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This category includes articles about nonprofit organizations and NGOs that are actively working to accomplish a social mission. The work of foundations that primarily work as grantors to other nonprofits is covered in Philanthropy.

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Bloomberg Square Mile Relay Returns To New York City

More Than 70 Companies to Race in Exclusive Global Relay through Wall Street on May 4, supporting the National September 11 Memorial & Museum

Press Release – April 27, 2017, New York – The globally renowned Bloomberg Square Mile Relay is returning to the streets of NYC’s Financial District on May 4th. The corporate relay now takes place in ten major cities around the world – last year more than 5,500 runners from 430 companies took part in this global series.

The one-of-a-kind, immersive team building experience will feature more than 70 teams from the city’s leading institutions who compete to win the coveted trophy and bragging rights as the ‘fastest firm in the city’, in support of the race’s Community Partner – the National September 11 Memorial & Museum – who will receive a charity check on race night:

“We are grateful to the Bloomberg Square Mile Relay for selecting us as its official community partner for a second year. Partnerships such as these are critical to help ensure the Memorial and Museum is sustained, and that visitors from around the world will be able to experience this world-class learning institution and living tribute for years to come,” said Cathy Blaney, 9/11 Memorial’s Executive Vice President of Institutional Advancement.

First launched in the heart of London in 2007, the internationally-renowned race has become synonymous with the city’s financial district – the ‘Square Mile’. Bloomberg has since expanded the race series to Dubai, Sydney, New York, Tokyo, San Francisco, Sao Paulo, Shanghai, Singapore and Hong Kong.

The event places strong emphasis on teamwork and employee interaction, making it a compelling attraction for New York’s corporates and financial institutions such as Bank of America Merrill Lynch, Citi, MasterCard, Standard Chartered, Wells Fargo and many others who will be on the start line next week.

Each team includes 10 runners, each of whom will run a unique one-mile course that traverses Water Street and Wall Street. The race culminates with a celebratory ‘After-Party,’ where runners and supporters will be treated to a live DJ set and complimentary food and drinks in the Race Village throughout the evening.

“The Bloomberg Square Mile Relay is a unique sporting event which offers a perfect opportunity for the city’s most competitive institutions to come together for a night of camaraderie, teamwork, celebration and networking. Our goal is to offer a platform for teams from local corporations to express their sporting enthusiasm, while bonding with fellow colleagues. The event is open to all levels of experience – whether you are an elite or leisure runner – we want everyone to enjoy this relay,” said Nick Keller, Managing Director of event organizer Square Mile Sport.

Participation will also help fund a local revitalization project, allowing runners to volunteer with the local Bloomberg Square Mile Relay community and have a positive impact on New York City. The collective effort of over 7,500 runners across 10 cites will positively impact the global community of race cities, reinforcing Bloomberg’s long-standing commitment to strengthening and improving lives in the communities where people live and work.

For further information on the Bloomberg Square Mile Relay or to enter a team please visit:

Website: www.squaremilerelay.com/city/new-york
Facebook: Bloomberg Square Mile Relay
Twitter: @SquareMileNYC
Instagram: BloombergSquareMileRelay
Official hashtag: #WeRunThisCity

About Bloomberg Square Mile Relay New York:

Registration for the Bloomberg Square Mile Relay is now live on the event website ­ visit https://squaremilerelay.com/city/new-york. General entry for a team of ten runners is $1,800. Only one representative from the participating corporation will need to register and pay on behalf of the team. Rates include entry to the after-race party that includes hospitality with a main meal, dessert and three soft or alcoholic drinks. Additional hospitality packages will be available to purchase online at a later date for supporters.

About Bloomberg:

Bloomberg, the global business and financial information and news leader, gives influential decision makers a critical edge by connecting them to a dynamic network of information, people and ideas. The company’s strength – delivering data, news and analytics through innovative technology, quickly and accurately – is at the core of the Bloomberg Professional service. Bloomberg’s enterprise solutions build on the company’s core strength: leveraging technology to allow customers to access, integrate, distribute and manage data and information across organizations more efficiently and effectively. For more information, visit www.bloomberg.com or request a demo.

About The National September 11 Memorial & Museum:

The National September 11 Memorial & Museum is the nonprofit organization that oversees operations for the 9/11 Memorial and 9/11 Memorial Museum. Located on eight of the 16 acres of the World Trade Center site, the Memorial and Museum remember and honor the 2,983 people who were killed in the horrific attacks of September 11, 2001 and February 26, 1993. For more information or to reserve a ticket to the 9/11 Memorial Museum, please visit 911memorial.org.

About Square Mile Sport:

Square Mile Sport is the event owner and delivery agency of the Bloomberg Square Mile Relay – a unique event series designed exclusively to provide businessmen and women with an outlet for their sporting passion. Established in 2007 in London, Square Mile Sport plans to replicate the event in cities across the world. Square Mile Sport is wholly owned by Benchmark Sport, which operates leading international brands including the Sport Industry Group and Beyond Sport. www.squaremilerelay.com

Starlight Children’s Foundation And Michaels Celebrate National Volunteer Week With Nationwide Donation Of Michaels Backpacks For Seriously Ill Children

Michaels to Deliver Backpacks Loaded with Arts and Crafts Supplies to 30,000 Kids

Press Release – LOS ANGELES, Calif. (April 25, 2017) – Celebrating National Volunteer Week, Starlight Children’s Foundation and Michaels have teamed up to deliver Michaels backpacks that will bring joy and comfort to hospitalized children across the U.S. and Canada. Generously provided by Michaels and assembled by team members across North America, Michaels backpacks are filled with cool arts, crafts, and other supplies to inspire creativity and bring smiles to seriously ill children of all ages. From April 23-29, Michaels’ team members will deliver a total of 30,000 backpacks to kids at over 380 hospitals and other healthcare facilities.

“Michaels is helping to bring moments of joy and comfort to millions of seriously ill children and their families,” said Chris Helfrich, CEO of Starlight Children’s Foundation. “Michaels backpacks will bring smiles to 30,000 children and we’re grateful for their continued generosity in communities across North America.”

LAC+USC Medical Center in Los Angeles and Children’s Health in Dallas will host special kick off events on April 25 and April 28, respectively, during National Volunteer Week. Michaels team members from 1,300 participating local stores and corporate headquarters will deliver hundreds of bags room-to-room and take part in art and craft activities with hospitalized children and their families.

“Giving back is a key value at Michaels, and we are grateful to have a partner in Starlight Children’s Foundation that supports us in bringing our commitment to life. We are proud to have our team members across the country celebrating National Volunteer Week this way and hope the backpacks being delivered this week provide some comfort, amusement, and inspire creativity for both the kids and their families,” said Chuck Rubin, CEO of Michaels.

From Incredible Jumps To Record-Breaking Dives, Purina Pro Plan Celebrates 20 Years Of The Incredible Dog Challenge

Brand Partners with Andy Roddick and America’s VetDogs to Launch “Call for Incredible” Campaign Highlighting Incredible Dog Stories

Press Release – ST. LOUIS, (April 25, 2017) – For two decades, the Purina Pro Plan Incredible Dog Challenge (IDC) has been giving competitive canine athletes a stage to demonstrate their amazing abilities in Olympic-style events around the country. To celebrate the 20th anniversary of the IDC, Pro Plan is partnering with Tennis Hall of Famer Andy Roddick to kick off the “Call for Incredible” campaign to highlight all the ways dogs are “incredible” and call on dog owners to share their own stories. For every entry in the Call for Incredible Sweepstakes[1] on proplan.com/incredible, Purina Pro Plan will make a donation to America’s VetDogs, to support the “incredible” and important work they do with service dogs and veterans with disabilities.

“Call for Incredible” is a year-long celebration showcasing all kinds of incredible dogs – from canine athletes like Incredible Dog Challenge competitors, to military dogs, and lovable couch companions like Andy Roddick’s two English bulldogs, Bob Costas and Billie Jean. Purina Pro Plan is calling for dog owners to share a photo and story on what makes their own dog incredible by visiting proplan.com/incredible. Here, dog lovers can also enter for a chance to win a trip to San Diego during Veterans Week in November to attend a special Incredible Dog Challenge on the historic USS Midway Museum, featuring some of the most incredible canine athletes and working military canines in the country. And for every entry, Purina Pro Plan will donate one pound of dog food, up to 20,000 pounds, to America’s VetDogs, which trains and places guide and service dogs to veterans with disabilities.

“The Incredible Dog Challenge is more than a competition; it’s a passionate community of dog owners, who feel the same way that we do – that all dogs are capable of amazing things,” said Christi Maginn, Brand Director, Purina Pro Plan. “’Call for Incredible’ gives us the chance to celebrate 20 years of these amazing athletes, as well as the incredible dogs that have impacted our own lives.”

The “Call for Incredible” campaign will also highlight incredible dogs whose lives are dedicated to helping military veterans, such as the guide and service dogs that work with America’s VetDogs. America’s VetDogs recognizes the powerful impact dogs can have on a person’s life and is committed to training and placing assistance dogs with veterans to help better their quality of life.

“We’re excited to partner with Purina Pro Plan to highlight the impact that highly-skilled service dogs can have to help veterans live with dignity and independence when they return from duty,” said Wells B. Jones, CEO from America’s VetDogs. “We know they are incredible and deserve recognition for the unwavering love, companionship and care they provide to their owners.”

Purina Pro Plan is committed to delivering high quality nutrition to help fuel dogs so they can do the incredible. Whether they’re jumping off docks, opening doors or napping on the patio, there’s a Pro Plan formula specially designed to fit each dog’s specific needs. Purina Pro Plan is dedicated to helping promote healthy living in dogs of all ages and activity levels through nutrition that performs.

For more information on the Purina Pro Plan Incredible Dog Challenge or “Call for Incredible” campaign, visit www.proplan.com/incredible.

About Purina Pro Plan:

Purina Pro Plan is the food of choice for 10 of the past 11 Westminster Best in Show winners*. Our goal is to give your dog the nutrition to be his absolute best, helping him to be energetic and resilient, and maintain an ideal body condition, healthy skin, and a stunning coat. Because being the best he can be means something different for every dog, our wide range of dry and wet foods and snacks, sold exclusively at pet specialty stores, can be found in five specialized categories formulated for a dog’s unique needs. For more information, visit www.proplan.com or follow @ProPlan on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, or Google+. The brand is manufactured by Nestle Purina PetCare, which promotes responsible pet care, humane education, community involvement, and the positive bond between people and their pets. A premiere global manufacturer of pet products, Nestle Purina PetCare is part of Swiss-based Nestle S.A., a global leader in nutrition, health, and wellness.

*Handlers or owners of these champions may have received food or compensation as a Purina ambassador.

About America’s VetDogs

Since 2003, America’s VetDogs (www.VetDogs.org) has trained and placed guide and service dogs to provide independence, enhanced mobility, and companionship to veterans with disabilities from all eras. In 2015, VetDogs opened its programs to first responders, including fire, police, and emergency medical personnel. America’s VetDogs is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization founded by the Guide Dog Foundation. VetDogs relies on contributions from generous individuals, corporations, service clubs, and foundations to fund its mission to help those who have served our country live with dignity and independence. It costs over $50,000 to breed, raise, train, and place one assistance dog, but America’s VetDogs provides its services completely free of charge to the individual.

Be sure to catch Charlie, the VetDogs ‘Puppy with a Purpose’ daily on NBC’s TODAY.

America’s VetDogs has been accredited by both the International Guide Dog Federation and Assistance Dogs International.

About USS Midway Museum

The USS Midway Museum is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization established in 1992. The Museum opened in June 2004. It is governed by a board of directors. Its vision is to become America’s living symbol of freedom, and its mission to preserve the historic USS Midway and the legacy of those who serve, inspire and educate future generations, and entertain museum guests.

[1] NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. Sweepstakes begins 12:00:01 a.m. ET on 4/17/17 & ends 11:59:59 p.m. ET on 9/30/17. Open to 50 U.S./D.C. residents who are at least age 21 in MS, age 19 in AL/NE or age 18 in other states/D.C. at the time of entry. To enter & for prizes, odds & full Official Rules, go to www.ProPlan.com/Incredible. Void outside 50 U.S./D.C. & where prohibited. Sponsor: Nestlé Purina PetCare Company.

Beginning at 12:00:01 a.m. ET on 04/17/2017 and ending at 11:59:59 p.m. ET on 09/30/2017, Nestlé Purina PetCare Company (“Purina”) will donate one (1) pound of food to America’s VetDogs for each entry into the Purina Pro Plan Call for Incredible Sweepstakes, with a minimum donation of 10,000 lbs. and a maximum donation of 20,000 lbs. of food. For more information about America’s VetDogs, please visit www.vetdogs.org.

Life is Good® and World Champion Gymnast Aly Raisman Launch New T-Shirt Collection to Inspire Women and Girls to be Strong, Powerful and Kind

Press Release – Boston, MA (April 25, 2017) – Positive lifestyle brand Life is Good® has joined forces with World Champion Gymnast Aly Raisman to launch a new collection aimed at empowering women of all ages by celebrating courage, authenticity, kindness and unwavering optimism. These new T-shirts are available today at LifeisGood.com/Aly.

“Partnering with Life is Good to design this line is exciting, because their brand is based on using the power of optimism to help people live their best lives, something I believe in wholeheartedly,” said Raisman. “The line is a vehicle to help share values like kindness, courage, and authenticity, in order to empower the girls and women who inspire me every day. As simple as it sounds, I think everyone struggles with just being themselves, especially at a young age with so many unfair pressures. Embracing your uniqueness and just being kind are values I hope to support through this line and beyond.”

The new Aly Tee Collection features three designs for women ($32) and girls ($20):

  • Power in Kindness – Celebrates our strongest muscle, kindness, with silhouette artwork in Dusty Orchid
  • Be Yourself – Celestial design with “Be yourself – everyone else is taken” in Night Black reminds women and girls that they are unique and beautiful in their own way
  • The Bravest – Pastel American flag print with “Land of the free because of the brave” in Bright Teal is a subtle nod to Aly and Life is Good’s USA pride, while also celebrating courage

“According to a recent study*, a girl’s self-esteem peaks when she is 9 years old, and 7 in 10 girls believe that they are not good enough or don’t measure up in some way. Life is Good and Aly want to help change that. Our brand has always been about using art to get positive, meaningful messages across,” said Lisa Tanzer, President of Life is Good. “Aly is such a positive role model, so to partner with her to inspire values that are central to our brand and also to her personal mission is really exciting for us. As Captain of the U.S. Gymnastics squad, Aly set a wonderful example for women of all ages, showing that positivity, kindness, and teamwork are a win for everyone. The messages on Aly’s T-shirts share these same important sentiments.”

To learn more about the collection, visit: www.LifeisGood.com/Aly

*CAROL MCGRAW, “Media, hormones, peer pressure do a number on girls’ confidence”, The News-Sentinel, Mon, Jul. 31, 2006

ABOUT THE LIFE IS GOOD COMPANY

The Life is Good Company is a $100 million lifestyle brand dedicated to spreading the power of optimism. The company donates 10 percent of its net profits to help kids in need through the Life is Good Kids Foundation. To date, the foundation has positively impacted 8,000 childcare providers who care for over one million kids every year, many of whom are facing early childhood trauma. Life is Good® is a registered trademark of The Life is Good Company. Please visit LifeisGood.com for more details, and follow Life is Good on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.

ABOUT LIFE IS GOOD KIDS FOUNDATION

The Life is Good Kids Foundation is an accredited 501(c)(3) that partners with organizations serving the most vulnerable children to improve the quality of their care. The Foundation’s Playmaker program connects with schools, hospitals, camps, and a variety of social service agencies to give childcare professionals the resources they need to make a positive, life-changing impact at a pivotal time in a child’s development. For more information, please visit LifeisGood.com.

About Aly Raisman

Aly Raisman, who is represented by Octagon, is the two-time team captain of the gold medal winning U.S. Olympic Gymnastics Teams in 2012 and 2016. The first American gymnast to win gold in the floor exercise, Raisman is the second most decorated American gymnast of all-time with six total Olympic medals and one of two U.S. gymnasts to make back-to-back teams in more than 15 years. A native of Needham, Massachusetts, Raisman is a leader on and off the floor as an advocate for positive body image and empowering everyone to be comfortable and confident in their own skin. Follow Aly on Twitter:@Aly_Raisman and Instagram/Facebook: @AlyRaisman

Arbor Day Program Provides Safe Rigging for Schools

USITT is calling on the backstage community to promote safe stages with the third annual Rigging Safety Day on Arbor Day, April 28.

USITT launched its first #RigSafe day in 2015, playing on the word “arbor” as a support for stage rigging. Theatre and entertainment groups around the world shared information, memes, videos, and safety tips for the system of weights, pulleys, and machinery used to hang and move backdrops, lighting, curtains, and other equipment to stage live shows.

“Arbor Day is a day for all of us to celebrate safety and training for everyone in the industry,” said USITT Executive Director David Grindle. “From the school or community theatre to the touring shows and spectacles, rigging safety is taken seriously by everyone in our industry. Use Arbor Day to thank a rigger, to celebrate safe practices, or to promote a renewed commitment to safety.”

Helping schools stay safe is the mission of the USITT’s Rigging Safety Initiative (RSI), a program launched by USITT and founding sponsor JR Clancy in 2011. Since then, USITT has approved rigging inspections and training at more than 120 secondary school stages, impacting more than 150,000 students. The program receives support from both corporate and individual donors. All monies go directly to providing inspections and training.

RSI applications are reviewed in spring and fall; the next deadline is Nov. 15. Schools that are selected and inspected receive a detailed rigging report — what’s working properly and what potential safety problems can be prevented with routine care.

“I love to visit high schools and talk to them about our industry,” said Jill Maurer, Clearwing Systems Design Engineer. “Having never had exposure to outside professionals while I was in high school compels me to educate possible technicians about how they could work and live in our industry.”

Join the initiative by sharing rigging safety tips on social media under the hashtag #RigSafe. Help USITT extend its impact on rigging safety through contributions at www.usitt.org/giving.

USITT, the United States Institute for Theatre Technology, is a national non-profit association for the live entertainment production industry. It provides hands-on learning, mentorship, and networking opportunities for emerging and working professionals in the backstage arts. Its Annual Conference and Stage Expo is the only complete production event in North America, featuring over 250 training sessions and 280 exhibitors of the latest tools and resources for creating live entertainment. More information is available at usitt.org.

American College of Education Partners with The Kids In Need Foundation

Leading online graduate degree provider for educators pledges support of national nonprofit organization, now helps impact over 4 million students nationwide

Press Release – INDIANAPOLIS – American College of Education (ACE), a regionally accredited online graduate institution dedicated to providing affordable programs for educators, recently announced a partnership with The Kids In Need Foundation, an organization dedicated to providing free school supplies nationally to students most in need. With the addition of this nonprofit partnership, ACE now helps impact over 4 million students nationwide.

Last year alone, The Kids In Need Foundation helped 200,000 teachers and 5.4 million students in some of the most challenged communities in the country. According to the 2015 Kids In Need Foundation School Supply Impact Survey of more than 11,000 teachers nationwide in low-income communities, when kids have new school supplies of their own, grades, classroom behavior, and engagement improve, self-esteem increases and attitudes toward school and learning are strengthened.

ACE recognized a common goal of helping teachers help students and initiated a relationship with the organization in 2017.

“I look forward to our partnership with The Kids In Need Foundation,” said Monica Carson, Senior VP of Enrollment Operations at ACE. “In under-served communities around the nation, we know teachers often take on the burden of purchasing school supplies for their students when they can’t afford them. By providing students with supplies, we are helping to alleviate a stressor for teachers — an undertaking in line with our own mission.”

In 2017, ACE will invest up to $20,000 in its partnership with The Kids In Need Foundation. The college will serve as a founding partner of the Kids In Need Supply Boxes, which will provide supplies to over 2,000 students in grades K-12 across the country.

“We are grateful to American College of Education, an organization that understands the value of learning, for their donation to our mission to ensure that every child is prepared to learn and succeed,” said Dave Smith, executive director of The Kids in Need Foundation. “Access to school supplies contributes to not only academic success, but also success outside of the classroom. Support for students in need of supplies can help kids develop strong self-esteem and a passion for accomplishment.”

Commissioners Proclaim May 9-10 as Centre Gives Days in Centre County

Press Release – State College, PA – With green Centre Gives stickers on their lapels and holding Centre Gives signs, the Centre County Commissioners proclaimed May 9th and 10th as Centre Gives days in Centre County!

Centre Gives is all about local people supporting Centre County – loving where they live and giving where they live,” explained Molly Kunkel, Executive Director of Centre Foundation.

Commissioners Michael Pipe, Mark Higgins, and Steve Dersham voted unanimously and for the second year in a row to make the proclamation.

Dersham noted that Centre Gives is part of what makes the Centre County such a special place to live.

This year there will be 147 non-profit organizations participating. These organizations serve Centre County residents in the areas of arts, animals, education, environment, and health & social services.

Higgins referenced the friendly competition of this 36-hour online giving event, mentioning that Lancaster believes itself to be the most generous community in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.

Centre County residents will have the chance to claim the mantle of most generous community on May 9th and 10th by visiting CentreGives.org.

“Our community is generous and full of savvy donors,” added Kunkel. “During Centre Gives, donors know that their donations will go further. They count on the stretch pool’s affect to allow their favorite local non-profit organizations to have a greater impact in Centre County. Donors also enjoy competing for the $25,000 in prizes that are offered through the event.”

Gifts go further during Centre Gives. Gifts help participating organizations receive a larger portion of the $200,000 stretch pool, as well as compete for $25,000 in prizes.

“This year, we’re excited to partner with the Hamer Foundation, which has generously doubled the Centre Gives stretch pool to a total of $200,000!” explained Kunkel. “The Hamer Foundation’s expansion of the stretch pool embodies the spirit of Centre Gives – a generous community that comes together in support of our local resources, neighbors, and organizational assets. It is a truly generous and visionary gift that all Centre County residents will be able to enjoy.”

Since Centre Gives launched in 2012, over $4,000,000 has been invested into Centre County’s local non-profit network. There have been over 23,500 gifts made, which have benefited over 130 local organizations.

Centre Gives 2017 is sponsored by many forward-thinking members of our community, including the Hamer Foundation, Knight Foundation, First National Bank, PSECU, Balfurd Dry Cleaners, and Tom and Sara Songer of the Torron Group.

Centre Gives 2017 will kick-off at 8:00 am on Tuesday, May 9th at CentreGives.org. Follow the fun on social media using #CentreGives and make sure to support your favorite local organization before the fun ends at 8:00 pm on Wednesday, May 10th!

For information, please contact Centre Foundation’s office at 814-237-6229.

Centre Foundation’s mission is to inspire and facilitate a culture of giving to create a more vibrant community.

Report: Fortune 500 Companies Accelerating Renewable Energy, Energy Efficiency Efforts

Clean energy actions saving companies $3.7 billion a year, cutting annual carbon pollution equivalent to 45 coal-fired power plants.

Press Release – WASHINGTON, DC, April 25, 2017 – Despite efforts in Washington to sideline action on climate change, a growing number of Fortune 500 companies are taking increasingly ambitious steps to reduce their greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, procure more renewable energy and reduce their energy bills through energy efficiency, according to a new report released today from World Wildlife Fund (WWF), Ceres, Calvert Research and Management (Calvert) and CDP.

Sixty-three percent of Fortune 100 companies have set one or more clean energy targets. Nearly half of Fortune 500 companies – 48 percent – have at least one climate or clean energy target, up five percent from an earlier 2014 report. Accompanying this growth is rising ambition, with significant numbers of companies setting 100 percent renewable energy goals and science-based GHG reduction targets that align with the global goal of limiting global temperature rise to below two degrees Celsius.

Findings from the new report, “Power Forward 3.0: How the largest U.S. companies are capturing business value while addressing climate change,” are based on 2016 company disclosures to CDP, which holds the world’s largest collection of self-reported corporate environmental data, and other public sources.

“American businesses are leading the transition to a clean economy because it’s smart business and it’s what their customers want,” said Marty Spitzer, World Wildlife Fund’s senior director of climate and renewable energy. “Clean energy is fueling economic opportunity from coast to coast without regard for party line. Washington policies may slow this boom, but these companies are making it very clear that a transition to a low-carbon economy is inevitable.”

The report highlights the financial benefits companies receive from their clean energy investments: Nearly 80,000 emission-reducing projects by 190 Fortune 500 companies reporting data showed nearly $3.7 billion in savings in 2016 alone. The emission reductions from these efforts are equivalent to taking 45 coal-fired power plants offline every year. Praxair, IBM and Microsoft are among the companies saving tens of millions of dollars annually through their energy efficiency efforts.

The 240 companies with targets have set one or more of the following goals: GHG reductions, energy efficiency improvements, or renewable energy sourcing. Two hundred and eleven companies have set a GHG reduction goal, making it the most common target.

“We are encouraged to see significant improvement in both the number of Fortune 500 companies setting climate and clean energy goals and the ambition of those goals – in particular commitments to setting science-based and 100 percent renewable energy targets,” said Anne Kelly, senior director of policy and the BICEP network at Ceres. “But in order to meet our national and global emissions goals, more companies will need to join the champions highlighted in this report, both in setting goals and in becoming vocal advocates for continued federal and state policies in support of climate and clean energy progress.”

Ten percent (53) of companies have set renewable energy targets, and almost half of those (23) have committed to power 100 percent of their operations with renewable energy – among those, Wal-Mart, General Motors, Bank of America, Google, Apple and Facebook. The growth in the number and ambition of renewable energy commitments is mainly the result of recent sharp declines in renewable energy costs, which saves companies money, and of price certainty that comes with renewable energy.

“Corporate commitment to energy efficiency and renewable energy is an accelerating trend that illustrates broader recognition within the business community of the importance of clean energy and the financial benefits it can yield,” said Stu Dalheim, vice president of corporate shareholder engagement for Calvert. “Many of the largest companies in the U.S. are achieving significant cost savings through clean energy programs and mitigating longer-term risks associated with energy price volatility.”

Some of the strongest efforts are also among Fortune 100 companies, with nearly two-thirds (63 percent) adopting or retaining goals. The report also shows strong improvement among the smallest 100 companies in the Fortune 500, with 44 percent setting goals in one or more categories, up 19 percentage points from the 2014 report.

The report shows a significant spread in target setting among different sectors, with Consumer Staples (72%), Materials (66%), and Utilities (65%) sectors leading in setting clean energy goals and the Energy sector (11%), including oil & gas companies, significantly lagging.

“CDP and the investors we work with, representing over US$100 trillion in assets, engage thousands of the world’s largest companies to measure and manage climate-related risks” said Lance Pierce, president of CDP North America. “Voluntary corporate disclosure highlights the compelling business case for corporate clean energy procurement and clearly demonstrates the transition underway in the energy markets. Companies in turn have benefited, identifying billions of dollars in savings and new opportunities through their disclosures to CDP.”

The report includes key recommendations for companies, policymakers and investors to continue to scale clean energy efforts, such as:

  • Companies should continue to set, implement and communicate clean energy targets, while supporting local, state and national policies that make it easier to achieve their climate and energy commitments.
  • Federal and state policymakers should establish clear, long-term low-carbon polices that will help companies meet their clean energy targets while also helping the U.S. meet its carbon-reducing commitments under the Paris Climate Agreement.
  • Investors should consider allocating their investments to companies well-positioned for the low-carbon economy. Investors should continue to file shareholder resolutions and engage in dialogues with companies to encourage them to set climate and energy efficiency targets and position themselves for a low-carbon future.

For more information and to download the full report, click here.

Lighting up Highland Park: National Nonprofit Surprises Five Residents With Light Installations Powered By The Sun

Military veteran, pastor, mother and business owner among recipients of One100 Awards for clean energy leadership

Press Release – Detroit, Michigan – A military veteran, a pastor, a mother, a business owner and a community organizer each received a big surprise yesterday, April 23rd: a solar-powered light installed on their home or business, to thank them for their clean energy leadership.

“What a wonderful surprise — and something our neighborhood needs,” said Lucy Frye, better known in the community as “Nandi.” She is the owner of Nandi’s Knowledge Café in Highland Park, a Michigan city surrounded by Detroit. “Our families and businesses thrive when we have safe streets and community spaces. For my business, this solar light will make a real difference.”

Frye was recognized for her work with the Highland Park nonprofit Soulardarity, which local residents formed after the utility DT Energy repossessed more than 1,000 of the community’s streetlights in 2011 because of increasing energy costs. The non-profit is now working to raise money – both through a crowdfunding campaign and city government collaborations – to replace all of the original lights. This approach is expected to save the city $3 million.

“The loss of our streetlights plunged virtually every street in Highland Park into darkness. People were afraid to go out at night,” said Bridgett Townsend, board president of Soulardarity and lifelong Highland Parker. “But thanks to these amazing people, we are building a homegrown collective that is lighting up the night with solar-powered lights owned and controlled by the community, and independent of any utility.”

The solar-powered lights presented on Sunday were part of the 100% campaign’s One100 Awards, which are designed to honor individuals across the country who are giving their 100% to promote clean energy. So far, awards have already been given to individuals in Buffalo, New York and San Bernardino, California. The 100% campaign is part of the national non-profit The Solutions Project founded by the actor Mark Ruffalo and dedicated to making clean energy more accessible and affordable for everyone.

“Organizations like Soulardarity are showing what’s possible when communities bring together bold innovation and deep caring,” said Sarah Shanley Hope, The Solutions Project’s executive director. “Clean energy is a breakthrough technology, but it’s when we combine it with human energy and political power that we really see lives improving.”

Highland Park residents agree.

“Solar lights are making our neighborhoods safer, but they are also doing more than that,” said Paul Bond, a military veteran who received a One100 Award and was honored with a surprise solar light on his home. “We need jobs and opportunities in clean energy for veterans and other people who live here. Soulardarity is an on-ramp for people right here in our community to become leaders in clean energy.”

In addition to Frye and Bond, three other Soulardarity activists received One100 Awards and were recognized with solar-powered light installations:

  • Rick Smith, assistant pastor at the Prayer Temple of Love
  • Phillis Judkins, North End community activist
  • Cindy Mondy, mother of six children between the ages of three and 15

“We’re extremely thankful to the 100% campaign for recognizing our hard work and for this generous award,” said Townsend. “You don’t start something like this to get national recognition but we hope to inspire other communities and show them that it is possible to do something good for people and the clean energy economy.”

International Sports & Music Project Launches Syrian Refugee Soccer Initiative

ISMP is raising funds to expand its work into a Syrian Refugee Camp

Press Release – NEW YORK (April 24, 2017) – The International Sports and Music Project (ISMP) has announced its newest partnership, a soccer program at the Ritsona Refugee Camp in Chalkida, Greece. Ritsona Refugee Camp shelters roughly 750 refugees from Syria and elsewhere, who have lost their homes and family members to dangerous conflicts in their communities.

This May, ISMP is partnering with Ritsona in an effort to bring a soccer program to the kids and young adults at the camp. In order to support its initiative, ISMP is raising funds to stock the camp with the necessary resources such as soccer nets, cleats, shin guards, soccer balls, shorts and jerseys.

Refugees at Ritsona are currently receiving necessities such as food, water and medicine, but lacking expressive outlets needed to combat the daily challenges of living in a refugee camp.

“Many children around the world face significant hardship every day, and they don’t have opportunities for enjoyment and expression,” said Jason Steinberg, founder of International Sports and Music Project. “We work to uplift people by giving them the opportunity to enjoy sports and music.”

In collaboration with partners in Rwanda and Micronesia, ISMP has helped over 150 kids participate in music classes and play on sports teams. ISMP continues to nurture its current partnerships, while also creating new partnerships such as this soccer program at the Syrian refugee camp. ISMP is currently fundraising for the materials required to bring this program to fruition.

“Soccer is the most popular sport in Syria — it was a big part of many people’s lives before the Syrian Civil War began. We’re giving people the opportunity to do something they love, which creates a sense of comfort and normalcy. Soccer gives camp residents something to look forward to, and allows them to take a break from the mental and emotional exhaustion they feel every day,” Steinberg says.

About ISMP

ISMP is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit dedicated to using sports and music to uplift people facing hardship around the world. ISMP provides sports equipment and musical instruments to schools, shelters, orphanages and refugee camps. Together with its international partners, ISMP plans and organizes initiatives that serve as meaningful outlets for people in need. To contribute to ISMP’s efforts in Greece, please visit ismproject.nationbuilder.com.

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