’s leading Black lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) civil rights organization, and the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) will host Many Faces. One Dream (MFOD), an economic empowerment tour for communities of color in New York City on October 20-22, 2013.

New York will be the 3rd stop of 13 cities throughout the country that have a significant LGBT presence in communities of color, including Atlanta, Chicago, Detroit, Ft. Lauderdale/Miami, Houston, Indianapolis, Los Angeles, New Orleans, Newark, Oakland/San Francisco, Philadelphia and Washington, DC.

Harlem Pride, Global Network of Black Pride, and LGBT Faith Leaders of African Descent have been chosen to serve as community partners for the NYC tour stop. MFOD will feature financial services and certification agents to support small business development. There will be a Small Business Marketplace where LGBT-owned businesses will have access to the resources and tools needed to grow and sustain their enterprise.

“As community partners for New York City, we are honored to announce the MFOD New York City collaboration during Harlem Pride weekend,” says Carmen Neely, president of Harlem Pride, Inc. “Economic empowerment is essential to the longevity and well-being of LGBT communities of color. Partnering with the NBJC and SBA is another step toward solidifying our community’s foundation and promoting self-sufficiency.”

One key component of the MFOD Tour is the opportunity for LGBT people of color to exchange business-to-business products and services information. MFOD participants will also learn about various certifications available and how to do business with the local, state and federal government.

For each city, the SBA and SCORE, a nonprofit association dedicated to helping grow the small business market, will provide one-on-one counseling for entrepreneurs and small businesses. Participants will select one of two tracks: “Starting Your Business” and “Taking Your Business to the Next Level.” In the first track, training will be provided on the key elements of a business plan, loans, marketing, and SBA’s program and services. The second track will be geared toward New York City’s LGBT entrepreneurs that would like to expand and grow their business.

“The LGBT small business community is helping us create an economy built to last. That is why we are proud to partner with the National Black Justice Coalition—an organization that represents the many faces and true diversity of the movement for full equality,” says Eugene Cornelius Jr., Deputy Associate Administrator for Field Operations at the U.S. Small Business Administration.

Black Enterprise magazine has also partnered with NBJC as the MFOD national media sponsor. The premier business news and investment resource for African Americans will work to develop content relative to the tour and wealth creation for LGBT communities of color across all platforms—print, digital and television.

“Small business represents the engine of commercial innovation, employment opportunities, and economic development. As the state of the economy gives birth to a virtual nation of entrepreneurs, we will benefit immensely from a transformative development inclusive of LGBT business owners of color,” explains Derek T. Dingle, Black Enterprise Editor-in-Chief.

The National Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce (NGLCC) is another key partner of this initiative.“We are thrilled to serve as a conduit for LGBT entrepreneurs of color to not only get certified and strategically grow their businesses, but also establish valuable business connections across the nation,”Justin Nelson, NGLCC Co-Founder and President. “We look forward to meeting business owners and future business owners in the cities where they live and working with them to build strong and fully inclusive local economies.”

“Despite the challenges we face, gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people represent an untapped segment of aspiring entrepreneurs and business owners,” explains NBJC Executive Director Sharon J. Lettman-Hicks“Rich with ideas and talent, LGBT men and women are creating and leading their own companies. It’s time to expand the conversation from economic security to economic empowerment. It’s time for us to own our power.”

For more information, visit www.manyfacesonedream.com. If you are interested in sponsorship opportunities for MFOD, please contact Richard E. Pelzer II, President of Global Network of Black Pride, at richard@gn-bp.com or 212-537-4069, and Carmen Neely, President of Harlem Pride, at cneely@harlempride.org or 347-846-0362.

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