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Nonprofit

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.

Independent Sector Statement on Trump Administration Budget Proposal

Press Release – (WASHINGTON, March 16, 2017) — The following is a statement by Daniel J. Cardinali, president and CEO, Independent Sector:

“Independent Sector, the leading voice of the charitable community in the United States, is gravely concerned about the budget blueprint sent to Congress by the Trump Administration.

The Administration’s opening budget proposal, while non-binding, is at odds with our recently- adopted Statement of Beliefs Regarding Federal Tax and Spending Policies. Using this framework as a lens to assess the Administration’s budget, we find the deep cuts proposed to non-defense discretionary programs threaten the vitality of the charitable sector’s enduring partnership with the federal government.

More importantly, the blueprint seeks to strengthen other Administration priorities at the expense of agencies and programs that help communities address the needs of the diverse makeup of their constituencies — from celebrating cultural achievements to offering critical, life-sustaining support.

We believe that societies thrive when all people have an opportunity to prosper and succeed, and it is therefore vital that national investment and spending policies prioritize programs that are demonstrating their promise and effectiveness in increasing economic mobility and enriching the lives of all Americans. As spending debates move forward and difficult decisions about spending cuts are made, we urge policymakers to strive for and shape fiscal priorities that recognize the inherent value of all individuals, families and communities, and the institutions that work with them to build their potential as agents of positive change and renewal in our nation.

We stand ready to work in deep partnership with both the Administration and Congress to achieve that goal for the American people.”

Help INFINITI Raise Up To $700,000 In The Fight Against Cancer By Entering CBS Sports Round By Round Brackets

Press Release – FRANKLIN, Tenn. (March 10, 2017) – INFINITI will once again have a large presence throughout the ever-exciting NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Championship. For the seventh year in a row, INFINITI will sponsor the CBS Sports Round by Round Bracket Challenge.

Beginning March 12, participants can enter each of the six brackets and for every correct pick, INFINITI will make a donation to Coaches vs. Cancer®. All participants will also be entered to win a trip to the 2018 Final Four®.

“As we cheer on our respective teams during March Madness®, we are also recruiting fans to join in the fight against cancer,” said Allyson Witherspoon, director of marketing communications and media, INFINITI USA. “We are continuously grateful that we can drive attention to the inspiring work of Coaches vs. Cancer as they unite coaches, players and fans in their mission to end cancer.”

Fans’ correct picks in the Bracket Challenge will drive INFINITI’s donation of up to $700,000 to Coaches vs. Cancer®, a collaboration between the American Cancer Society and the National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC) that empowers coaches, their teams and communities to join the fight against cancer.

Fans are encouraged to return to the bracket and select their picks throughout the total of six competition rounds.

Participants can build their brackets beginning March 12 by visiting http://www.cbssports.com/INFINITI.

About INFINITI

INFINITI Motor Company Ltd. is headquartered in Hong Kong with sales operations in over 50 countries. The INFINITI brand was launched in 1989. Its range of premium automobiles is currently built in manufacturing facilities in Japan, the United States, United Kingdom and China. INFINITI plans to also expand manufacturing into Mexico by 2017. INFINITI design studios are located in Atsugi-Shi near Yokohama, London, San Diego and Beijing.

INFINITI is in the middle of a major product offensive. The brand has been widely acclaimed for its daring design and innovative driver-assistance technologies. From the 2016 season, INFINITI is a technical partner of the Renault Sport Formula 1® team, contributing its expertise in hybrid performance.

More information about INFINITI and its industry leading technologies can be found at http://www.INFINITI.com/. You can also follow us on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and see all our latest videos on YouTube.

About NCAA

The NCAA is a membership-led nonprofit association of colleges and universities committed to supporting academic and athletic opportunities for more than 450,000 student-athletes at more than 1,000 member colleges and universities. Each year, more than 54,000 student-athletes compete in NCAA championships in Divisions I, II and III sports. Visit www.NCAA.org and www.NCAA.com for more details about the Association, its goals, members and corporate partnerships that help support programs for student-athletes. [NCAA is a trademark of the National Collegiate Athletic Association.]

About the National Association of Basketball Coaches

Located in Kansas City, Missouri, the NABC was founded in 1927 by Forrest “Phog” Allen, the legendary basketball coach at the University of Kansas. Allen, a student of James Naismith, the inventor of basketball, organized coaches into this collective group to serve as Guardians of the Game. The NABC currently has nearly 5,000 members consisting primarily of university and college men’s basketball coaches. All members of the NABC are expected to uphold the core values of being a Guardian of the Game by bringing attention to the positive aspects of the sport of basketball and the role coaches play in the academic and athletic lives of today’s student-athletes. The four core values of being a Guardian of the Game are advocacy, leadership, service and education. Additional information about the NABC, its programs and membership, can be found at www.nabc.org.

John’s Incredible Pizza Company Gives Back to UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospitals a Children’s Miracle Network Hospital

California-based Family Fun Hotspot to Partner with UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospitals

Press Release – RANCHO SANTA MARGARITA – March 6, 2017 – In the spirit of giving back to the community, John’s Incredible Pizza Company will drive awareness and raise funds for UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospitals, the Bay Area’s Children’s Miracle Network hospitals, through a series of collaborations at its newest location in the NewPark Mall in Newark, Calif.

“At John’s, giving back to the community is embedded into every aspect of our business,” said owner and founder, John Parlet. “Working with UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospitals and seeing the dedication that each and every hospital employee has is inspiring. It makes you want to get up and do something. That’s exactly what we’re going to do – give back to this organization and the community.”

To celebrate the launch of its twelfth location, John’s Incredible Pizza Company will host a two-day private preview for UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospitals families and supporters. Invited guests will receive complimentary admission, which includes an All You Can Eat Buffet, Unlimited Beverages and a $10 FunCard, good for games, rides and attractions. While the celebrations will be free, guests are also encouraged to make a donation online or in-store to benefit UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospitals and will be entered for a chance to win free pizza for a year. John’s Incredible Pizza Company will also donate 20 percent of proceeds from all FunCard Special sales during these private preview days.

In addition to the preview events, John’s Incredible Pizza Company will also be donating birthday parties to UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospitals families to show their support and appreciation. Each party will include the All You Can Eat Buffet, Unlimited Beverages, $15 FunCard, 50 redemption tickets and 2 rides per person; plus a private room, party host, balloons, games, music, personalized centerpiece, gift for the birthday child and a visit from IncrediBear, John’s playful mascot.

“As the safety net hospitals for thousands of children in the Bay Area and beyond, we rely on the generosity of companies like John’s Incredible Pizza Company to fulfill our mission of providing the highest quality care to all kids—regardless of ability to pay,” said Children’s Miracle Network officer, Kelsey Cunningham.

Opening to the public this spring, the 65,000 square-foot location will feature an All You Can Eat Buffet with many items made from scratch. The buffet features 20 varieties of freshly made pizzas, fried chicken, pasta with homemade sauces, a 40+ item salad bar, soups, potato bar, and desserts. Guests are invited to enjoy their meal in one of the many themed dining rooms, including the Tahoe-style “Cabin Fever”, the kid-favorite “Toon Time Theatre”, or “Hall of Fame” sports room featuring big screen TVs to watch your favorite game. For more information on John’s Incredible Pizza Company and for the latest updates on the Newark Grand Opening, please visit www.johnspizza.com.

About John’s Incredible Pizza Company

Founder John Parlet opened the very first John’s Incredible Pizza Company location in Victorville, California in 1997 to a crowd of curious guests waiting to experience the food & fun promised inside. Fast forward 20 years later and John’s now operates nationally with 12 locations, expanding its footprint to over 60,000 square feet with an All You Can Eat Buffet, over 100 of the latest games, rides and attractions. For more information, please visit www.johnspizza.com

About UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospitals

UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospitals are members of Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals (CMNH), a non-profit organization that raises funds and awareness for 170 Children’s Hospitals across North America. In the Bay Area, 100% of funds raised by CMNH corporate partners in the Bay Area benefit UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospitals – most of it one dollar at a time. Some of the ways CMNH corporate partners give back include in-store fundraising campaigns, regular employee contributions, and cause marketing programs. For more information, please visit www.childrensmiraclenetworkhospitals.org

Evite and Common Sense Media Partner to Promote Device-Free Gatherings

Press Release – LOS ANGELES and SAN FRANCISCO (March 15, 2017) – Evite, the leading digital service for bringing people together, and Common Sense Media, the leading nonprofit organization helping kids thrive in a world of media and technology, today announced a partnership to promote the importance and benefits of device-free gatherings with family and friends.

Evite and Common Sense Media have launched a joint landing page at www.evite.com/c/commonsensemedia which provides site users with practical ideas, advice and tools for implementing device-free events. Evite has designed and added to its service a series of digital invitations with a device-free theme, including dinner parties, potlucks, kids sleepovers and more. In addition, Evite has developed original video content for users of the joint landing page with tips for hosting device-free gatherings.

As part of the partnership, Evite is also helping to promote Common Sense Medias national #DeviceFreeDinner campaign launched last fall.

“Research confirms the importance of family dinner for kids, including better vocabularies, fewer behavior problems, less substance abuse, and more,” said Amy Guggenheim Shenkan, President and Chief Operating Officer of Common Sense. “Beyond that, families can benefit from the quality time and face-to-face conversation that a device-free dinner offers, and the feedback we have received from parents and kids echoes that sentiment. We are excited to team up with the event experts at Evite to share the benefits of device-free gatherings with an even larger audience.”

“Evite exists to bring people together face to face, and this partnership with Common Sense Media reinforces the value of meaningful connections with loved ones,” said Victor Cho, Chief Executive Officer of Evite. “Technology plays an important role in our lives, but it can also be isolating. Were encouraging our users to explore device-free events in their own lives, and maybe even make it the new normal for dinner and beyond.”

About Evite

Evite (www.evite.com) is the leading digital service for bringing people together. With a wide array of free, easy-to-use invitation designs and inspirational party-planning tools, the company has sent over 2 billion event invitations in its history, enabling approximately 3 billion unique face-to-face connections. Evite makes getting together effortless and more memorable for its 100+ million annual users, sending 20,000 invitations every hour and handling hundreds of millions of RSVPs every year. Launched in 1998, Evite is headquartered in Los Angeles and is a subsidiary of Liberty Interactive Corporation, attributed to the Liberty Ventures Group (NASDAQ: LVNTA, LVNTB).

About Common Sense

Common Sense is the nation’s leading independent nonprofit organization dedicated to creating a powerful voice for kids and families in the 21st century. Millions of families, educators, and policymakers turn to Common Sense every day to access our independent rating systems, unbiased research, and trusted tools and advice that help them navigate a rapidly changing digital landscape at home and at school. Learn more at commonsense.org.

Improving The Flow of Accurate Information Focus of New Open Call For Ideas Offering Up To $1 Million

Knight Foundation, Democracy Fund, Rita Allen Foundation believe informed communities are vital to democracy, launch call for early-stage ideas

Press Release – MIAMI — March 13, 2017 — The John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, Democracy Fund, and the Rita Allen Foundation are launching an open call for ideas to address the question: How might we improve the flow of accurate information?

The foundations are looking for technologists, journalists, designers, teachers, researchers and others who are eager to develop ideas to help address concerns about the spread of misinformation and produce ways to build trust in journalism.

“We believe that informed and engaged communities are indispensable to a healthy American democracy,” said Jennifer Preston, Knight Foundation vice president for journalism. “Yet we are losing our ability to foster civic dialogue based on shared facts, due to the spread of misinformation, siloed news consumption, low levels of trust in media and the impact of technology on how we consume news and information.”

Knight Foundation will run the call through the Knight Prototype Fund, which specializes in quickly developing and testing early-stage ideas. We expect to award up to $1 million in $50,000 grants. Each grant will come with a two-day training session on building and evolving ideas through prototyping.

“The spread of misinformation erodes trust in our democratic institutions and fans the flames of hyper-partisanship,” said Tom Glaisyer, director of Democracy Fund’s Public Square program. “Democracy Fund is committed to supporting innovative ideas to combat viral deception and reinvigorate trust in the press. We hope this prototype fund sparks significant creativity and collaboration. Good ideas that help sort fact from fiction and promote civil dialogue can come from anywhere: rural and urban areas, red states and blue states, from the coasts and the middle of the country.”

“To tackle thorny issues of trust and misinformation, we will need to share knowledge and resources from many sectors,” said Elizabeth Good Christopherson, president and chief executive officer of the Rita Allen Foundation. “We look forward to accelerating the diverse, collaborative new approaches that will emerge from this initiative.”

The call is seeking diverse ideas on topics ranging from, but not limited to, the role of algorithms in news consumption, methods for separating facts from fiction, building bridges across ideological divides and strategies for ensuring journalism organizations are authentic to the communities they serve.

The deadline to submit ideas is April 3, 2017 at 5 p.m. ET. Winners will be announced in June. The Prototype Fund accepts applications from nonprofit and for-profit organizations, individuals, and startups. Organizations must be based in the United States.

For more information and to apply, visit knightfoundation.org/informed.

About the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation

Knight Foundation is a national foundation with strong local roots. We invest in journalism, in the arts, and in the success of cities where brothers John S. and James L. Knight once published newspapers. Our goal is to foster informed and engaged communities, which we believe are essential for a healthy democracy. For more, visit knightfoundation.org.

About Democracy Fund

Democracy Fund is a bipartisan foundation that invests in organizations working to ensure our political system is able to withstand new challenges and deliver on its promise to the American people. Today, modern challenges—such as hyper-partisanship, money in politics, and struggling media—threaten the health of American Democracy. Democracy Fund invests in change makers who advocate for solutions that can bring lasting improvements to our political system and build bridges that help people come together to serve our nation. Learn more by visiting democracyfund.org.

About the Rita Allen Foundation

The Rita Allen Foundation invests in transformative ideas in their earliest stages to leverage their growth and promote breakthrough solutions to significant problems. It enables early-career biomedical scholars to do pioneering research, seeds innovative approaches to fostering informed civic engagement, and develops knowledge and networks to build the effectiveness of the philanthropic sector. Throughout its work, the Foundation embraces collaboration, creativity, learning and leadership.

Study Reveals Communications Gap Between Mid-Level Donors, Nonprofits

NextAfter Reveals Responses after Gifts between $1,000 and $5,000

Press Release – FRISCO, Texas, March 13, 2017 – A new fundraising study by NextAfter shows that many mid-level donors fall into a communications “black hole,” forgotten by the organizations they faithfully support.

NextAfter is a fundraising research lab and consultancy that works with nonprofit organizations to help them grow their online fundraising. They made donations in the mid-level donor range – between $1,000 and $5,000 – to 37 different organizations across 12 different verticals. Afterwards, they monitored the emails, direct mail and phone calls received from these organizations for 90 days. Key findings included:

  • Only 8 percent of organizations called to say thank you;
  • One-third of organizations never called their donor by name;
  • Only 31 percent of communication came from a real person; and
  • 49 percent of organizations never asked for a second gift.

In contrast, most nonprofits have standard procedures for responding to smaller gifts – usually email or direct mail – and larger gifts. Major donors typically receive a call from a representative of the organization; previous research indicates that a donor’s second gift may be up to 40 percent more if he or she receives that thank-you call.

“Most organizations don’t say ‘thank you’ nearly enough,” said Tim Kachuriak, NextAfter’s founder and the author of the study. “Start implementing the ‘thank you, thank you, thank you’ rule. Thank your donor at least three times for every gift. Give them a call, send them an email, and send them a letter. We have found that any organization, no matter its size, should be able to do this effectively.”

Forty percent of the organizations studied stopped communicating after one month, and 9 percent didn’t communicate at all – not providing a gift receipt, appeal for more donations or new information about the organization. In other words, they provided no incentive to give again.

NextAfter received 224 messages after making the contributions, and only 1 percent of them came over the phone. Twenty-one percent came via direct mail, and 78 percent came via email. About two-thirds of the email responses had the name of the organization – rather than a real person – in the sender line.

“People give to people – not organizations, fundraising programs or email machines,” Kachuriak said. “Your fundraising is most effective when you stay focused on building personal relationships with your donors. If we show genuine interest in people we care about – and we should care about our donors – we should stop talking to them as if they’re people we’re trying to manipulate.”

Interestingly, NextAfter conducted an experiment with one organization featuring two kinds of year-end email appeals for donations. The first was a long-form letter with an electronic signature from the organization’s president, a well-known retired politician. The second shorter and more personal appeal came from the lesser-known director of membership. It generated almost four times as much revenue as the email from the organization’s president.

“For some reason, we often think that by sounding official, authoritative and wordy, people will be more motivated to give,” Kachuriak said. “But donors are smart. They are receiving hundreds, maybe even thousands, of messages every day/week/month, and consequently they’ve developed a sensor that can detect anything that is trying to convince them to do something they don’t want to do. People don’t want to be marketed to. They want to be communicated with.”

For the complete study, please visit https://www.nextafter.com/midlevel.

Dace West named The Denver Foundation’s Vice President of Community Impact

Community leader and expert on transit equity, affordable housing, engagement in low-income communities joins the Foundation’s executive team

Press Release – Denver – The Denver Foundation, Colorado’s largest and most experienced community foundation, today named Dace West as its Vice President of Community Impact.

West will step down from her role as Executive Director of Mile High Connects, a Denver Foundation partner, on March 23. Beginning April 5, West lead The Denver Foundation’s community grantmaking and programmatic activities in four areas of focus: Basic Human Needs, Economic Opportunity, Education, and Leadership and Equity. She will also oversee Strengthening Neighborhoods, technical assistance, leadership development, and directed grantmaking programs. The Vice President of Community Impact will steward strategic relationships with key partners Mile High Connects, Social Venture Partners Denver, and the Colorado Nonprofit Loan Fund.

West, who was selected following an extensive national search, is recognized as a uniquely qualified, connected, and forward-thinking leader on transit-oriented development, affordable housing, economic development, resident engagement, transit equity, and other issues that have a direct impact on low-income and vulnerable communities in Metro Denver and across the region.

“Throughout her career, Dace has developed deep knowledge about the issues The Denver Foundation is committed to, including economic development, affordable housing, education, and more,” says Christine Márquez-Hudson, President and CEO of The Denver Foundation. “She has demonstrated extraordinary talents in community leadership. We are very fortunate to have her join us in this new capacity.”

“Dace believes deeply in collaboration, and as a leader she is able to bring out the best in her colleagues,” says Patrick Horvath, The Denver Foundation’s Director of Economic Opportunity. “She is also deeply committed to the Foundation’s core values of community leadership and racial equity, and brings concrete experience in both of these areas to our work.”

Since West joined as Executive Director three years ago, Mile High Connects has built a network of more than 300 community partners including Colorado Housing and Finance Authority, Denver Office of Economic Development, The Colorado Health Foundation, The Colorado Trust, Enterprise Community Partners, and FirstBank, among others. Under West’s leadership, Mile High Connects has achieved multiple policy wins including reinstatement of bus routes in low-income neighborhoods, strengthening of affordable housing preservation policies, prioritization of jobs for local workforce on construction projects, and significant advocacy around affordability of bus and light rail fares.

West was instrumental in creating and expanding the Denver Transit Oriented Development Fund, an acquisition fund to preserve affordable housing near transit that has grown to $24 million. She also led the launch of the Regional Equity Atlas, a nationally recognized data tool used to demonstrate disparity in the region. Mile High Connects provides nearly $1 million in grants to the Denver region’s nonprofits annually.

West previously served as the Director of the Denver Office of Strategic Partnerships, an office created by Denver’s Mayor in 2004 to serve as a liaison between the City and its nonprofit sector. She has also served as Executive Director of HealthBridge Alliance and Director of Organizational and Resource Development at Front Range Economic Strategy Center.

“In my work, I’m devoted to pulling together diverse partners across a variety of issues to work toward common, comprehensive goals and create real change for stronger communities,” says West. “I’m thrilled to bring my skills to this new role within The Denver Foundation, which has been doing this work for more than 90 years.”

West has served on a number of nonprofit governance and advisory boards, including the Rocky Mountain Survivors Center, Denver Young Nonprofit Professionals Network, Abusive Men Exploring New Directions (AMEND), Denver Center for Crime Victims, Denver Mayor’s Children’s Cabinet, Rocky Mountain MicroFinance Institute, Denver Small Business Support Coalition, National Council of Nonprofits Government Contract Reform Task Force, and Colorado Nonprofit Association Education Committee.

West holds a Masters of Nonprofit Management from Regis University and a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from the University of Colorado at Boulder, graduating Summa Cum Laude and Phi Beta Kappa.

About The Denver Foundation

The Denver Foundation is a community foundation that inspires people and mobilizes resources to improve life in Metro Denver. In 2015, the Foundation and its donors awarded more than $97 million in grants. The Denver Foundation has three roles: stewarding an endowment to meet current and future needs for Metro Denver, working with community leaders to address the core challenges that face the community, and managing more than 1,000 charitable funds on behalf of individuals, families, and businesses. For more information, visit www.denverfoundation.org.

Grueling 3,000 Mile Bike Race Is “Race For Hope” Benefitting Kids With Cancer

Press Release – Reston, Va. – Len Forkas, a Reston-based entrepreneur, will once again tackle the grueling ultra-cycling challenge, Race Across America (RAAM), to raise money for Hopecam, a nonprofit he founded to help children undergoing cancer treatment stay virtually connected to their classmates, friends and support networks.

“Last year Hopecam hit the milestone of connecting its 1,000th child. My goal between now and June is to raise $1 million dollars so that we can help 1,000 more kids,” Forkas said. “Racing RAAM helps me raise nationwide awareness about childhood cancer and the help Hopecam provides.”

Despite RAAM’s excruciating demands, Forkas says his hardest journey started in 2002, when his son Matt was diagnosed with Leukemia at age nine.

“When Matt got sick, he went through so much physically and emotionally. The best advice we received was to help Matt feel like a normal kid while he endured treatment,” Forkas said. “Since Matt’s compromised immune system kept him out of school and away from his friends, he grew lonely and depressed. At the toughest time in his life, when he needed his friends the most, he was stuck at home undergoing treatment. We came up with the idea of connecting him virtually, using webcams at school and at home. ”

In 2003, witnessing the positive effects Matt’s friends and classmates had on his recovery, Forkas founded Hopecam to help other kids undergoing cancer connect to their support networks. Since then, Hopecam has helped more than 1,000 children connect to 10,000 classmates in 46 states. Forkas turned to exercise to cope with the stress of his son’s illness. By competing in ultra endurance races, he has raised more than $1 million in sponsorship contributions.

The RAAM is one of the longest annual endurance events in the world, spanning 3,089 miles over the Rocky Mountains, through the desert and over the Appalachians. From California to Maryland, it is about 1,000 miles longer than the Tour de France and has to be completed in half the time. The bicycle race is also unique because there are no stages; cyclists rest only as needed, averaging 18-20 hours on the bike per day. The race must be completed in 12 days for solo riders. The 2017 RAAM begins Tuesday, June 13. Based on the race’s 35-year history, only half of solo riders will make it to the finish line.

Forkas successfully completed RAAM in 2012 when he was 52 years old, winning his age division and coming in 10th overall out of 47 cyclists from 20 countries. Leading up to the race he raised $300,000 for Hopecam. He dedicated each day of his ride to a child with cancer being helped by Hopecam.

“As hard as the race was, I knew the pain I was experiencing wasn’t anything compared to what these kids endure for months or years, and that kept me going,” Forkas said.

“Hopecam was founded before Skype and Facetime were invented. Our technology and interactions with schools were immensely important to helping kids who were feeling isolated and depressed,” Forkas noted. “While technology advances have made it easier for kids today to stay connected, Hopecam is committed to helping those who can’t afford those solutions.” Seventy percent of the children Hopecam helps attend “Title One” schools, meaning the majority of students need assistance and are entitled to receive subsidized meals. Half of them receive treatment at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.

Hopecam now provides tablets with built-in webcams and Internet access, for kids who don’t have them. The nonprofit also liaises with the child’s school to establish a regular connection so he or she can participate in classroom activities and see and talk with their friends.

“This connection is invaluable for the child in recovery, but it is also a lesson for the other children in the class. They learn a lot about empathy and it removes some of the mystery of the illness when their classmate is gone,” Forkas said.

Each year, approximately 15,000 children in the United States are diagnosed with cancer, and more than 40,000 undergo treatment for cancer.

Today, Forkas’ son Matt is a graduate of Stetson University in Florida. He works in the real-estate industry, lives in Arlington, Virginia and is completely cancer free.

Len Forkas is the founder and CEO of Milestone Communications, a wireless tower company based in Reston, Virginia. He is also the founder and chairman of Hopecam, a nonprofit that helps kids undergoing cancer treatment stay connected to their classmates, friends and support networks. In 2014, he authored, “What Spins the Wheel,” a book about the leadership lessons he gained from his Race Across America.

Mad River Valley Skiing Community Raises A Record $200K At Sugarbush Ski-A-Thon

Funds Raised Will Help Injured Mountain Sports Athletes

Press Release – Warren, VT, March 10, 2017 – The High Fives Foundation shared the slopes with 244 skiers and boarders at Sugarbush Resort’s Valley House lift on Sunday, March 5th, 2017 for the sixth annual Fat Ski-A-Thon. Participants skied “fun laps” under blue New England skies in celebration of the most successful fundraiser the Foundation has ever hosted in its history.

High Fives provides grants to mountain sport athletes who suffer from life-altering injuries such as spinal cord or brain injuries. They also teach safety awareness and smart decision making at schools locally in Northern Vermont and across the country.

At the conclusion of the event, the Foundation reported just over $193,000 in online donations, coming very close to the organizations goal of $200,000. On Monday, March 6th, 2017, the day following the event, an anonymous donor made a pledge of $7,000 allowing High Fives to reach its ambitious goal. The donor participated in the event and was inspired to help the Foundation reach the $200,000 mark.

“Looking back on the last six years of this event, it is amazing to see it grow to this level” says Roy Tuscany, Executive Director of High Fives Foundation “This community is so powerful, so strong and so supportive. These funds will continue to support athletes in their recoveries from a life-altering injury. It is a true blessing to be able to call this place home for myself and the organization.”

The event transformed Sugarbush’s Valley House chairlift and lodge beyond the normal weekend party. Ski-A-Thon participants danced in the lift line to Vermont’s DJ Professor, while they filled their pockets with donated snacks from local sponsors like the Village Grocery, Liz Lovely, Cabot Cheese, Yolo Snacks, VT Smoke and Cure and the Localfolk Smokehouse

“The Valley House was electric,” said Jesse Murphy, of Vermont North Ski Shop and Director of Development for the Foundation. “Everyone was smiling, we had bright blue skies and High Fives reached its goal. The day couldn’t have gone any better.”

The post-event awards ceremony was filled with surprises and accolades, including the prize for top individual fundraiser going to Adam Palmiter, who raised over $7,000 for the Foundation. However, the largest fundraising success came from the duo of Rubi Murphy (age 12) and Mae Murphy (age 11). They collectively raised over $33,000.

“My sister and I love collecting donations for High Fives,” said Rubi Murphy. “We’ve met many of the athletes and we are proud to raise money for them.”

Donations will be accepted through March 31st at www.fatski.highfivesfoundation.org

ABOUT THE HIGH FIVES FOUNDATION

High Fives Non-Profit Foundation, based in Truckee, CA, became an official 501c.3 non-profit on January 19, 2009. Founded by Roy Tuscany, the Tahoe-based Foundation supports the dreams of mountain action sports athletes by raising injury prevention awareness while providing resources and inspiration to those who suffer life-altering injuries. Since 2009, the Foundation has helped 148 athletes from 27 states. For more information, visit www.highfivesfoundation.org

24 Foundation Highlights Its Impact on Cancer Survivorship and Navigation Programs

Inaugural State of 24 event showcases how 24 Foundation is changing the course of cancer

Press Release – CHARLOTTE, N.C. – March 10, 2017 – 24 Foundation brought more than 100 members of the community together for its inaugural State of 24 event. The March 9 breakfast program held at Queens University of Charlotte celebrated the organization’s successes from 2016 and kicked off its 16th year in making an impact on those affected by cancer.

The following are some highlights of the impact that 24 Foundation and its community of supporters had in 2016:

  • 3,500 participants, 8,000 spectators and more than 130 sponsors and community partners were involved in 24 Foundation’s three signature cycling events – 24 Hours of Booty.
  • 150,000 cancer survivors and their families were supported by all 24 Foundation beneficiaries
  • 10,000 callers received support via national navigation phone line.
  • 550 YMCA Wellness locations, more than 40 1-on-1 Patient Navigators, and more than 700 young adults were served
  • Specifically at Levine Cancer Institute, 24 Foundation’s largest beneficiary, funds raised resulted in:
    • 55 free survivorship integrative oncology programs being offered at Levine Cancer Institute
    • Over 10,500 patients consulted with a dietician
    • Support for a 2018 outpatient care facility dedicated to survivorship and navigation programs.
  • More than $2.1 million was raised in 2016, bringing the total to $17 million raised since 24 Foundation’s inception in 2002.
  • 85 cents of every dollar is spent on mission-related expenses

24 Foundation also made a $1.5 million commitment to Carolinas HealthCare System’s Levine Cancer Institute and Levine Children’s Hospital. With this gift, 24 Hours of Booty will have donated more than $3.5 million collectively to both facilities to support adult and pediatric cancer survivorship and wellness programs.

In Maryland, 24 Foundation funds helped Ulman Cancer Fund For Young Adults support 690 young adult patients will navigation services and 49 young adults and couples with fertility preservation.

In Indiana, 2016 funds supported cancer survivorship from another angle, via a Platinum Study that aims to relieve survivors from common side effects of cancer treatment like limb pain, ear ringing and heart disease. Results of this work are still pending, but the organization is hopeful.

In addition to 24 Foundation’s three event communities, it received donations from nearly 40 different states. Nationwide, via LIVESTRONG, 24 Foundation funds allowed for:

  • 1,300 young women and couples received specialized fertility services
  • 25 LIVESTRONG at the Y programs opened, totaling to 550 locations nationwide
  • 325,000 individuals utilized online “We Can Help” resources

Beneficiary partners include: Levine Cancer Institute, Levine Children’s Hospital, Ulman Cancer Fund for Young Adults, IU Simon Cancer Center and LIVESTRONG. Additional 2016 beneficiaries included: Be the Match, Brain Tumor Fund, Keep Pounding Fund, GoJenGo Foundation, Queens University of Charlotte and Wind River Wellness Retreats.

“We are so proud of and thankful to our entire 24 Foundation community for supporting our mission and for helping change the course of cancer,” said Mallory Walsh, executive director of 24 Foundation. “Together, we are inspiring and engaging communities, making an immediate impact and providing services for all those who are affected by cancer. We are poised for a fantastic future as we continue advancing cancer navigation and survivorship for all.”

About 24 Foundation

24 Foundation is a registered 501(c)(3) non-profit charity located in Charlotte, N.C. with a mission to inspire and engage communities to make an immediate impact on the lives of people affected by cancer. Funds raised support organizations dedicated to cancer navigation and survivorship including: Carolinas HealthCare System’s Levine Cancer Institute, Levine Children’s Hospital, the Keep Pounding Fund, Queens University of Charlotte, and the LIVESTRONG Foundation. 24 Foundation provides charity non-competitive cycling and walking events – in Charlotte, N.C., Baltimore, MD., and Indianapolis, IN – that are safe, fun and open to all levels of cycling and walking abilities. For more information, call 704-365-4417 or visit www.24foundation.org.

Get updates and the inside scoop about 24 Foundation and 24 Hours of Booty on Twitter at @24foundation, on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/24foundation and on Instagram at https://instagram.com/24_foundation/, and at Snapchat at TWENTYFOUR_FOUNDATION

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