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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


This category includes stories about philanthropy, typically covering the generosity of individuals, families, groups of individuals and foundations (nonprofits primarily in the business of funding other nonprofits.

WPEO Honors Women-Owned Businesses and Corporate Members In Washington, D.C. Region With Done Deals™ Awards

Certification Offers Advantage in Increasingly Competitive Global Marketplace

Washington, D.C. (December 4, 2014) – The winners of the 2014 Done Deals™ Challenge were announced today at the Women Presidents’ Educational Organization (WPEO) annual Washington, D.C. Breakthrough Breakfast. These awards acknowledge a variety of contracts completed during the challenge period between the Washington, D.C. region’s certified Women Business Enterprises (WBEs), corporate members and the Commonwealth of Virginia.

A total of 3,000 contracts were completed among WBEs, corporate members and the Commonwealth of Virginia during the challenge period from April 1, 2013 to March 31, 2014. This year corporate members reported a 20% increase in the number of Done Deals™ with WPEO-certified WBEs.

Held for the first time in 2005, the Done Deals™ Challenge measures, acknowledges and recognizes the impact that WPEO has had on significantly increasing business opportunities for all constituents. Awards criteria include the highest number, dollar amount or cumulative value of deals reported.

The purpose of the WPEO Done DealsTM challenge program is to provide validation of the successful contracting and business opportunities that can result from the marketing, advocacy and educational support WPEO provides to WPEO-certified WBE and corporate members. The public sector often finds ideal vendors and suppliers among certified WBEs, while WBEs frequently identify opportunities to do business with each other.

“For the past fifteen years, providing more business opportunities for certified Women Business Enterprises is one of the primary ways in which the WPEO mission is activated. Today we have nearly 1,700 certified WBEs in the New York and Washington, D.C. regions. The Done Deals™ Challenge enables us to measure the competitive advantage WPEO can provide in identifying business opportunities that translate into contracting activity,” said Dr. Marsha Firestone, WPEO Founder and President.

The 2014 Done Deals™ Award Winners are:

  • Freddie Mac – Corporate Opportunity Award
    • Corporate Member that submits the most Done Deals™ with WPEO-certified WBEs
  • Bank of America – Corporate Champion Award
    • Corporate Member that submits the highest cumulative value of Done Deals™ with WPEO-certified WBEs
  • Exhibit Edge, Inc. – WBE Connection Award
    • WBE that reports the most Done Deals™ with other WPEO-certified WBEs
  • MCPADNET, Inc. – WBE Done Deals Champion Award
    • WPEO certified WBE that reports the largest number of Done Deals™ with WPEO Corporate Members
  • O-Riordan Bethel Law Firm – WBE to Public Sector with Memorandum of Understanding (MOU)
    • WPEO-certified WBE that submits the most Done Deals™ with the Commonwealth of Virginia

WPEO Board Chair Eliseo Rojas, Vice President & Chief Procurement Officer of The Interpublic Group, said, “Global brands are recognizing the strong potential for supplier diversity as a competitive advantage to help them grow their businesses, build brand awareness and enhance customer loyalty.”

“We are very pleased with the significant number of contracts reported in our territory this past year, illustrating the valuable and profitable business opportunities that can result for all parties involved,” said Sandra Eberhard, Executive Director of the WPEO branch in Washington, D.C.

This year’s D.C. Breakthrough Breakfast sponsors include:

  • Prestige Sponsor: Dominion Resources, Inc.
  • Corporate Lead Sponsors: Avis Budget Group; Capital One; Freddie Mac
  • WBE Lead Sponsors: 1st Choice, LLC; The Hamilton Group; The Event Planning Group
  • Print and Design Sponsors: Exhibit Edge, Inc.; MCPADNET, Inc.; The Sutter Group

About the Women Presidents’ Educational Organization:

The Women Presidents’ Educational Organization (WPEO) is a regional affiliate of the Women’s Business Enterprise National Council (WBENC), the nation’s premier third-party certification organization for women-owned businesses. The mission of the WPEO is to create increased access to business opportunities for WBEs. Its programs develop skills and knowledge for WBEs, advocate in the public and private sectors, foster relationships between WBEs, corporations and the government, and provide certification services.

WPEO provides full service third-party certification to women entrepreneurs in the New York, Northern New Jersey (including Princeton and points north), Southern Connecticut and the Washington, D.C., Maryland, and Virginia areas. WPEO is incorporated in the state of New York and is recognized as a 501(c) (3) organization. For more information please visit

Charitybuzz Auctions Off “Our Painted Lady”- A Hand Painted 1985 Rolls Royce By Mixed Media Artist, Ben Moon December 1st-December 17th

100% Of Proceeds Going To The Wounded Warrior Project™

Our Painted Lady,” a 1985 Rolls Royce Silver Spur hand-painted by mixed media artist Ben Moon, will go up for auction at Charitybuzz today with 100% of the proceeds going to the Wounded Warrior Project™. Bidding is open through December 17th at

Ben Moon was selected by New York car collector, Frank Marzano to paint his signature white and black designs onto the exterior of his 1985 Rolls Royce Silver Spur. The “Lady”, as the Marzano Family calls the Rolls, was prepped with a special paint known as “plastic dip”, to have the properties of an artist’s canvas, leaving the original black paint untouched.

The 1985 Rolls Royce Silver Spur is in great condition with only 37,000 miles and valued at $30,000. “Our Painted Lady” has made several high profile appearances to throughout 2014 leading up to the auction to raise awareness for the Wounded Warrior Project™ including high-profile Hamptons soirees, various charitable events in Long Island, Mercedes Benz New York Fashion Week, The 41st Annual Village Halloween Parade and most recently, the Veteran’s Day Parade in New York City.

The proceeds from the auction will support a full range of programs and services for this generation of injured veterans and their families. Of supporting such a worthy cause, Frank Marzano said, “The Wounded Warrior Project helps hundreds of thousands of service men and women deal with the physical and emotional injuries inflicted by war. The great men and women who serve our country deserve help to get back on their feet and I am happy that I can do my part in giving back to them.”

The 20 programs and services provided by WWP are uniquely structured to nurture the mind and body, and encourage economic empowerment and engagement.

For more information on “Our Painted Lady” please go to:

To bid on “Our Painted Lady” go to CharityBuzz –

About Wounded Warrior Project TM

The mission of Wounded Warrior Project™ (WWP) is to honor and empower wounded warriors. WWP’s purpose is to raise awareness and to enlist the public’s aid for the needs of injured service members, to help injured servicemen and women aid and assist each other, and to provide unique, direct programs and services to meet their needs. WWP is a national, nonpartisan organization headquartered in Jacksonville, Florida. To get involved and learn more, visit

About Charitybuzz

Charitybuzz raises funds for nonprofits around the globe through online auctions with the world’s most recognizable celebrities and brands. Featuring access to acclaimed actors and musicians, business and political leaders, star athletes, luxury travel, couture fashion, rare memorabilia and more, Charitybuzz brings its online community of bidders exclusive opportunities to live their dreams and make a difference. Since launching, Charitybuzz has raised more than $100 million for charity. To learn more, visit, like us on Facebook at or follow us on Twitter at @Charitybuzz.

12-Year-Old Los Alamos Student Initiates Holiday Event to Raise Money for Non-Profits

LOS ALAMOS, NM — In the true spirit of the giving season, a 12-year-old Los Alamos Middle School student has organized an event during Los Alamos, New Mexico’s Winterfest called, “Rock on Climbathon,” with the goal of raising at least $3,500 for local non profits, YMCA and Self Help, Inc.

Originated and organized by seventh grader, Talia Ben-Naim, “Rock on Climbathon” will give adults and kids alike a chance to try indoor rock climbing, while enjoying music, pizza, popcorn, drinks, and a chance to win raffle items donated by local merchants. Half of all proceeds benefit the local YMCA chapter, while the other half will benefit Self Help Inc. – a non-profit organization which has provided consultation and advocacy, emergency financial assistance and seed money grants to area residents since 1969.

The fundraiser is part of a “passion project” in Los Alamos Middle School’s seventh grade GATE (Gifted and Talented Education) class, in which Ben-Naim is a student. “Passion projects” for GATE students have taken place in the class for the past 15 years, and are designed to showcase a student’s passion while challenging the student to produce a result or product at the end of the project.

“While many pre-teens in the world might be focused on their wish lists for the holidays, Talia’s wish is to host a successful event to raise money for two local non profits as a way of giving back to her community in which she is passionate about,” said Ben-Naim’s GATE teacher, Naomi Unger. “She’s chosen to do something she loves – rock climbing – and turn it into something that benefits others. That doesn’t happen very often especially with these projects, and it shows the kind of person that she is – well rounded, bright, and driven.”

Ben-Naim, who has utilized the YMCA for several years, contacted the sports director at YMCA, who worked with her on the planning, implementation and marketing. Along with creating and distributing flyers and t-shirts, Ben-Naim has also gained experience promoting the event, having recently done her first radio interview with a local radio station.

“I think kids should definitely do a project like this, where they can help the community and charities around town – it would make our world a better place,” said Ben-Naim. “I wanted to give back to the YMCA and raise money for Self Help Inc, because I think it’s cool that they help people help themselves.”

Tickets to “Rock on Climbathon” are $15 in advance; $20 at the door. Tickets can be purchased online at The event will be held from 7–10 p.m. at the YMCA, located at 1450 Iris St. in Los Alamos. This is an all ages event.

Winterfest, which the “Rock on Climbathon” is part of, takes place in Los Alamos from Dec. 5–7 and features dozens of other holiday activities for the family including a North Pole Workshop, holiday lights parade and tree lighting, Creche Show, Children’s Bazaar, Affordable Arts Show, and much more. Visit for complete details.

Seven Leading Digital Health Tech Companies Showcase Cutting Edge Healthcare Solutions at the New York Digital Health Accelerator

NYDHA “Demo Day” to Feature 16 New Pilots Reinventing Healthcare in New York

New York, NY – Today, the New York Digital Health Accelerator, an intensive 5-month program created by the New York eHealth Collaborative and the Partnership Fund for New York City to foster New York’s growing health tech sector, featured seven early- and growth-stage health tech companies that are developing cutting-edge technology products for care coordination, patient engagement, predictive analytics and workflow management for healthcare providers.

The seven companies introduced 16 pilot projects developed during the Accelerator program to an audience of potential investors and healthcare senior executives. The pilots allowed the companies to validate on an initial basis both the clinical relevance and business viability.

The Accelerator, now in its second year, is unlike other accelerator programs in that it offers participating companies the opportunity to engage directly with a broad network of providers in New York State including hospitals, long-term care providers, community health centers and primary care providers who could potentially be a ready market for their products. As part of the NY Digital Health Accelerator, each chosen company also received up to $200,000 in investment capital.

“The Accelerator is a groundbreaking program that is helping some of brightest Health IT entrepreneurs take their ideas to the next level—whether they’re creating new software for patients to review hospitals in real time, or helping doctors reach at-risk patients,” said Maria Gotsch, President and CEO of the Partnership Fund. “By connecting innovative entrepreneurs and technology with New York’s healthcare providers, we are ensuring that New York’s health care sector will continue to be a leader in providing top notch health care while creating good jobs for New Yorkers in a growth tech sector.”

“We are giving Health IT companies what they need but cannot get anywhere else: access to major customers and product feedback from senior-level executives at New York’s top healthcare institutions,” said Dave Whitlinger, Executive Director of the New York e-Health Collaborative. “By providing these companies with direct mentorship to improve their technologies and business strategies, the Accelerator is quickly expanding New York’s Health IT landscape. We look forward to seeing what these companies accomplish after having completed our program.”

“Continued support of innovation in health technology is essential to improving our delivery of health care,” said Acting New York State Health Commissioner Dr. Howard Zucker. “Here in New York, advancements in this field are giving doctors and patients the ability to access critical health data at the most crucial of times, which helps to not only reduce health care costs, but more importantly, save lives.”

“New York State has become the best choice for entrepreneurs in the tech industry to turn their ideas into success,” said Empire State Development President, CEO & Commissioner Kenneth Adams. “We have the resources, talent, and capabilities necessary to create an environment that produces innovative approaches to New York’s Health IT landscape, and we are excited to see groundbreaking ideas like these develop through the Accelerator program.”

The investment capital for the Accelerator was provided by a syndicate of investors, including Baxter Ventures, Deerfield Management Company, Milestone Venture Partners, New Leaf Venture Partners, the Partnership Fund for New York City and Safeguard Scientifics. Program sponsors include Genentech (a member of the Roche Group), Infor, Merck, and Pfizer, which provided funds for operations and pilots. The Empire State Development Corporation and NYeC also provided additional funds to operate the NYDHA.

22 leading healthcare providers agreed to participate in the program including Central NY Health Home Network, Community Healthcare Network, FEGS Health and Human Services System, Greater Buffalo United Accountable Healthcare Network, Hospital for Special Surgery, Hudson River Health Care, Maimonides Medical Center, MediSys Health Network, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, Montefiore Medical Center, Mount Sinai Medical Center, NYC Health and Hospitals Corporation, New York Hospital Queens, New York-Presbyterian Hospital, North Shore LIJ Health System, NYU Langone Medical Center, Onondaga Case Management Services, United Health Services, Unity Health System, Visiting Nurse Service of New York, Stony Brook University Medical Center, and Winthrop University Hospital. Aetna provided mentorship as a health plan.

The Accelerator has already proven successful. The inaugural class of eight companies graduated in May 2013 and raised a total of $25 million post-program, driving growth and significantly expanding their customer base. Two of the companies were acquired within six months of graduating. By facilitating 17 pilots in their organizations, participating healthcare providers helped to create over 120 jobs. NY Digital Health Accelerator was ranked the #1 Health IT Accelerator by the Rotman School of Business based on 21 other programs worldwide and has been lauded by Todd Park, Former Chief Technology Officer of the United States and the California Healthcare Foundation for its deep industry ties.

The seven companies participating in the program include:

  • AllazoHealth – AllazoHealth is a predictive analytics company that solves the problem of medication non-adherence for ACOs, hospital systems, payers, and PBMs.
  • Clinigence – Clinigence provides transformational clinical business intelligence that empowers healthcare providers to successfully transform from volume to value-based payment through real-time measurement of clinical quality, patient outcomes and total cost.
  • Covertix – Covertix empowers healthcare organizations to protect and control confidential data shared between patients, healthcare professionals, hospital networks and third party vendors.
  • IQuartic – iQuartic’s technology systematically structures and exploits electronic health records (EHRs) for analytics to enable evidence based and outcome driven care, creating real-time feedback loops for providers.
  • Noom – Noom develops mobile software that helps people live healthier.
  • Quality Reviews – Quality Reviews builds proprietary software to help healthcare provider organizations capture and analyze real-time patient feedback via its flagship product, RateMyHospital®.
  • Sense Health – Sense Health is a healthcare technology company offering a mobile care management platform that engages patients through interactive care plans.

About the New York Digital Health Accelerator (NYDHA):

The New York Digital Health Accelerator is a program run by the New York eHealth Collaborative and the Partnership Fund for New York City for early- and growth-stage digital health companies that are developing cutting edge technology products in care coordination, patient engagement, analytics and message alerts for healthcare providers. & #NYDHA

About The New York eHealth Collaborative (NYeC):

NYeC is a not-for-profit organization, working in partnership with the New York State Department of Health to improve healthcare for all New Yorkers through health information technology (health IT). Founded in 2006 by healthcare leaders, NYeC receives funding from state and federal grants to serve as the focal point for health IT in the State of New York. NYeC works to develop policies and standards, to assist healthcare providers in making the shift to electronic health records, and to coordinate the creation of the Statewide Health Information Network of New York (SHIN-NY), a network to connect healthcare providers statewide. & @NYeHealth

About the Partnership Fund for New York City (Partnership Fund):

The Partnership Fund for New York City is the $110 million investment arm of the Partnership for New York City ( The Fund’s mission is to engage the City’s business leaders to identify and support promising NYC-based entrepreneurs in both the for-profit and non-profit sectors to create jobs, spur new business and expand opportunities for New Yorkers to participate in the City’s economy. The Fund is governed by a Board of Directors co-chaired by Richard M. Cashin, Managing Partner of One Equity Partners, and Charles “Chip” Kaye, co-chief executive officer of Warburg Pincus. Maria Gotsch serves as President and CEO of the Fund.

Jewish Federation of The East Bay Announces Alight 100: One Hundred Days of Giving Back

Berkeley, CA, December 4, 2014 – Today, the Jewish Federation of the East Bay announced the launch of Alight 100: One hundred days of giving back. This intensive 100 day awareness and fundraising campaign, running through March 15, will frame the Federation’s work and impact with weekly themed email updates presenting the Federation’s direct service work in the areas of Learning, Caring, Culture, Israel, and Giving Back.

“Our goal is to generate enthusiasm to inspire community leaders, solicitors, donors and potential donors, to have meaningful conversations about giving back; and to raise $1.5 million in 100 days,” said Rabbi James Brandt, CEO, Jewish Federation of the East Bay and the Jewish Community Foundation. “In order to reach our goal we need to build partnerships for collective impact.”

During the 16 week campaign, topics of discussion will focus on many of the programs the Federation and Foundation support including the Sprout Program, Holocaust Survival Series, Donor Services, Birthright Trips, Ideas of Late Seminar Series, the East Bay International Jewish Film Festival, PJ Library, Creating a Jewish Legacy, JCC Kosher Lunches, and much more.

The first topic will featurean introduction from Liora Brosbe, the new Youth & Family Concierge introducing Sprout: Helping Jewish Families Grow Together. In this new position, Liora meets with families to make personalized referrals to Jewish preschools, religious schools, day schools, summer camps, family programs and more. Liora puts herself out in the community as both a match-maker and provider of resources, helping to mitigate the stress new families face of in finding ways to connect.

Funds raised during ALIGHT 100: One hundred days of giving back will support the Federation and Foundation’s continued work to build a vibrant Jewish community, support the vulnerable, and secure the Jewish future. To make a donation, visit or call 510.839.2900.

The Jewish Federation of the East Bay and The Jewish Community Foundation are dedicated to building and sustaining a vibrant and inclusive local Jewish community and supporting Jewish life in the East Bay, Israel, and throughout the world. The Federation and Foundation work together with East Bay Jewish donors to create a rich and supportive community guided by the Jewish values of tzedakah (righteous giving), chesed (loving kindness) and tikkun olam (repairing the world). For more information call 510.809.4953 or visit

Posiba – A Whole New Way to Drive Greater Social Impact in Giving

Emerging company introduces state of the art information service to the charitable sector

SAN DIEGO, December 4, 2014 – The landscape of charitable giving is about to receive a makeover with the launch of Posiba. Poised to revolutionize the way giving improves the world by bringing people and information together for greater impact, Posiba is a big data and analytics information service supporting foundations, governments, charities and donors using the power of aggregated information.

Foundations, philanthropists and nonprofit leaders are seeking to improve individual lives and societies, yet most are still seeking ways to measure their influence. According to Posiba’s CEO, Elizabeth Dreicer, “Many recognize they need intelligent information to drive more positive impact and are ready to adopt solutions that are easily deployed and affordable.”

Seeing the crucial need to bring affordable tools, information and analytics to the social sector, Posiba was created as a joint effort between Posiba CEO, Elizabeth Dreicer, and then COO of The California Endowment, B. Kathlyn Mead. Mead is now CEO of The San Diego Foundation. Through their experiences serving on nonprofit and foundation boards, the two were driven to better understand the influence of charitable giving. In order to understand this, they needed better information—data and analysis. Not seeing these capabilities in the market, the two set out to explore what was possible.

Now it’s possible

“Posiba enables any size foundation, nonprofit or government organization to be empowered with information in a way that is actionable and focused on impact,” said Dreicer. Historically, data on a charity’s impact has been difficult to gather and analyze. Now, Posiba does the legwork by creating a hub of information in their community so organizations no longer have to collect information from scratch.

Posiba—stands for it’s possible—to know, do and accomplish more in this important sector. According to Mead, “When we make data informed decisions we can better contribute to improving quality of life and social justice.”

“While the private sector has been quick to understand and capitalize on the value of data analytics and visualization, nonprofits (including endowments and foundations) have not likely due to resource limitations,” said Mead. “However we knew if we could harness the right data and present it in an accessible way, the results could be game changing.”

According to Dreicer, “Posiba was created to advance the charitable sector through democratization of knowledge. We believe that with feedback, powered by metrics and shared knowledge, organizations can become instrumented for learning and this will drive positive impact in their funding choices and program development.”

According to the National Center for Charitable Statistics, in the U.S. alone, public charities hold over $3.0 trillion in assets, with annual donor contributions and grant-making of approximately $350 billion.

State of the art data analytics

The vast majority of data relating to social programs such as obesity, violence, teen pregnancy, and vaccination rates are available on the Internet (big data). The data can be scraped, analyzed with modern techniques (analytics) and used to figure out who’s funding what, where, for whom, and to what end. Posiba works by aggregating and fusing public and private data along with crowd intelligence to support the needed insight. Posiba is also training its system through broad surveillance techniques (literature, internet-sphere data, etc.) and natural language processing to capture and understand the many interventions taking place in the sector and how those actions are perceived to be working by experts, practitioners and, eventually, recipients.

These aggregated data are then made available at scale on an affordable basis to system participants both on the funding and requesting sides. According to Dreicer, “Combining the necessary information together enables a more holistic view of the ecosystem environment (funders and indicators) and how this is changing over time. This knowledge enables all to quickly move to the understanding that is required to move with greater velocity”.

“Interestingly, individuals are the biggest contributors to charity and give about $220 billion in the U.S. alone—behind governments yet outpacing foundations 5 to 1. Indeed, their support is also more stable and less subject to the ebb and flow of government and foundation policy shifts. So, getting information about individual support to funders of all types and governments, as well as supporting individual donors with information about impact is extraordinarily important.” In fact, according to Dreicer, “We have been challenged by one of our investors to capture and support individual donors more effectively.” Posiba expects to make an exciting announcement on that front very soon.

Knowledge is power

Mead brought Posiba to The California Endowment and helped field the early Posiba platform in a real world setting. According to Mead, “Prior to this point, while there were goals, it was difficult for trustees and staff to understand the collective funding impact toward these goals. It is rare that only one funder is supporting an initiative, organization or place.” Posiba was incubated at Kuity, an advanced analytics software company, and spun out earlier this year. Since then, it has been working with beta customers—foundations, nonprofits, academic and government organizations—while aggregating and organizing content from public and other data sources.

It is far less expensive to subscribe to Posiba than to develop the same capability in-house. “I can’t employ even one junior analyst, never mind buy the software tools, acquire the data and perform all the analytics for the price of Posiba,” said Mead. “Even if I had capital without limits, I still wouldn’t have good insight into what my fellow funders have learned or see across the field. This is a field level information problem that requires a utility type solution. This is why I’ve participated in the development of Posiba and support their approach.”

Importantly, nonprofits can now see what is working and they can readily find who is funding their type of programs. Posiba is staking out the ground of better, cheaper, faster intelligence. It’s possible to know, learn and share better quality information, at an affordable cost to all and at a fast, more real time pace.

Larger nonprofit organizations and foundations can afford to hire staff and build out data analytics capabilities. This is not true for smaller organizations, which make up the majority of the sector. Surprisingly, most foundations, as well as charities, are very small. In fact, according to the Internal Revenue Service and The Urban Institute, National Center for Charitable Statistics, two-thirds of foundations and over 90% of public charities in the US have less than a million in total assets.

“Interestingly, the charitable sector doesn’t benefit from knowledge asymmetry. The Gates Foundation benefits from knowing what the Ford Foundation has figured out and vice versa,” noted Dreicer. “Even nonprofit charities that compete for contracts and grants from funders benefit by knowing what is working—or not. Posiba will actually lift all boats as funders and donors can be more bold in their work when they know which investments work and this may actually grow the pool of monies flowing into charitable purposes. Belief that nonprofits want to do the best and most they can with limited resources, and if they see their and others’ work more clearly, they will naturally adjust to doing more of what works. This is how Posiba changes the entire game.”

Funded by several high net-worth philanthropists with deep roots in some of the most successful tech companies in Silicon Valley coupled with a team of scientists—physicists, neuroscientists, mathematicians, statisticians along with web analytics pioneers, Posiba is well positioned to drive change.

About Posiba

Posiba is in the business of helping foundations, nonprofits and governments have greater impact by bringing people and information together. With Posiba, those working for social good get affordable access to information, tools and expert analysis to support better decisions and become better informed. With new insight and feedback, the charitable sector can have more impact. Posiba is an affordable, subscription-based web solution. For more information, visit

Win Private Concert from Recording Artist Aloe Blacc in Starkey Hearing Foundation’s Video Contest

Listen Carefully Contest Challenges Students to Create a PSA About Noise-Induced Hearing Loss, Which Affects 1 in 6 American teens

(Credit: Getty Images)

(Credit: Getty Images)

Los Angeles, CA (November 24, 2014) – To raise awareness about noise-induced hearing loss in teens, Listen Carefully, a Starkey Hearing Foundation program, launched a national video contest today challenging middle school and high school students (ages 13-18) to create public service announcements (PSAs) about the importance of hearing protection. The winning student(s) and their school will win a private concert by Interscope recording artist Aloe Blacc in 2015.

The “Listen Carefully Contest” was created in response to data showing that noise-induced hearing loss increased 30 percent in teens over the past decade. Today 1 in 6 American teens has permanent hearing loss due to high volume sounds. Listen Carefully is a domestic program of Starkey Hearing Foundation, an international nonprofit that gives the gift of hearing to people in need around the world.

“From the studio to the stage, my hearing is a critical part of my art,” said Interscope recording artist Aloe Blacc. “I am so honored to join Listen Carefully to help raise awareness about noise-induced hearing loss and look forward to performing at the school of the video contest winner,” he continued.

Football games, concerts, portable listening devices, lawn mowers and even hairdryers can damage kids’ hearing in as little as 10 seconds. “At the core of creating a revolution in hearing health is the conscientiousness that teenagers must develop regarding their own ears,” said Dr. Vanessa Rothholtz, a Board Certified Otolaryngologist in Los Angeles, California. “This begins with education and influences in their environment, such as the music industry, their parents and their friends. However, it is ultimately the young adult’s responsibility to actively participate in the protection of their hearing,” she continued.

“Noise-induced hearing loss is permanent, but often preventable,” said Tani Austin, Co-Founder of Starkey Hearing Foundation. “We hope this contest will help provide a creative way for students to learn and educate their peers about the long-term health dangers associated with high-volume sounds.”

The Listen Carefully contest is accepting 30-second video submissions between November 24 and December 31, 2014 from teens ages 13-18 who are enrolled an accredited U.S. middle school or high school. Video should be submitted to Listen Carefully’s official contest page ( ). Qualifying entries will be made public for general voting from January 13-31, 2015. The top three finalists will be notified on February 1, 2015 and the grand prize winner will win a private concert from Aloe Blacc at his or her school. Second and third place winners will each receive a GoPro© camera and a trip to attend the concert with a parent or legal guardian.

About Listen Carefully:

Listen Carefully is Starkey Hearing Foundation’s domestic initiative to raise awareness about noise-induced hearing loss and help prevent a hearing loss epidemic. Today, 1 in 6 American teens has permanent hearing loss due to high-volume sounds. Football games, concerts, music players, and hairdryers can damage kids’ hearing in a matter of seconds. Noise-induced hearing loss is permanent, but preventable. For more information, visit Listen Carefully online at, via Facebook at,, or

About Starkey Hearing Foundation:

Starkey Hearing Foundation uses hearing as a vehicle to reflect caring and change lives around the world. Disabling hearing loss affects more than 360 million people, including 32 million children, worldwide, yet many do not have access to the hearing devices that can help them. Starkey Hearing Foundation fits and gives more than 100,000 hearing aids annually, and as a member of President Clinton’s Global Initiative, it has pledged to fit one million hearing aids this decade. Last year alone they provided over 175,000 hearing aids for free to men, women and children in need. In addition to giving the gift of hearing through worldwide hearing missions, Starkey Hearing Foundation promotes hearing health awareness and education through the Listen Carefully campaign and provides hearing instruments to low-income Americans through the Hear Now program. For more information on Starkey Hearing Foundation, visit

Lutheran World Relief Prepares for Typhoon Hagupit Relief, Commits Initial $50,000 to Aid Relief Efforts in the Philippines

Team prepared to assess needs on the ground in the most affected areas

BALTIMORE, MD (December 5, 2014) – In preparation for Typhoon Hagupit, which is expected to make landfall December 6 local time in the Philippines, Lutheran World Relief, a U.S.-based humanitarian agency, has made an initial commitment of $50,000 to assist those most affected and will be on the ground to assess needs and develop a plan to aid in both short- and long-term recovery. The storm is predicted to cause widespread damage and affect millions in an area still recovering from last year’s Super Typhoon Haiyan.

“We are monitoring the situation closely through our staff on the ground and with those here in the U.S. and are prepared to respond,” said Daniel Speckhard, president and CEO of Lutheran World Relief. “We send our support and prayers to those in the region. We will stand beside them during the recovery and rebuilding, and we urge donors to join us and help give what they can to the relief efforts of what is predicted to be a devastating storm.”

Lutheran World Relief is accepting donations for this emergency. Please give online at Donors can also call 800-597-5972 or send a check to Lutheran World Relief, P.O. Box 17061, Baltimore, MD 21297-1061. Indicate “Philippines Typhoon” on your check.

Lutheran World Relief staff in the Philippines and from its Baltimore headquarters plan to travel Monday to some of the most-affected areas to assess damages, identify needs, and further develop a response plan.

The teams will meet with representatives of the United Nations, government agencies, local partners, churches and community groups to coordinate a response. Lutheran World Relief’s response will likely include a cash-for-work program and a shelter program similar to the programs it implemented following 2013’s Typhoon Haiyan. That response assisted more than 23,000 people through short-term work assignments clearing storm debris from schools, parks, roads and other public spaces, and distributed more than 5,000 shelter repair kits, providing shelter for more than 26,000 people.

Depending on needs on the ground, Lutheran World Relief’s response to Typhoon Hagupit may also include distribution of handmade Quilts, School Kits, Baby Care Kits and Personal Care Kits. Following last year’s Typhoon Haiyan, Lutheran World Relief provided more than $800,000 worth of these donated items to an estimated 69,000 people. To learn more about donating Quilts and Kits, please visit our website.

“Awareness of the coming storm and the potential damage is very high,” said Femia Baldeo, Lutheran World Relief’s country director in the Philippines. “Because Typhoon Haiyan hit just one year ago, communities haven’t completely recovered yet, and this storm could have significant impacts in the same areas. But thanks to the work of Lutheran World Relief and other nongovernmental organizations building relationships with the local governments, there is an amazing sense of preparation and calm around this emergency. So much work has gone into helping communities prepare for emergencies that, compared to the frenzy before Typhoon Haiyan, most people are feeling organized and ready for this storm.”

Lutheran World Relief has been working on the ground in the Philippines for several years leading the quality and accountability efforts for much of the country in tandem with local groups, community leaders and government officials. The organization has been highly active in previous relief and recovery efforts, including implementing cash for work, shelter, water, and sanitation programs and organizing trainings for hundreds of NGO and government staff to better prepare for and guard against the worst impacts of future disasters.

For more information about Lutheran World Relief and its programs, visit:

UN Women Executive Director Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka and Chair of Angelica Fuentes Foundation sign collaboration agreement in Mexico

Foundation commits 1 million dollars to gender equality and women’s economic empowerment

Mexico City 4 December 2014 – During an official visit to Mexico, Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, Under-Secretary General of the UN and Executive Director of the United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and Empowerment of Women, UN Women, met with businesswoman and philanthropist, Angelica Fuentes to discuss the important role that private sector can play in accelerating women’s economic empowerment, ending violence against women and helping UN Women to reach its objectives by providing adequate funds and serving as advisors.

During the meeting Angelica Fuentes Foundation announced a donation of US$ 1 million dollars to fund programs dedicated to social, economic and political empowerment of women, a primary focus for Angelica Fuentes and her philanthropic endeavors. These funds will support four initiatives: the Fund for Gender Equality, the 20th anniversary of the Beijing Declaration and Platform of Action; a study on women’s economic empowerment in Latin American and the Caribbean and the HeforShe campaign.

Angelica Fuentes Foundation contribution will bolster UN Women’s Fund for Gender Equality (FGE) in Latin America and the Caribbean region on a range of strategic issues, from national advocacy for decent work legislation and social protection services to engaging women’s collective action and participation in key political spaces and structures, where the Fund has already invested US$ 17 million on high-impact women’s initiatives since 2009.

The Executive Director expressed UN Women’s deep appreciation for Ms. Fuentes’s strong support and to the promotion of gender equality in Mexico, and regionally in Latin America. Ms. Mlambo-Ngcuka also commended the important contribution of committed business and foundations, such as Angelica Fuentes Foundation, as leaders and role-models, to empowering women, offering family-friendly work practices and working towards closing wages gaps between men and women.

About UN Women

UN Women is the UN organization dedicated to gender equality and the empowerment of women. A global champion for women and girls, UN Women stands behind women’s equal participation in all aspects of life, focusing on five priority areas: increasing women’s leadership and participation; ending violence against women; engaging women in all aspects of peace and security processes; enhancing women’s economic empowerment; and making gender equality central to national development planning and budgeting.

UBS Introduces BETA Version of Planet Art, an Ipad App That Delivers Contemporary Art News to Global Audiences

A simple tool to navigate vast amounts of contemporary art information, Planet Art collects and organizes news, features and market stories from a broad range of sources into custom content streams for users.

Zurich, New York, 01 December 2014 – Today, global financial services company UBS announced the release of Planet Art, a new iPad app that is the first and only app to collect and distill global news about contemporary art. Available free of charge from the Apple App Store, Planet Art will be introduced during the December 2014 opening of Art Basel in Miami Beach, where UBS welcomes collectors, curators, gallerists and general art lovers to experience the app in action during one of the art world’s largest and most exciting annual events.

Developed by UBS, Planet Art uses unique algorithms to read, index and objectively rank information from mainstream media, traditional art world news outlets, niche publications and blogs. Based on these methods, the app presents the top-ranked information on trending topics as reported in the media.

Continuously updated, Planet Art offers a snapshot of the most relevant and trending topics in contemporary art. Featuring a simple and intuitive design, the app organizes key stories from a diverse range of news sources into three categories—News, Features and The Market, helping seasoned professionals and beginning art enthusiasts alike to digest and stay up-to-date on the most topical art world information. Users can personalize Planet Art to create a custom content stream focusing on locale, specific artists, galleries, museums and subjects and the app also can help users discover new interests.

“Clients rely on UBS’s business expertise to help provide them with clarity and direction within a complex international financial system. In the same way, Planet Art serves as an invaluable guide through a vast and often confusing system of contemporary art news sources and trends,” stated Johan Jervøe, Chief Marketing Officer for UBS. “We believe that critical insights and seeing the bigger picture are fundamental shared values between the art world and providing financial services.”

As an active participant in the field of contemporary art—with a renowned corporate collection, a record of investment in diverse international arts initiatives, and as global Lead Partner of the major modern and contemporary art fair Art Basel in all three of its worldwide venues—UBS developed Planet Art to provide its clients and the art world at large with a simple tool to navigate the growing and often fragmented landscape of art information available today.

Planet Art draws its content from RSS sources offering publicly available information. At the time of launch, highlights of some of news sources currently featured in Planet Art include: The Art Newspaper; ARTnews; Art in America; ArtFCity; Art Asia Pacific (China); BBC Culture blog (UK); Financial Times (UK); The Guardian (UK); New York Observer’s Art & Gallerist; The New York Times; and The Wall Street Journal, among others. The Planet Art content list will be evaluated regularly and will grow over time.

For more information about Planet Art:
Download here:

UBS & Contemporary Art

Planet Art joins an extensive roster of contemporary art initiatives and programs in which UBS is engaged: the UBS Art Collection is one of the world’s largest and most important corporate collections of contemporary art; the firm continues to provide long-term global support for the premier international Art Basel shows in Basel, Miami Beach and Hong Kong, for which they serve as global Lead Partner; and UBS collaborates with the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum and Foundation on the Guggenheim UBS MAP Global Art Initiative. These activities are complemented by a number of regional partnerships including the Fondation Beyeler in Switzerland, the Nouveau Musée National de Monaco, the Louisiana Museum in Denmark and the Art Gallery of New South Wales in Sydney, Australia. UBS also provides its clients with insight into the contemporary art world through the UBS Art Competence Center and the UBS Arts Forum. The company’s long and substantial record of patronage in contemporary art actively enables clients and audiences to participate in the international conversation about art and the global art market through the firm’s contemporary art platform.

About UBS

UBS draws on its 150-year heritage to serve private, institutional and corporate clients worldwide, as well as retail clients in Switzerland. Its business strategy is centered on its pre-eminent global wealth management businesses and its leading universal bank in Switzerland, complemented by its Global Asset Management business and its Investment Bank, with a focus on capital efficiency and businesses that offer a superior structural growth and profitability outlook.

UBS is present in all major financial centers worldwide. It has offices in more than 50 countries, with about 35% of its employees working in the Americas, 36% in Switzerland, 17% in the rest of Europe, the Middle East and Africa and 12% in Asia Pacific. UBS employs about 60,000 people around the world. Its shares are listed on the SIX Swiss Exchange and the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE).


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